There is a reason women and men all over the world have grown to love actresses like Helen Mirren who have aged gracefully with more elegance and poise than ever. So whilst most of us don’t like the idea of aging, it could actually be an angle you can work… but if you are not ready to face that in the mirror – how does one keep the silver fox at bay for a little while longer?
Greying of hair can happen as a result of the natural aging process. The average age at which grey hairs ordinarily begin to appear is the late 20s or early 30s. However, these are only the odd grey hair and are not noticeable until a larger percentage of your hair turns grey usually well into your 40s.
A variety of factors can lead to premature greying with the major contributors being poor diet, stress, heavy metals, nutritional deficiencies and genetic predisposition. Hair only obtains its nutrition from the bloodstream so it stands to reason that diet (nutrition) plays a significant role in hair health. Deficiency of Protein, B vitamins, Zinc, Copper, Iron and Iodine have been linked to premature greying.
Stress contributes to hair greying as it activates the body’s fight or flight response using up vital nutrients usually used by the body to carry out essential body processes like synthesizing hormones, optimising digestion and enhancing immune function. Oxidative stress and free radical damage of cells caused by external stressors like sun exposure, radiation, pollution, pesticides, chemicals and smoking also accelerate the aging process leading to premature greying along with other physical signs of accelerated aging (WRINKLES).
By fuelling your body with a wide variety of healthy foods you can help provide the necessary nutrients to fight the signs of greying and ageing. Below are some great foods to add in to your diet to help maintain the health and integrity of your hair and skin!
- Spices such as turmeric, ginger, chili, cinnamon and cayenne can help boost circulation to help improve blood flow to the skin and scalp.
- Omega 3 fatty acids provide important building blocks for healthy connective tissue and help keep your hair shiny and full and your skin soft and youthful. Good sources include fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel as well as walnuts, avocado and chia seeds.
- Protein rich foods such as lean meats, legumes, eggs and full-fat probiotic rich organic yoghurt help offer amino acids and micronutrients necessary for healthy hair and skin.
- Organic fresh fruit and vegetables provide vitamins A, B and C, iron, folate, zinc, iodine and antioxidants to help support healthy hormone levels and fight against oxidative damage.
DIY Topical applications:
Coconut Oil & Lemon
Mix coconut oil and a dash of lemon and massage your head with the mixture for about 15 minutes. This recipe is traditionally used in Ayurvedic Medicine as an anti – greying tonic as well as helping with hair texture, strength and length.
Slow the greys through better stress management, regular exercise, adequate sleep and a healthy diet. But since ageing is inevitable it feels good to know that it is possible to just embrace the aging process and grow old with style – go you silver foxes!
Kirsten Taylor, Managing Director and founder of highly successful company SleepDrops is New Zealand’s leading naturopathic sleep specialist. With qualifications in Naturopathy, Nutrition, and Medical Herbalism and over 10 years’ experience in private clinic Kirsten has a wealth of knowledge on all matters health and wellbeing related. Kirsten has featured on Nationwide TV and radio shows, magazines and newspapers providing insights into a wide range of health conditions.
Read more of Kirsten’s columns here.