Few weeks ago, I wrote on the reasons why people grow strands of gray hair Early in life. Some of the listed cause were:
Deficiency in vitamin B12
Some inherited tumour condition
Vitiligo: A condition that destroys pigment making cell in the scalp
Stress according to some recent research.
While genes and age do play role, you can slow down and even stop the graying process with some natural hacks. Our hair follicle have a pigment called melanin, which gives hair it black colour. Due to the listed conditions, it could alter the production of melanin or adjust the stem cells that makes hair loose that potential to grow black hair. A 2016 study offered another intriguing possibility — that targeting the molecular pathways that govern hair pigment could restore hair color.
Gray hair and catalase
In a 2009 study, researchers discovered that going gray is simply a buildup of hydrogen peroxide in your hair particles, which bleaches your hair from the inside. Yep, bottle blondes love hydrogen peroxide for its bleaching effect, but it’s also a chemical that your hair cells make naturally.
Here’s where things get interesting — usually, a hardworking enzyme called catalase breaks down hydrogen peroxide into water and oxygen. But as you get older, catalase production starts to slow down. The result? Hydrogen peroxide starts to accumulate in the body.
“Hydrogen peroxide plays a major role in essentially bleaching out the hair pigment centers,” says Ronald Peralta, cancer survivor and co-founder of hair supplement Nutrafol.
In a recent Bulletproof Radio (iTunes) podcast episode. “Gray hair is nothing less than a reflection of a reduction of catalase enzyme, one of the more potent antioxidants.”
Catalase isn’t the only enzyme that breaks down hydrogen peroxide. Glutathione peroxidase, the body’s master antioxidant produced by the liver, turns hydrogen peroxide into water. Because glutathione production lowers as you get older, it’s a good idea to supplement. To get more glutathione.
Hundreds of years ago in China a white-haired man became lost in a wooded area. He subsisted on the roots from one vine for several years.
One day he was discovered wandering the woods and returned to his people. A small miracle had occurred during his stay in the forest. His hair, once white, had returned to its former black color.
This ancient Chinese story explains why “he shou we” which means “man with black hair” is said to have the ability to change hair from gray or white back to it’s original color.
A 2016 study offered another intriguing possibility — that targeting the molecular pathways that govern hair pigment could restore hair color.By studying stem cells in mice, scientists at New York University’s Langone Medical Center found that a signaling pathway called Edn/EdnrB interacts with other pathways, particularly the Mnt signaling pathway. This process creates more melanocytes — cells that form melanin in the skin and hair.
The study was the first to find a link between these signaling pathways and hair and skin pigment. The findings suggest that developing a drug or other therapy to target these pathways may help bring back some color to gray tresses.
A topical cream called PC-KUS, described as a “pseudocatalase”, works on people with vitiligo — when your skin loses its color in patches. Like gray hair, scientists believe that vitiligo is also caused by too much hydrogen peroxide in the body. The idea is that PC-KUS mimics the effects catalase, as your body’s own production of the enzyme drops.
Vitamin B12 also is said to help restore hair to it original colour. Observing the fact that premature grey is also has a result of deficiency in vitamin B12. Kei says that premature greying due to vitamin B12 deficiency - or pernicious anaemia - is reversible if you increase your intake of the vitamin.
Though supplement of glutathione has been proven to help restore gray to black strands of hair and vitamin B12 as well. There are still contemplation on it effectiveness.