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Soy was behind my hair loss of many years!

Discussion in 'Success Stories and Positive Outlook' started by Mane_Trouble, Apr 11, 2012.

  1. Mane_Trouble

    Mane_Trouble Guest

    Hi all,
    I've been a member of this site for quite a number of years. I'd been experiencing thinning hair for at least a decade which forced me to go into a topper in 2006.

    Well I finally found what at least part of the cause was in my case. It's hard to believe after all the strife and wearing of a topper for consecutive years, but approximately 9 months ago, I noticed renewed hair growth and less of a need to wear the topper. I was stunned! I had already given up on ever finding an answer - I thought I'd be in toppers/wigs for life. But in summer of 2011 I got to finally return to a hair salon, get my hair dyed and be told that I did not appear to have thin hair anymore.

    So what do I find the cause to be? Well I had been eating alot of gluten-free foods and avoiding lactose because I was experiencing gastrointestinal problems. I was drinking coffee each day and adding not milk, but soy milk. Can you guess what I was ODing on? It was soy. I hadn't thought anything of consuming soy. It was touted as healthy by the USDA and it's supposed to help hair right? WRONG!

    Thankfully I kicked my coffee habit at the beginning of 2011. My consumption of soy dropped off quite dramatically. By the summer of 2011 my hair was rallying again and growing.

    I also witnessed an improvement in my thyroid tests. I was by no means hypothyroid - my TSH had always been below 2.0. However, my T4 had gone to the low side of normal range. Well it improved in 2011. Better thyroid function.

    If you are experiencing hair loss, I strongly encourage you to cut out soy in every form you can. Again, I was not hypothyroid at all but what I was eating did appear to affect my thyroid function. Not only that, it was making my pudgy. Cows are fed corn and soy to fatten them up before they are killed. Don't treat yourself to the same diet. If you want to learn more about the downside of soy, do go to Dr. Mercola's site and read up. I so much wish I had years ago when it was emerging that processed soy and soy derivatives are anything but natural and are not fit for human consumption. I thought I was eating healthy when I was just poisoning myself and my hair.

    Anyway, there you have it. I have not worn my topper for 9 months. I proudly wear my natural hair and am so grateful to have the freedom not to hyper-obsess about it anymore. This has been an unexpected victory which I never anticipated a few years ago.

    So here's my testimonial. I whipped hair loss for now. Stop eating soy. Read food labels because you will discover it in the majority of processed foods.
  2. neencali

    neencali Guest

    interesting. I gave up all non paleo foods (except chocolate) about a month ago. no grains, very little dairy products, organinc veg and meat and lots of water. I also gave up all artifcial sweetners in november. My hair too is growing back. I am convinced that some of us are more prone to problems with processed foods and like the paleo thinking.
    The only think I am still having difficulty with is coffee. I am using almond milk without soy.
  3. Arisemysoul

    Arisemysoul Established Member

    Aug 11, 2011
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    My integrative doctor. strongly suggested I go yeast free. I have a lot of symptoms with one being hair loss. I just can't even wrap my mind around avoiding yeast. But you would think if it would help my hair loss I would be all over it. I hope to start soon. Part of my fear is that my current hair loss started when I lost 35 lbs. rather quickly and the wrong way. I did eat healthier but also skipped meals, etc. My hair started shedding like crazy. So I am hesitant to start this yeast free thing because I know I will lose weight. Which, btw, I need to do. Just scared because I don't have much hair left to lose ;) :dunno:
  4. Kikawow

    Kikawow Guest

    Maybe that was not the soy in itself but all the GMO contained in it ?
    I started to use soy about 2 years ago, when I became vegetarian, so my hair loss was already severe wayyyyy before that. Now I am vegan and my hair loss is not worse at all.

    But it's something that crossed my mind several times, could it be because of what we eat, our environment ? I see more and more women with this problem (or am I just paying more attention ?). Maybe it has to do with all these chemicals in our beauty products, hair products, food (pesticides...) ?
    I switched all my beauty and house cleaning products a long time ago, they are all cruelty-free and environemental friendly. (Seventh Generation, by the way, love this brand).
    Barbarina likes this.
  5. Mane_Trouble

    Mane_Trouble Guest

    I strongly suspect that it was the soy - mainly because my T4 /T3 levels improved suddenly, and since fall I've especially avoided soy as much as I can. I cut soy out rather drastically, whereas I still continued with eating other processed foods.

    In the last decade, more and more additives and chemicals have been slipped into our food supply haphazardly by corporations. That it may be manifesting in women as hair loss seems like a very likely result to me. Soy seems like an especial culprit though because it suppresses the thyroid, which can cause hair loss.
  6. Mane_Trouble

    Mane_Trouble Guest

  7. LadyGodiva

    LadyGodiva Guest

    Congrats on the regrowth, Mane_Trouble! :punk:

    I've had a different experience with soy, and I'm not sure which came first...the chicken or the egg.

