3 Reasons Why Your Hair Is Getting White Too Early
The graying of hair is a natural phenomenon that marks the passage of time in humans, even though many people do not like a lot of this.
This phenomenon occurs due to the lack of melanin, a pigment that gives color to the hair, in the hair follicle.
In most cases, cells that produce melanin are still present in the follicle but, over time, they cease to perform their function so efficiently.
In women, the most common is that the first white hairs appear after the age of 35, so it’s understandable that you might be a bit disappointed if your hair starts to whiten before that.
But there is not much to do other than dyeing the hair, as the main factor involved in this process is genetics: if your father or mother had an early waxing of the strands, it is quite possible that you will have it as well.
However, if no one in your family has this characteristic, your hair may be turning white for reasons other than genetics. Find out what they are:
1. Vitamin B12 deficiency may be one of the reasons
Vitamin B12 also called cobalamin, is essential in the formation of our red blood cells and the proper functioning of the nervous system. In addition, according to some studies, such as this one performed in India in 2016, the deficiency of this vitamin may be related to premature hair whitening.
Although researchers are still not sure how the lack of this nutrient affects hair pigmentation, there are some clues as to why this happens. The proliferation of capillary follicle cells depends on the synthesis of DNA, which in turn is dependent on vitamin B12. In addition, cobalamin participates in the stabilization of the yarn growth phase.
Therefore, it is important to include in the diet foods that provide vitamin B12 for our body, such as salmon, tuna, pork, liver, milk and egg products. Vegans and vegetarians may find it more difficult to maintain adequate levels of this vitamin, so supplementation may be necessary under medical supervision.
2. The cigarette ages the skin and hair
You already know that cigarette smoking causes a number of serious illnesses, such as emphysema and various types of cancer, in addition to contributing to the premature aging of the skin. And if you suspect that cigarettes can speed up the appearance of white hair, you’re right. In fact, there are scientific studies proving this.
Scientists are not yet sure how the cigarette makes the hair turn white, but just as in the case of lack of vitamin B12, they have a few hunches. The main theory argues that cigarette smoking is associated with the formation of free radicals, which harm the melanin-producing cells, the color-giving substance to the wires.
3. Stressful life: the debate continues
Another factor commonly associated with white hair at early ages is day-to-day stress. Although this motive is still called into question, this belief has found some evidence among the scientific community.
A 2013 study conducted at the University of New York showed that when subjected to stress, the mice tested showed an increase in the amount of white hairs.
This would be a result of the migration of the melanin-producing cells that leave their original location at the base of the hair follicle without substitute cells to produce the pigment that gives color to the hair. This abandonment would be caused precisely by the action of stress hormones, such as adrenocorticotrophic hormone.
Another line of researchers, however, argues that the results obtained in mice can not be extrapolated to humans.
However, even if there is an influence of stress on hair whitening, it seems to act only in people who already have a genetic predisposition to exhibit this characteristic. That is, the biggest “culprit” for their white hair before age 35 is still the family inheritance.