Carnivore Diet vs. Hair loss: Does it cure it or cause it?
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Red Meat makes you bald! Fact or Fiction? Have you heard of stories or read articles claiming Carnivore makes your hair fall out? You have!
Well, guess what? So have I. I’ve also heard people swear that their hair grows quicker, thicker, stronger, shinier, and in some cases even regrown on Carnivore.
So let’s look into it a bit.
What is the Carnivore Diet?
You eat animal products, whichever ones you like but ideally a lot of ruminant meat like beef.
It’s so basic, you eat when you are hungry, you stop eating when you are full, rinse, and repeat.
No calorie counting and no portion control. Easy peasy.
What is hair?
What types of articles you see in mainstream media
In mainstream media you often see clickbait articles blaming meat for hair loss.
I file these under the same heading as meat makes you impotent. That file is called “BS only worthy of the bin”. In these cases, I imagine a Peta brainstorming meeting.
Sarah: Right everyone, what can we blame meat for this week?
Jeff: No one likes being impotent.
Sarah: Excellent. So let’s say meat causes impotence. Anything else?
Jeff: No one likes being bald.
Sarah: Amazing. You are just earned yourself a bonus carrot for lunch.
The funny thing is; meat is often the way to help the very thing they say it causes!
And they are not the only ones at it!
The Belgravia Centre believes regularly eating red meat could increase the chances of hair loss.
Why? “People who eat higher quantities of red meat are more likely to develop diabetes”. Say what!
Meat helps cause Diabetes, really? ermmm nope as the last doctor I got info from said that’s probably not a true statement.
In fact, people with agendas regularly cherry-pick data for their cause and use faulty epidemiology to get a conclusion they want. Check out this article which shows how they do it:
And while we are talking about doctors you need to know about this guy, Dr. Shawn Baker.
He wrote “The Carnivore Diet” and if you are new to the meaty way of eating you need to get that book.
But back to the hair loss treatment company. The conspiracy nut in me would conclude, maybe a hair loss treatment company doesn’t want people to stop losing hair, and perhaps want people to stop eating red meat.
Carnivore may cause hair loss
Barring genetics there are only 2 reasons I can think of where the carnivore diet does actually lead to hair loss, and they may only be temporary.
For a matter of weeks, and maybe up to 3 months.
However, by the time you are 6 to 9 months into Carnivore, you will have likely replaced all the hair loss you experienced and you are better off than when you first started.
At least that’s what I’ve heard from carnivore diet advocates and other carnivore dieters….so let’s look at the 2 potential reasons:
- Stress – what I found was that when you stress your body it can lead to temporary hair loss. Any change in diet can result in this transitional problem. Switching from a standard western diet to a fat-adapted carnivore diet is a pretty big stressor on the body, as it has to learn to go from a sugar-fueled system to a fat-fueled system.
- Healing – going on carnivore is described as the ultimate elimination diet, and the elimination of harmful foods and the increase of nutrient-dense animal products can kick start the healing process from issues you didn’t realize was diet-related. This may and can lead your body to redirect its stores of proteins and nutrients.
The reason why Stress and Healing can lead to hair loss is that hair isn’t a primary system for the body.
I know a lot of people would disagree with this, but there are a lot more systems that the body deems more important than hair.
So for example, if you only consume enough protein and nutrients in one day to make 1 solitary cell, the body will build a cell for the lungs, heart, or eyes rather than your hair.
Only after the body has looked after all your primary systems, will it use any leftover nutrition to look after your hair. I pretty much learned this in grade school but it makes sense, right?
Carnivore should actually improve your hair health
Carnivore is a high protein diet, high in bioavailable nutrients, and means you aren’t eating a load of crap.
So in my opinion you will be supplying your body with more than enough protein and nutrients for your body’s primary systems.
Naturally, there will be plenty spare to look after things like hair. If you want a few more specifics, I think these are good reasons in favor of carnivore and excellent hair:
- Meat – it’s high in bioavailable and human appropriate protein, hair is protein, so a high protein diet will help. Sheer logic right there.
- Red meat – excellent useable protein levels obviously but it’s high in iron too. Iron is vital in allowing blood cells to get oxygen into the hair follicles. Blood flow is vital for hair growth. Ferritin is also a stored iron, and it is fairly settled science that ferritin deficiency is a major component of hair loss. (1)
- Fatty fish are great too – loaded with protein, vitamins, and fatty acids. All contributing to an overall healthy body and therefore healthy hair.
- Eggs – biotin is essential for the production of Keratin which is what hair mainly is. Eggs are high in biotin. Eggs are also high in selenium and zinc which are also considered hair healthy. (2) (3)
So it is my belief that the carnivore diet provides you with the proteins, vitamins, and minerals that appear to be directly responsible for building strong hair.
However, carnivore also results in general health improvements, and being generally healthier will naturally result in healthier hair too.
Real people in the real world
Marion – “Not only that but my eyebrows are growing back in after going years with only half brows.
My partner is growing just not thicker hair, but brown hair & on places there wasn’t any, the white hair is turning brown on his head and chest.”
Kimberly – “I am as lean as I have ever been, and my strength gains are out of control.
My cystic acne is gone, my hair and nails are thicker, and my skin feels softer and smoother.”
Olivia – “I went from 250 lbs down to 210 lbs in 3 months. My hair is growing back longer and stronger, my mood is better, my skin is clearer, my inflammation is gone, my energy is up and I feel absolutely amazing.
I practice intermittent fasting with 1-2 meals a day consisting of red meat. I’m almost completely off my thyroid medication and I see no need to ever stop this way of eating!”
Marcus – “I sleep a lot better and my hair is growing crazy fast.”
Does it make sense?
When I am asked a question by a non-carnivore friend or if I see an article about something I have never considered before.
I try to take a step back and think about things logically.
Why would carnivore cause hair loss? Well, logically it wouldn’t. Why would going from a potentially diseased state on say a Standard Western Diet, to a healthy carnivore diet mean that all your hair would fall out? It makes no sense.
There is no one thing that causes hair loss or gains. But if you are fit and healthy, and eat a highly nutritious and bioavailable diet then your body will have all the building blocks it needs for hair growth and health.
What is the most nutritious and bioavailable food on the planet…. red meat of course!
Curiosity and the motivation factor
Are you looking to improve your thickness or more importantly your overall health?
Also if you are super serious about going carnivore why not get a diet coach. Check out MeatRX which is run by Dr. Shawn Baker and get yourself a very affordable coach.
You can even book me as your coach! Book me here.
Or if you want to be a part of a community and ask questions to other carnivores, then go to the World Carnivore Tribe Facebook Group. Here you will find newbies and seasoned veterans all interacting and helping each other out.
And of course, if you need “stuff” check out our recommended products here.
I wish you major carnivorous luck and great hair health!
Disclaimer: I’m not a doctor. Consult with and ask your doctor about any diet or medical-related questions. No information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any disease or condition.