    Ever since 1995, I developed lactose intolerance (LI), overnight. I literally went from drinking milk to having severe you-know-what reaction to milk the very next day, and the day after. Anyway, I realized I had somehow become LI and turned to soy milk. Over time, my body began rejecting cheese, too. I switched to soy cheeses. By 2000, I was also consuming many soy "meatless" chicken or burgers. It was soy everything, and I was fine. I think.

    In October 2010, I had become fully vegetarian (for a year) and consumed soy everything. But since my hair loss, which had begun as a reaction to Synthroid in June of 2010 and had not stopped since (even once I stopped the meds), and my thyroid levels showed fluctuations, my mom suggested I stop eating soy altogether/go back to eating real meat, as it all may have aggravated my continued hair loss. Since then, I basically avoid soy products now, except for the very occassional Edamame in my salad. I drink almond milk and eat goat cheese, or no cheese. No more soy.

    Anyway, I'm now not sure if the soy was suppressing my thyroid levels all these years, or ended up causing havoc with the gland in the first place, or made me estrogen dominant, or did something bad to my body...or not, but I know soy must have played a huge part in my body make up all these years. I'm not sure of its specific effect or what its absence is doing to my body now. I have to say, though, I had great hair all those years eating soy. Was the soy making my hair so great or was my hair genetically healthy but the soy messed up my system over the years, including my hair recently? I don't know. But my hair hasn't begun growing back being off soy for the past year... :dunno:

    But I am glad that cutting out soy has helped your hair. That's awesome!
  8. Kikawow

    Kikawow Guest

    Well, eating soy-everything might not be very good for health, I don't know ... I always thought that no matter what we eat it has to be balanced and with measure.
    The soy I eat is from tofu mainly and occasionnally soy cream. But for the milk I much prefer almond and rice (yummmmm !). And I eat tofu maybe once a week. The rest of my food is full of veggies and delicious grains, cereales, hummus, tapenade, pita, bulghur and other delicious Meditteranean yumminess. I'm hungry now :mrgreen:

    I once read that soy would be a DHT blocker also ... so I don't know, we hear a bit of all I think.

    Yes, the processed food crap they want to make us eat plus all the chemicals in every single product we use, probably have effects on the long-term. The only processed-food I eat is for my lunch at work, but I choose the organic Amy's frozen lunch. I don't know if it is perfect but I sure try to minimize the amounts of chemicals in my body.
  9. JeHope

    JeHope Established Member

    Sep 21, 2011
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    Great news Mane_trouble!

    It's so ironic that you just posted this, because I just recently discovered that I cannot digest soy. I've been bloated & had some serious digestive issues for awhile and could not figure out what was making me feel so terrible.

    A few days ago I bought soy crumbles (it's like imitation ground beef, but all soy) & was so sick to my stomach all day/night after I ate it, and I am convinced that it is the culprit of all my digestive problems! And yes soy is in EVERYTHING! I hope cutting it out will have a good effect on my hair like it did for you. :)
  10. electricwarrior

    electricwarrior Established Member

    Aug 30, 2011
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    Wow, thanks for posting your progress Mane!
    I think anyone experiencing hairloss should definitely examine nutrition first and foremost. Part of my crash diet last year was swapping out foods for soy; Silk creamer(about a pint a week) instead of dairy creamer, Gardenburgers, and Amy's Organic products with soy protein for example..
    During my frantic research stage of hairloss, I did read a bit about soy, how it can mess with/replace hormones etc. I immediately cut it out, and months later started to see recovery myself.
    It is very insidiously added to many food products including almost all processed, frozen, and fast foods. A Mickey D's patty for example, at least 25% soy.
    So once again, thanks for adding to the positive section, and reinforcing hope in myself and others. Also, for raising awareness regarding nutrition. :heart:
  11. Arisemysoul

    Arisemysoul Established Member

    Aug 11, 2011
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    LG, I take Armour as my thyroid is out of whack also. More my T3/T4 than my TSH. Anyway, I'm not suppose to eat soy with the thyroid med because it inhibits it ability to work. Wonder if it is the same for Synthroid?
  12. Sunflower25

    Sunflower25 Guest

    I cut artificial sweeteners and mine came back. Like you, it was something I was ingesting every day. I had some on accident and I lost a spot of hair. If you think soy was the cause, be careful and read your labels! :)
  13. LadyGodiva

    LadyGodiva Guest

    Maybe? Although I really do believe Synthroid itself did not agree with me. I may try Armour or Natur-throid, or even a T3 like Cytomel. I just don't know which one I need....and neither do my doctors. :thumbdown2: In any case, I dunno if soy was helping me all these years or hurting me. Difficult to know.
  14. martinzg

    martinzg Guest

    Very interesting. My granddaughter has had alopecia aerata since 2005. She switched to soy at 7 mos when her mommy could no longer breast feed her, after discovering she had a sensitivity to to baby formula. We continued her on soy formula until age one when she slowly coverted to regular soy milk. She drank that until about age 3. She's now 7.

    When she was 10 mos old, we saw her first dime size patch of hair loss. That's when her pediatrician told us she had alopecia aerata. By age 2, she had 95% loss. She is now using betametasone valarate lotion .1% and Rogaine Foam for men 5%. It has helped tremendously for 5 years but now she is starting the patchy cycle again. We fear she may continue in this cycle throughout her life.

