Exercise is part of a healthy life, and can do a great deal in the way of keeping your weight at a sustainable level while improving your skin, your endurance, and your mood. There can come a point, however, when exercise isn’t only benefiting you, but is actually doing harm to your tresses.
How Are Hair and Exercise Related?
When done carefully, exercise can actually support hair growth. By keeping hormone, blood sugar, and stress levels steady, exercise is a simple, useful tool in your beauty or self-care arsenal. Just as exercise can have a positive impact on your hair growth and staying power, it can also have a deleterious effect, leading to accelerated thinning or balding.
Exercise Habits to Avoid
Sparking hair loss via exercise is not an easy thing to do, but may be more common than you’d expect. Certain exercise habits could be the source of sudden, prolonged, or unexplained hair loss. The good news is this: most thinning caused by poor gym habits can be reversed with a little bit of care and time.
#1. Overworking Your Body
Your body is not exactly a machine that can be worked and worked without giving it some care and consideration. Instead, your body is a large, living organism that requires balance. If you overwork your body by doing too many reps in the gym, or pushing yourself too hard at the end of a run, you could be creating an unnecessary amount of stress, rather than providing a nourishing, healing experience.
Prolonged overworking can lead to a heavy tax on your mental, emotional, and physical health, all of which are tied to healthy skin and hair. In order to keep your hair healthy, you must keep your entire body healthy.
#2. Overdoing Protein Powder
Protein powder runs the gamut, and is frequently seen gracing the aisles of supermarkets and the lockers of frequent gym-goers. Protein powder in and of itself is not necessarily bad, but using it too much or inappropriately can cause problems. Many protein powders on the market contain artificial ingredients that can mimic DHT in the body—and DHT has been definitively linked to balding in men.
In addition to potentially harmful ingredients such as DHT and unnecessary sugars, protein powders can also cause problems if they are misused. Regularly skipping meals in favor of a protein powder shake may not seem harmful, but a simple shake or smoothie does not provide the fiber and food groups required to comprise a meal.
#3. Failing to Replenish Nutrients
Finally, exercise can quickly become a problem if you do not replenish the nutrients you lose during the practice. The amount of water you lose, alone, is potentially hazardous, but your body uses a lot of fuel during exercise. If you do not replenish the energy you lose during exercise, your body will seek it elsewhere, which could mean diverting nutrients from your hair and experiencing hair loss.
In Motion. Is your work causing hairloss?. Accessed 10/16/17.
Livestrong. Exercise & Hair Loss. Accessed 10/16/17.