Can Cucumber Help Hair Loss or Hair Growth?'

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Question: I understand cucumber is good for hair growth and can prevent thinning hair but do I eat it or apply it to my scalp? If I apply it to my scalp, what is the best way to do this please? Thanks.

Answer: Hi, Angela. Whilst they may not seem so different, promoting hair growth and treating hair loss are two separate requirements.

CucumberCucumbers are packed with various nutrients that are good for hair health and encouraging healthy hair growth. These include pantothenic acid, vitamin K, magnesium, manganese, potassium, vitamin A, silica, sulphur, niacin and zinc. Whilst it is often applied topically for its soothing properties, these hair benefits can be obtained through including cucumber in your diet.

When it comes to treating hair loss, unless the cause of your thinning hair is caused by a specific dietary deficiency which eating cucumbers can assist in rectifying, they will not help.

There are a number of hair loss conditions which can cause hair thinning, many of which are temporary, affect the whole scalp and are caused by stress or hormonal fluctuations, for example. These temporary conditions can often clear up on their own within six months though treatment is also available to accelerate this recovery process.

The most common cause of thinning hair in women, however, is a permanent, hereditary condition called female pattern hair loss. This presents as gradual hair thinning around the top of the scalp, often it becomes particularly noticeable at the temples and parting which may increasingly appear wider than usual. Many women also notice a drop in hair density, especially if they wear their hair in a ponytail as it can feel thinner than normal. Hair loss treatment courses can be personalised to a woman's precise needs, based on her level and pattern of shedding, in order to stabilise this shedding and promote regrowth, often with compelling results.

In terms of hair loss prevention, if you have an existing predisposition towards female pattern hair loss then the best you can do is to follow a healthy lifestyle and avoid potential triggers such as stress, smoking and regularly drinking too much. Unfortunately as this is a genetically pre-programmed condition, once the relevant genes become active then the thinning will continue if left unchecked. If you are looking for hair growth advice, again, having a healthy lifestyle with everything in moderation and a balanced intake of the nutrients known to contribute to healthy hair growth (or a food supplement to top up if necessary), is the way forward.

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