    I think I will suggest to her mom that we try and eliminate soy completely from her diet. She is a well adjusted child at this point. But, her preteen years are just around the corner and children can be terribly hurtful to those who are noticeably different.

    I do wonder how much of this is nature versus nurture (i.e., diet). Thank you so much for your personal insight.
  15. Emily_Sea

    Emily_Sea Guest

    I'm really glad that someone has brought-up nutrition, although I am sure it is a common topic on the site. I think, for some of us, we are very predisposed by our genes, but, hair genes may have switches, which require something to turn them on. Other girls, perhaps just hormones, allergies/intolerance, or autoimmune predisposition. I am really hoping that the future fulfills its potential and, not only will there be a hair loss cure, but so many other unsolved chronic illnesses will be addressed at the root (hehe pun!) and not with medications. Meds can help, but they can also screw us up bad. I'm quite certain that antidepressants initiated my hair loss. But I have friends at 22 years old experiencing chronic pain and fatigue. Something is wrong, y'know?
    There are people out there starting to understand that a) we all have different genes and need customized health regimens to best serve our genetics, and b) we all undergo different experiences and encounter different things that may change our chemistry, and again, we will have to be addressed according to our own personal body composition. I wish I could say I had myself all figured out, but I make minimum wage and naturopaths, thyroid testing, food intolerance testing, healthy eating etc is all so expensive. And honestly, I tried to go Paleo, and I lost 20 pounds, but my skin went absolutely bonkers and now I have old looking skin and acne AND hair loss. My skin was more oily, but really clear when I was eating vegan pancakes with maple syrup every day. Go figure.

    If you know something changed when you started eating one singular food (for me, too many eggs make me breakout and it's OBVIOUS), and you can change yourself for the better by removing it, that is FREAKING AWESOME. But it's also really upsetting that, for most of us, we just don't have the medical technology, know-how, or funds at our disposal to dig to the bottom of things. At one point I thought I had to do this big elimination diet and find what was perfect for me and take every single supplement ever, but...it's really difficult, it's really expensive, and without being sure of anything, it's potentially dangerous and a waste of time.
    And that's so depressing. Because I believe that we really can understand our bodies on a deeper level using the technology that we have. But it will be awhile before it's common place. If ever. The pharmaceutical companies have so much invested in our taking pills. And it works for them. I take Spironolactone because figuring out exactly what's causing my acne and hair loss is too gigantic of a labryinth.

    I really try to eat healthy with foods that I know I can handle, but if I can't really know, I'd rather let go, accept the way I look, and try to be as healthy as I can be within what knowledge I have. I've done TOO MUCH research, and you start to realize that there is no one size fits all and no real answers.

    Like I said, I hope that people are much healthier in the future. Although, my pessimism kind of gets the best of me.
  16. Losin it

    Losin it Guest


    I just wanted to say that I love the quote at the bottom of your posts!
  17. neencali

    neencali Guest

    Sunflower25. I too think artificial sweeteners were the problem for me. I gave up spenda when this all started but not aspertame and stevia. I now have stevia now and then but it brings my itching back so I don't trust it either. I will stick with good old fashion sugar.

    I was ingesting tons of the garbage. lots of spenda in coffee two times a day then again in a frap in the afternoon. and also in 2-4 diet pepsi a day with asperame and stevia on my cereal. I wasn't any thinner from it all but my hair is.
  18. waterbaby

    waterbaby Guest

    Why are so many young women suffering from hair loss, PCOS and thyroid problems these days?

    Because they were fed soy formula when they were babies perhaps? Estrogen level is so high that it's like feeding babies birth control pills.

    http://www.livestrong.com/article/11635 ... t-formula/

    FIVE birth control pills a day in fact according to one source in that article. :freaked2:

  19. is this it

    is this it Guest

    This is interesting!

    I have been a vegetarian since I was 12 (16 years!) A large part of my diet was soy. I had thick, thick hair all of those years! Then, at 27, my hair starts evacuating my head. Iron, dermatitis or Plan B have been the main culprits. I lost a clump in the shower a couple of weeks ago and pretty much resigned myself to wearing a wig. Then a friend of mine tells me that her sister started losing hair and cut out soy and it grew back.

    I'm on the fence. I'm almost vegan (as a result of my fiance being a vegan. We keep yogurt in the fridge for our son, but I have IBS, so I try to limit my dairy consumption. Really, I only eat dairy if it's in baked goods, as where my mum's family comes from (Scotland) a great deal of our baked goods are stuffed with butter and I really can't envision rainy days without tea and shortbread highlanders ;) ...) Non-processed tofu (tofu I flavour myself at home, tempeh) is a large part of my diet. Sometimes I eat Tofurky, but this is maybe once every two weeks.

    But maybe I should give it a try...
  20. TCM1848

    TCM1848 Guest

    Hi Mane,

    Question: Why did you stop eating soy? Did your doctor suggest it after tests, or did you decide to do it on your own?

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