Ok, this is totally off topic but may interest some people. This year, I changed my every day diet. I’ve been reading a load of stuff on the impact of diet on brain function. Our next door neighbour is suffering from dementia and I want to make sure as far as possible that I avoid it. There’s a burgeoning volume of literature that links diet and gut health to cognitive function. If you want to read a couple of books, I suggest Genius Foods by Max Lugavere and The Diet Myth by Tim Spector.
As a result of reading these books (and others), I decided to reduce the amount of processed food (mainly sugar and gluten based) in my diet. I’ve increased my protein intake (especially fish and eggs). I now have a good portion of green vegetables (mainly, spinach, broccoli, kale) or a large green salad every day and instead of puddings I have fruit. Snacks are fruit and nuts. One of the main changes has been to have a good portion of protein at breakfast (poached egg and smoked salmon, in addition to my usual porridge). I’ve found this gives me a lot more energy in the morning. When backpacking, I often have freeze-dried scrambled eggs, sometimes with Biltong for breakfast.
I definitely feel healthier for these changes and they haven’t required a huge sacrifice. Admittedly, it’s more difficult to follow when backpacking, when I tend to eat more sugar and gluten than I would normally. As it’s only for a short time, I figure the damage shouldn’t be much.
After being on this “diet” for just over six months, I noticed a strange, unexpected but welcome side effect. I’ve suffered from male pattern baldness from my late thirties. Both sides of my family have it, so I just accepted it as part of life and made no attempt to mitigate it. Over the past few months, the hair on my bald pate has started to regrow. At the moment, while it’s not thick, it is noticeable and has good coverage.
My hairdresser has noticed it too. It’s got to the stage where I’m starting to use hair clippers regularly to keep it neat. While it’s still not thick, it is getting thicker. It feels very weird but quite exciting. I’ve no idea how far it will progress and how thick it will become, but I’m hopeful that it will continue.
My mind turned to finding out the reason for this strange turn of events. With a bit of digging, it appears that our modern diet, particularly when it is composed of a lot of sugar and carbohydrates is deficient in many vital nutrients. More specifically, L-Cysteine, which is an amino acid which is important for hair growth (amongst other things).
It appears that my daily breakfast of and egg and smoked salmon has significantly increased my intake of L-Cysteine which has kickstarted hair regeneration. Here’s a short article about it https://aminoacidstudies.org/major-study-confirms-that-l-cysteine-can-reverse-hair-loss/ It also seems that my revised diet has increased my intake of vitamin B5, which also helps hair growth https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/vitamins/vitamin-b5-or-pantothenic-acid.html
Biotin and zinc are beneficial as well. Eggs seem to be a wonder-food with all these nutrients. Now that the eggs and cholesterol scare has been debunked, it looks like eggs are a great food to include in your diet.
I’m sharing this because I suspect that many other men have accepted that hair loss is “just one of those things”. However, it seems that dietary changes can help to reverse it. I do wonder what might have happened if I has adopted this diet in my mid-thirties. Even so, it would appear that it’s never too late to change. I’m not saying it will work for everyone, but it’s worth a try.
Footnote: the correct diet is a contentious subject and I have no intention of entering into any discussion about carnivore, vegetarian, vegan or any other diets. It’s really up to you what you want to eat and as Tim Spector’s book suggests, none of us are the same and everyone’s body has a slightly different requirement.