Is weightlifting making you bald?
A warning to all the buff gym-goers out there: Could the gym be making you bald? According to a London based hair transplant surgeon, this indeed could be the case. Dr Thomy Kouremada-Zioga, a Hair Transplant Surgeon at The Private Clinic of Harley Street, claims she has experienced a soaring number of enquiries coming from men suffering with accelerated hair loss, men that have been consuming powdered protein and regularly going to the gym. Dr Kouremada-Zioga says that around 70% of the male patients coming into her clinic are avid users of protein shakes. She says that it is specifically weightlifting in the gym that could play a part in the men’s hair loss – particularly done in conjunction with consuming protein powders. This theory is based on the belief that, joined together, the two factors can raise levels of testosterone and Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in the body. These are often thought of as two primary components that cause hair loss. DHT is naturally created and a converted version of testosterone. It rapidly joins to a man's hair strand's receptor cells, stopping the absorption of essential nutrients. Then over the course of time, this results in follicles starting to shrink, with hair withering and eventually dying. Therefore, gym-goers are having more exposure to DHT, thus risking an earlier start of them losing their hair. “Interestingly, the activity that men do in the gym can also potentially impact hair loss. While cardio will reduce the levels of DHT in the blood stream, excess weight lifting can increase testosterone levels and therefore accelerate hair loss”, Dr Kouremada-Zioga told the Daily Express. “Protein shakes will very often contain growth hormones such as Creatine and DHEA, which not only increase muscle mass, but also increase testosterone levels in the bloodstream. “Testosterone produces a chemical known as DHT, which actually contributes to baldness when the hair follicles become exposed to too much. Sadly, this is something that most men are unaware of, until they notice that their hair loss has already become more apparent.” However, this could be avoided if people substitute the weights for cardio-based exercises - and banish the protein shakes. She added: “I would therefore also advise those men who focus on lifting weights in the gym, to be mindful of just how much lifting they do and, where possible, to do more aerobic exercises.” Dr Kouremada-Zioga also advises men who are pre-disposed to balding to stop using protein shakes that contain growth factors and hormones, instead trying to gain natural sources of protein into their diet from sources such as chicken, fish and eggs. “Men should also ensure they are eating a healthy and balanced diet, which contains essential vitamins and minerals.” Before all male fitness-fanatics around the country begin to cancel their gym membership though, and pour their expensive protein powders down the toilet, the issue will apparently only present itself if the person is already predisposed to male pattern baldness. She said: “It is important to distinguish between cause and effect here. Protein shakes do not cause hair loss. “They do, however, accelerate hair loss for those men who suffer with androgenetic hair loss or alternatively, those who are predisposed to balding, as many men are.” There is no reason to suffer alone though, millions of people in Britain alone are battling hair loss and Medical Specialists® Pharmacy are here to help. With our extensive range of hair loss treatments for men and women, you can act now to halt the progression of hair loss, and even possibly see regrowth of hair. Medical Specialists® can provide the prescription-only medication Propecia (finasteride), which is used to treat male pattern baldness and works by blocking the conversion of testosterone to DHT, which thought to cause hair loss. It is obtainable following a quick and easy 4-step process, which includes an online consultation with one of the Medical Specialists’® in-house doctors. Other options that can be used in conjunction to Propecia include Regaine Foam or Regaine Lotion, as featured in numerous television adverts. Obtainable from Medical Specialists Pharmacy, Regaine products contain the active ingredient Minoxidil; clinically proven to help prevent further hereditary hair loss. Minoxidil works by increasing the blood supply to the hair follicles, helping to strengthen existing hair and stimulate secondary hair growth. Women can also take minoxidil, contained within Regaine for Women, and have the option of the over-the-counter treatment Florisene® – strongly recommended as an addition to any female hair loss treatment. Florisene® is especially recommended for women who have reduced hair volume (compared with several years ago) or who have recently noticed hair shedding as seen by more hairs in the brush, comb or when shampooing.