To all of our curry loving Curlies, this one goes out to you!
Ayurvedic medicine gives us a lot of great options for hair and overall health to chose from in our curl-friendly products and regimens. While we don't discriminate when it comes to 'unpronounceable' components in products here, there's definitely something to be said for stepping away from the science lab and taking a look at what nature has to offer us in terms of hair care solutions—specifically about hair loss. Today the spotlight's on turmeric!
Turmeric is a root in the same family as ginger, and is rich in compounds called curcuminoids. These natural phenols are thought to stop the overproduction of DHT, a chemical converted from testosterone that the body naturally produces, which leads to hair loss at the follicle level. A recent study published in Biospectrum Life Science Institute Journal takes a closer look at this relationship between DHT and curcumin. According to a section of the report published on HairGrowthSOS, "The study involved transforming growth factor beta 1 (TGF-beta1). This protein has been associated with hair follicle inflammation and hair loss, and also becomes active in the presence of androgens including dihydrotestosterone (DHT). When DHT was added to human epidermal cells, TGF-beta1 levels increased. But when they were subsequently treated with curcumin, the TGF-beta1 levels decreased. This suggests that curcumin can reduce inflammation through TGF-beta1 suppression and, therein, might be able to successfully treat the component of hair loss related to inflammation." Another benefit of the unique compounds found in turmeric is that it stimulates vitamin D absorption, which has also been linked to hair growth.
However, much like its effects on other inflammation related ills like arthritis and ulcers, the jury is still out on whether or not turmeric, or its active compounds are really capable of stopping hair loss on their own. Higher level clinical studies have been conducted and the results, unfortunately, haven't been definitively proven one way or the other.
While the benefits of turmeric for hair are still up for debate, that doesn't mean you shouldn't get in on using it in your everyday life! This is a spice that has been used throughout much of southeast Asian medicine, food, and beauty regimens for centuries after all. Can 1/3rd of the world's population be all wrong? We certainly hesitate to say yes!
There are turmeric supplements available to help add this super spice to your diet. However, because turmeric is not water soluble, taking it with your morning tea as a capsule doesn't allow your intestines to fully absorb the properties of it the same way as cooking it with oils and other fats, so sprinkling some of the spice on food is a better way of adding turmeric to your routine. Even those of us with an all-white color scheme in the house can't argue with a good curry. And if you notice your hair's looking better and better while scientists try to find a definitive answer for that aspect of the spice, then consider it an added bonus to an already delicious flavor! You can also find turmeric in products for topical beauty use like My Honey Child's Type 4 Hair Creme and Reshma's Moisturizing Soap Bar and anti-aging Face Mask.