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Trustinglife's avatar

What are the nutritional causes of dandruff and dry skin?

Asked by Trustinglife (6623points) May 18th, 2009

Yes, this is for me. I don’t like Head and Shoulders and that kind of stuff, and it’s for my beard as much as my hair. I want to know what’s causing it so I can eliminate the problem at its source.

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22 Answers

sakura's avatar

argh just lost my answer!!

Wiki recommends coal tar based or baking soda based products

The following link is to the NHS recommendations sorry if this isn’t allowed but just clicked the link button and it lost my answer!!
http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Dandruff/Pages/Introduction.aspx

Try using a more gentle baby shampoo instead of a harsher adult shampoo.

I know when my dog had dandruff the vet recommended putting olive oil in his food so maybe try introducing some oily based fish in your diet??!!!

Plenty of fruit and veg too – they say a good diet can help towards most medical conditions!!

Hope this helps – GOOD LUCK!

Facade's avatar

It might be the detergents in your products that’s drying you out. Try the natural products section in walmart; see if that helps.
Oh, and drink more fluids.

vaudevillian's avatar

I hear stress can be a cause.

btko's avatar

Stress is a big cause. Some nutritional solutions would be flax seeds, they have oils good for skin and hair.

Also if you buy some Jojoba oil and add a little to your head when you are shampooing it may help. Tar is supposed to help but it is a carcinogen… it’s up to you.

rooeytoo's avatar

I think often it is just a hereditary thing and there is not much you can do about it. Try more fish oil in your diet. Use something like Dove or a soap free shower gel. It is worse in the winter because of dry heat in the house and low humidity. I often use a topical oil, baby or coconut, on my skin before I towel off after a shower, then you wipe most of it away and don’t feel greasy, or else just use a body lotion. I see more products for men specifically but I don’t know if there is any difference. I use an olive oil based lotion because it is absorbed quickly, I hate feeling greasy!

Garebo's avatar

I would try flax seed oil, in particular Barleans, and I take it with cottage cheese (sulphur electrons) -see the miracle results this combination produced for German nobel prize biochemist Dr. Budwig in the 1920’s; unfortunately she was discredited by other competing cooking oil companies at the time.
There is many foods to combine it with, but this is my choice. I also would supplement with Biotin and fish oils.
I noticed a significant difference in complexion, hair and nails with this combo, but everybody is different.

Darwin's avatar

According to the Mayo Clinic , dandruff can be caused by styling products that can build up in your hair making it oily; a diet with too little zinc, vitamin A, B vitamins and fatty acids such as the omega-3s in fish oils; stress, which can affect many more aspects of your body; not enough shampooing or too much shampooing; or not enough sun or too much sun.

Dandruff may be specifically linked to an imbalance on the skin that allows an overgrowth of a fungus called malassezia, a yeast-like entity that consumes fat. Overgrowth of malassezia can be caused by a compromised immune system, illness, increased oil production, infrequent shampooing, neurological disorders, stress, or sensitivity to the fungus (essentially an allergy).

Dry skin can also be the result of being out in cold or very dry weather, having an underactive thyroid, diabetes, genetic propensity, and certain medications.

RedPowerLady's avatar

This is not an answer to your actual question about nutrition. But something that may be overlooked in this thread is the amount of time you spend brushing you hair. Brushing your hair daily is necessary to rid of dry skin/dandruff.

YARNLADY's avatar

It couldn’t hurt to talk to your doctor about it. You can explain that you are interested in making changes in your diet or such, and get some tips and ideas.

Trustinglife's avatar

@RedPowerLady I’m nearly bald on top, so I don’t have much hair to brush.

Interesting to hear that infrequent shampooing could be a cause – I’ll have to do that more often (on the hair I have left). Thanks everyone for the tips on nutrition as well.

RedPowerLady's avatar

@Trustinglife perhaps exfoliating the scalp in place of brushing?

Trustinglife's avatar

@RedPowerLady I googled it, but any tips on how you exfoliate?

RedPowerLady's avatar

@Trustinglife A simple home recipe is to mix some sugar with some soap (possibly shampoo) and rub it on then wash it off. This has worked for me but I prefer the store bought products (i know, how horrible). They sell an apricot scrub in the face wash section of most stores which is a wonderful exfoliant. This is something you can do whenever you shower. Of course you might try exfoliating only twice a week at first. If it works do not bump it up. If not then increase the amount.

If you are into herbal products then you can go to this website and just type exfoliate into the search bar. Face scrubs should work fine on the scalp as well. You might want to add some jojoba oil or coconut oil though after you exfoliate. A little bit goes a long way with that stuff. This site sells that as well but so should your local stores (at least the natural ones for sure).

http://mountainroseherbs.com/

My apologies, for some reason spell check is saying i’m not spelling exfoliate properly and I can’t figure out an alternate spelling

sakura's avatar

Exfoliate using a gentle loofah sponge!??

RedPowerLady's avatar

@sakura Oh ya. Duh! That’s a good one too! :)

sakura's avatar

@RedPowerLady sorry was a bit obvious and I wasn’t trying to be sarccy! I like your ideas too!! Natural and useful!! Will have a go at the sugar idea! I have used salt in the past on my body but his may be a bit harsh for the face!

YARNLADY's avatar

@sakura @RedPowerLady Baking Powder or baking soda, oatmeal, and cornstarch are all ingredients that make good exfoliants. Mix with a little olive oil, or honey, rub on, and rinse off completely.

RedPowerLady's avatar

@YARNLADY Good ones! I’ve heard of oatmeal before but completely forgot about it.

sakura's avatar

oatmeal and salt are good for chicken pox. Pour a load of sea salt in the bath (this stops scarring) and put oatmeal (porridge oats) in the end of a stocking and swish it around whilst the bath is running – this helps stop the itching!

Garebo's avatar

Great idea, coat yourself in honey than dust yourself in oatmeal flour with a pinch of salt, then go lounge out on the deck during lunch hour.

RedPowerLady's avatar

@Garebo I am literally LOL

sakura's avatar

@Garebo haha! Sounds like fun if it’s sunny you will bake and possibly be good enough to eat! :P

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