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Old 19-12-2013, 06:34 PM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2013
Anorexia and Hair

17 year old girl, started restricting calories while playing in tennis team two years ago(age 15). lost a lot of weight in july~seeing hair is improving with my current diet and exercise routine.
My issue~I have some fat on my body that I want to burn off with cardio---i don't care about weight anymore---just want to tone my body---but i'm scared that my hair will start falling out again---it's still not half of what it used to be...when would it be safe to start working out without compromising my hair growth? i really miss my hair~it was my driving factor for recovery. i can't even imagine how i restricted myself, shedding all that hair...if i'd known what i know now, i never would have done it.
ANYWAY please give advice? do i wait until my hair is 100% back to normal? that might take several more months tho right? also--if u have experiences with hair loss due to restrictive dieting pls comment with your recovery, how long it took ur hair to grow back, encouraging advice...sometimes i feel like my hair will never go back to what it used to be---and i feel completely miserable...but i know it's just my pessimism and negativity that started all of this...I CAN AND WILL REGAIN ALL OF MY HAIR~ :)

Last edited by Tig : 19-12-2013 at 08:27 PM. Reason: Removing weight and calories.
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Old 19-12-2013, 06:50 PM   #2
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Just to let you know it is against the rules to post ED numbers like weight and calories, so it would be best if you edited them out of your post.

I would wait till your hair has recovered enough that you are comfortable with it before you workout properly. Perhaps you could just start off with some light exercise in the mean time but nothing to hard that will make you ill.

Perhaps you could look at taking a multi vitamin that helps with hair.

Here is a list of foods for healthy hair.

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Old 19-12-2013, 06:50 PM   #3
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Just so you know, specific numbers are against the rules, please remove them :) If you'd like to see the rules there's a sticky at the top of this board.

As for your question, it really depends on what you're doing with your hair. I lost a lot of hair but also dye/style it a lot as well which makes it weaker. Length is a factor too, the very ends of your hair are the oldest and therefore the most brittle and damaged than the newer hair at the top.

My best advice would be to keep on a healthy, well balanced diet with lots of fresh fruit/vegetables and water. Use good conditioning treatments on your hair and avoid over styling/dying or using very high heated things (like straighteners) often.

Get a good hair care routine and get enough of the good stuff in you and it'll show in your hair.

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Old 21-12-2013, 01:15 PM   #4
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It's completely normal for you to lose hair when struggling with eating disorders; you're not alone. When I was at my worse, I had to wear a wig because the majority of my hair fell out. When I started to eat again, I noticed my hair started to grow a little more. It's still quite fine but I don't have to wear a wig anymore :)


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Old 21-12-2013, 06:01 PM   #5
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Toning your body will require you to eat a balanced, healthy diet in order to exercise without losing weight. Technically, there is no reason why your hair should fall out again as long as you are eating enough to compensate for working out.

I also lost hair whilst anorexic, and it took about three-six months to get back to normal after I started eating healthily again. My hair is very short, though, so with longer hair it might take more time.

Do bear in mind that restricting your intake significantly is likely to lead to your hair coming out again - it sounds like your hair is really important for you in feeling good about yourself. Keep that as a good reason not to let the ED take hold again!

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Old 31-12-2013, 07:25 AM   #6
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When i say toning, i mean burning some fat wouldnt' that mean i have to lose at least some weight? And if I lose some weight I'm scared that my hair will fall off :/
I'm using natural Shea butter conditioner and Coconut/Olive oil regularly with scalp massages in order to hasten the hair regrowth...and I'm eating more than I used to...trying to eat eggs more and eat more protein...

I also have a bit of anxiety going on so whenever I see my thin hair I start panicking and becoming despondent. :/ It's hard to express how difficult it is to see your hair less than half of it what it used to be. No hyperbole here.
So again, my concern is that if I start exercising again in January, what if I lose some weight? :/ I don't want to lose weight, but want to burn some fat + get toned, but unfortunately I'm fairly certain that if you burn fat with cardio then u do lose weight.

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Old 31-12-2013, 07:26 AM   #7
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Do you guys know if castor oil is helpful? I see a lot of hopeful baby hairs...and I've heard castor oil speeds up hair growth.

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Old 31-12-2013, 02:31 PM   #8
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No idea about castor oil, but you certainly need a good, balanced intake in order to look after your hair. Eating protein and fruit/veg alone will not be enough - you'll also need some carbohydrates and fat.

If you think of toning as burning fat, then yes, to some extent you should expect weight loss and all the side effects which come with that. However, if you see toning as increasing muscular definition then you won't necessarily lose weight. In fact, you may gain it due to weight of muscular density, though you may appear slimmer and more toned. In order to achieve this, you would need to eat a healthy diet with plenty of protein and focus on exercise that strengthens muscles as opposed to cardio.

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Old 03-01-2014, 07:29 AM   #9
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But the fat on my abs would remain there?

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Old 04-01-2014, 12:06 AM   #10
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Hi there. I noticed you had a couple of different threads - it might be a good idea to keep everything in one thread because otherwise people don't get the whole picture. I'm sorry things are difficult right now, but I suspect the hair loss is related to not getting enough nutrition.

Toning would improve your muscle definition, but 'fat' can be quite stubborn, and the two are necessarily connected.

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