My daughter was born with a full head of hair. In fact, she had more hair than most other babies her age and was always getting comments on how much hair she had as a baby.
She had been eating a good, balanced diet since the day she started eating solid foods. Her diet consisted of the typical fruits, vegetables, and a small amount of meat and seafood. She was never on a heavily processed ‘junk’ food diet.
When she was 19 months old, she had a throat infection from the daycare, and the doctor treated her with a 2-week course of antibiotics. At that time, we noticed her hair started thinning and got very dry and brittle in texture. Not long after, she started to lose an unusual amount of hair along the hairline, and spots of hair loss started to form randomly all over her head.
Although her spots always ended up growing back, new spots would form, and we went into this constant cycle of loss and growth for years to come.
We were seen by a paediatric dermatologist at a major children’s hospital in Australia at the time, and was diagnosed with autoimmune Alopecia Areata. Nothing else was offered or deemed to be safe or worth the side effects for a child her age.
In the world of conventional medicine, treatment options for Alopecia (and most other chronic inflammatory conditions for that matter) would include some form of steroids, immunosuppressive drugs, and even antihistamines (allergy medicine) as well as antibiotics! None of these meds solve the problem that causes Alopecia in the first place; they merely attempt to suppress the symptoms of hair loss by artificially altering your immune responses, and as with all medication, they always come with side effects, or collateral damage.
All medications have side effects on your body, whether you feel those side effects now or not. When you suppress or alter your immune responses, you put yourself at higher risk of infection and other diseases including cancer, for example, as you impair your body’s ability to protect you by fighting off these diseases. They do not do anything to solve your Alopecia.
This is why some people don’t get the results they’re hoping for, or they don’t see lasting results. They may get some regrowth initially but the results fade off unless they increase the dose of their medication. Or worse still, they don’t see any meaningful hair growth while putting their body through the damaging impact of these very strong meds. This is also why the doctors will need to monitor your liver and kidney functions while you are on these meds. The question then is, are the potentially serious and life-threatening side effects worth it?
The next 2 years, we saw at least 7 other doctors in Australia and Canada, and no one was able to offer us anything.
During this time, we were randomly trying different foods and essential oils treatment on the hair. I had such a hard time finding any reliable source of information on what to do exactly, and randomly trying different things did not get us out of those cycles of loss and growth.
My daughter’s Alopecia was not a simple case of being on an unhealthy, highly processed, ‘junk’ food diet, which was simply resolved by switching to a somewhat healthier diet.
Some programs out there automatically assume that you must have been on an unhealthy diet and lifestyle which cause your Alopecia. But my daughter’s was a true case of autoimmunity, and it persisted until we addressed the root cause from multiple angles.
How We Got Here
I spent a few years studying, listening to countless hours of lectures, trying to understand the link between nutrition and immunology, and in the process, uncovered so much misleading information circulating out there.
Existing diet protocols, including ones that claim to address autoimmune and inflammatory conditions do not sit well with me when considering the mounting evidence that wholesome plant foods are the key to superior health. Even multivitamins and hair vitamins that many people assume are natural, are not harmless.
In order to achieve full regrowth for my daughter, I needed to address her immune system from multiple angles. Diet is a big part of it but it takes much more than that. It can be confusing to navigate so much contradicting information out there. I have put the pieces together based on what is supported by scientific evidence as well as what works for my daughter’s persistent Alopecia.
Thinking about her whole life ahead of her, I am extremely picky in choosing what to give to my daughter and what to feed her. Synthetic multivitamins and hair gummies don’t make the cut, let alone steroids, allergy meds, balding creams, and in my opinion the worst of all, immunosuppressive drugs.
While we may wish that the answer to resolving hair loss due to alopecia is as simple as what pill, what herbal remedies or shampoo or cream to use, or even what diet protocol to follow, the reality is that is is much more complex than that. If you’re reading this, you probably already know that.
I took years to develop the method that I have today. I spent years learning and refining my approach until my daughter gets full regrowth and gets out of those cycles of loss and growth. For some people, simply applying oils or eliminating processed foods from their diet is enough to resolve their Alopecia. But for most of us, it is not that simple.
The Missing Piece from Alopecia Treatment Options Today
Every treatment option being offered out there focuses on the attempt to suppress the symptoms, not the root cause. Even elimination diets are only addressing the symptoms of negative reaction to otherwise healthy foods such as whole grains, beans, legumes and nightshade vegetables.
So while some natural topical treatment may be helpful in stimulating hair growth, reducing bald patches, and improving hair quality, the same amount of focus needs to be put toward attempting to fix a malfunctioning immune system so that it stops attacking our own body by mistake.
Immunosuppressive drugs, usually in the form of steroids, whether topical, injected, or orally administered, work by suppressing our immune system so that it stops attacking the hair follicles. Numerous papers have investigated the long-term efficacy and side effects of this treatment method, not to mention it is generally not preferred for children with alopecia. Fundamentally, even though these drugs may show a temporary improvement in the condition, it still doesn’t address the underlying malfunctioning immune system.
Start With Your Immune System
It took me more than 5 long years to put all the pieces together, test and validate my approach, at the same time uncover so much misleading and false information circulating out there.
At the core of my approach, we start with the immune system:
I learned through first-hand experience with overcoming my daughter’s persistent Alopecia. One that wasn’t as simple as following a diet protocol or eliminating a bunch of foods. And one where it was not a straight line journey, but instead filled with many setbacks, to get to a point where I now have a ‘system’ that addresses multiple angles.
I know how hard it could be. And I want to help you by sharing what I’ve learned, and what has worked for us. But remember, I can give you all the information, but you still have to put in the effort and be committed to your own recovery. Here’s to getting your hair and optimal health back!
SC | Winning Alopecia
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