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Are Toxic Chemicals Destroying Your Hair?

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Grocery store shelves are lined with shampoos, conditioners, and other hair products that promise shinier, thicker, and stronger hair. Unfortunately, the results on your own hair tend to fall far short of the promises on the bottle. Even many of the choices that are “salon quality,” including the expensive ones from your favorite hairdresser or beauty store don’t deliver the results you’re looking for.

One of the main things that hair products miss is adding nutrients that help hair to remain strong and healthy. Biotin is one of the most important ones to look for on an ingredient list, as it helps to prevent breakage and leads to faster growing hair. Instead, most of the products you’ll find are damaging to the hair follicle, because the chemicals used are harsh and drying to both hair and skin, and can be pointed at as a contributing factor in many chronic diseases today.

If you want to give an extra boost to your hair, choose a vitamin and mineral supplement that includes biotin, or take biotin on its own. Your hair will grow in much stronger and faster than without it.

So what are some of the biggest chemicals that are in your hair care that are damaging? Here is a short list of some of the top offenders to avoid.

  • Parabens – Parabens are absorbed through the skin, and mimic the actions of estrogen, which is an important hormone for female health. Having too much estrogen and estrogen-like chemicals has been linked to obesity, reproductive health problems, and cancer.
  • Silicones – Silicones are synthetic chemicals that coat the hair follicle. These compounds are heavy and coat the hair shaft, and are difficult to remove even with the most clarifying of shampoos. This can leave hair flat, dull, and lifeless.
  • Sulfates – Sulfates are harsh detergents that strip hair of all its natural oils and layers of protection. This exposes the core of the hair strands to the environment, leading to dry, frizzy, thin hair that is prone to breakage.

In addition to these, preservatives and ingredients derived from petroleum and those that include formaldehyde are significant risks not only to the health and beauty of your hair, but also increase your risk of various cancers.

Avoid these toxic ingredients in your haircare routine, and instead choose natural, nourishing products that will help your hair grow more healthy and beautiful, and keep your health safe. Get started with biotin and grow your way to all-natural, gorgeous hair!

Women: Stop Hair Loss Before It Begins

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It’s a nagging fear every time we look at the drain after we shower. “Am I losing my hair??” All women lose hair at a different rate, and regrow it in the vast majority of cases. Don’t worry! Losing a few strands each day is normal and healthy. It is a sign that your hair follicles are functioning properly.

Unfortunately, sometimes these follicles are slow to begin regrowing strands of hair. Other times, the hair that they produce is thin and brittle. There are lot of reasons this can happen, from toxic chemicals in hair care products, to overly harsh treatments like flat ironing, all the way to nutrition and hormone balance.

Here’s some great tips to help boost your hair care skills and overall nutrition that will guard against hair loss:

Pump Up the Protein

The first way you can help stop hair loss before it starts is to make sure you’re eating enough protein. Hair is made primarily of protein, and your body has an easier time producing hair when the proteins it needs come easily, from your diet. Animal sources are great, though if you choose a plant based diet you also have many options. You should have a palm-sized portion of a protein-based food at each meal.

Treat Your Hair Gently

The next thing you can do is to be gentle with your hair. Once hair is grown from your head, it’s very hard to repair any damage, so it’s easy to see when hair has been over-processed. Tools like curling irons and flat irons, and even blow dryers, can damage the hair strands from the heat, making hair prone to breakage. If done near the scalp, hair follicles can be damaged, leading to slow growth, and even fewer follicles that produce hair. Combing and brushing harshly, as well as when hair is wet, can pull hair from the scalp, creating even more hair loss.

Maximize Nutrition

One of the best things you can do is to make sure that you get all the vitamins and minerals you need so your hair can grow more quickly. Good nutrition will help hair to be strong, thick, shiny, and beautiful. Since great hair starts on the inside, it makes sense to treat your body right as the first step to gorgeous hair. To make sure your hair grows as thickly as possible, focus on getting enough iron, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin D, and biotin. These are the most essential nutrients to have great hair, and getting too little of any of them can lead to hair thinning.

Of these, biotin has recently been identified in the hair care community as a miracle worker in helping women keep their hair. Even better, it helps keep it looking youthful and vigorous throughout their lives. A daily supplement that provides at least 5000mcg of biotin is a great start.

 

Mom’s Wisdom: The Natural Way to Healthy Hair, Skin and Nails

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Many moms today have experience with the beauty products that have come and gone over the last couple of decades. Even grandmas have some great advice that we can learn from, since they’ve seen all the trends and know what’s important. Many of their words of wisdom aren’t about products, either. Much of Mom’s best advice is about good habits that will keep your hair, skin and nails healthy and strong without breaking the bank.

Mom’s first tip is always to eat right and to eat your vegetables. Vitamins and minerals are essential for looking great, so your cells have all the materials they need to be vibrant-looking. Plus, you need plenty of protein for your tissues to keep growing. Many people skip out on the higher protein foods, thinking they are unhealthy, but that’s just the opposite of what they need. Hair, skin and nails are primarily made of proteins, so when Mom says you need some chicken or steak, she’s on to something.

Even when you do eat right, it’s hard to get enough of the vitamins that help your hair and nails to grow, as well as keep your skin looking soft and bright. Aim for a multivitamin that contains biotin, since that’s one of the most important ones we often miss. Biotin helps to keep hair growing fast and thick, and can protect against premature graying. Also look for vitamins A and E when choosing your supplements, since they work together to improve the health of our skin and hair.

Mom also always said to quit picking. Touching our face often can lead to transferring dirt and excess oils onto our skin, which can create the perfect conditions for acne. Picking at acne and blackheads can lead to infections, inflammation, and scarring, and that’s something we’d all like to avoid. Constantly twirling hair can cause breakage too, and the same is true with keeping our hair tied too tight. Brushing hair only when it’s dry is a key piece of mom advice, since hair breaks more easily when it’s wet.

Some of the other great tips Mom wishes we’d listen to are to use moderation in our routines, like not using too much makeup, and to choose a natural moisturizer every time we get out of the shower. Grandma also teaches us to save money where we can, but sometimes, when we want to splurge, to do it right.

There’s really no substitute for great health and an amazing appearance, which begins with stunning hair. Try biotin and the other tips above and see for yourself if Mom was right.

Eat Healthy, Live Longer

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Achieving a balanced way of eating is challenging for most of us. Let’s admit it, we love food, yet we have a complicated relationship with food and its affects on our bodies and our well-being. As we age, becoming well nourished empowers us to resist illness, lessen our chances of acquiring degenerative diseases and slow down the aging process. It will keep us on an even keel emotionally and help our minds stay sharp, clear and focused. It will give us sustained and steady energy and help us sleep better at night. And most importantly, it will bring new levels of joy and awareness to our lives.

As we age, our bodies give us not-so-subtle signs of how our lifestyle choices and foods we eat impact them. If we listen carefully and respond with a little tender loving care, we are able to prevent long-term damage to our bodies and enjoy vitality, good health and a vibrant complexion smiling at us in the mirror.

Red eyes, chronic inflammation, stiffness, joint pain, brittle hair and nails, wrinkles, sagging skin, brain fog or even occasional bouts of memory loss are all early signs of premature aging. We have the power to change the course and speed of our aging process.  We’ve all heard many times that food plays an incredible role in how young or how old we feel.

The good news is that we can start taking care of our health and feel better right away. Changing our eating habits is always a fantastic first step towards great health and feeling and looking our best. No matter what our age is today, healthy eating is something we should strive for…always.

Fruit bowl on wood vitamins

All experts agree that we can eat our way to a younger, healthier version of ourselves. As a general rule, we should aim to replace fattening starches made with white flour, such as breads, crackers, pretzels, chips, cereals and pastas with whole grains, brown rice, and legumes such as lentils. A good rule of thumb is to make sure to cover at least half of our plate with fruits and vegetables and don’t forget to add some spice to our dishes.  Spices like ginger and herbs like basil can help fight infection, reduce inflammation and prevent chronic diseases.

In order to feel younger immediately, try incorporating some of the following foods into your diet today:

  • Oranges – They’re delicious and contain loads of Vitamin C skin-firming collagen.
  • Broccoli – More than 2/3 of our daily recommended dose of Vitamin C. Just a half-cup of broccoli a day can give us energy and boost our immune system. Broccoli also has the nutrient sulforaphane, which helps with liver detoxification, and has properties that help fight cancer.
  • Yogurt – Provides calcium and phosphorus for good bone health and to help reduce skin wrinkling.
  • Bell peppers – Full of antioxidants, especially the brightly colored red, yellow and orange ones. They boost immune function, ward off sun damage and even may reduce cancer risk.
  • Berries – All kinds of berries are good for us — cranberries, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries – all contain antioxidants and Vitamin C for our skin.
  • Sweet potatoes – Contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents plus Vitamins A, C and E, for a glowing complexion and beautiful hair.
  • Carrots – Source of beta-carotene, which helps with skin-cell renewal and getting rid of free radicals that can make our skin age faster.
  • Whole grains – Great source of B vitamins to keep steady energy levels.
  • Leafy greens – Offer a range of B complex vitamins plus energy nutrients like magnesium and iron.
  • Almonds, walnuts and other nuts – Rich in magnesium, which supports adrenal function as well as metabolism of essential fatty acids.
  • Avocados – High in iron and copper, which aid in red blood regeneration and the prevention of nutritional anemia.
  • Garlic – Contains a detoxifying chemical called allicin, an antiviral and antifungal superpower used throughout history to treat colds and flu.

In addition to including more variety of fruits and vegetables in our diet, it’s also important to add supplements that offer vitamins and minerals that may be missing from our daily intake of beauty foods. A good one to start with is Miraclemed’s Biotin Forte Plus Vitamin D Extra Strength, which is the only biotin supplement in the market that also contains Vitamin D.  Biotin Forte Plus Vitamin D Extra Strength promotes healthy hair and strong nails, improves bone mass, supports cellular energy production and absorbs and assimilates easily.

Vitamin D is critical for calcium absorption and bone health and thought to be helpful in mood and weight regulation.  Typically, it is added to milk, cheese and yogurt products as very few foods provide Vitamin D naturally. Non-dairy sources of Vitamin D include egg yolks, beef liver, some fish, fortified orange juice and cereals.  The sun is another source, but as we all know, too much sun exposure increases our risk for skin cancer and premature aging.

The relationship between food and health is significant. Food affects us physically, mentally and emotionally, and everyone has slightly different food needs.  When you learn what works for your unique body and know how to make tasty natural foods part of your diet, you will use food in a positive way to boost your body and mind and correct imbalances of weight moods and energy. Creating balance through food doesn’t have to mean a radical overhaul, crash diet or detox.  Simply bringing your attention to the small things, and you are well on your way to building a better way of eating.

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