ISSUE 75 May 2014 More Than Just Dandruff Seborrheic dermatitis is one of those dermatologic conditions that is just very common and widespread. You may recognize this condition as either plain dandruff, or as a dry, red and itchy scalp, or as a mounds of greasy scales and painful, bleeding scabs. But seborrheic dermatitis may be all of those things, and to make matters even worse it can be socially embarrassing. Run-of-the-mill dandruff is on the non-inflammatory spectrum of seborrheic dermatitis, in which only scaling and flaking are seen. A flaking scalp is one of the most recognizable forms of the condition. In severe cases, seborrheic dermatitis may appear as mildly reddish skin, along with fine, dry scaling in the brows, along the eyelid margins, sides of the nose, moustache area, behind the ears (skin cracking is very common there), below the breast, in the groin and buttock folds, and even in the navel. And in neglected cases, the scaly areas may merge into a larger area of yellow, greasy accumulations. The cause of the condition isn’t definitively known. There is no cure, but there are excellent treatments. Antidandruff shampoos containing zinc pyrithione (Head & Shoulders), selenium sulfide (Selsun Blue), or ketoconazole (an anti-yeast agent—Nizoral AF shampoo) are all good options. Contact a dermatologist if you suspect you need treatment. Impact. Insight. Innovation. WellToday this issue P.1: Your Hair and Your Health P.2: Healthy Hair Myths P.3: Understanding Hair Loss P.4: Recipe Corner and Eat Your Eggs What Does Your Hair Say About Your Health? The secret to shiny, thick, and strong hair isn’t always found in the right product. Our hair, like the rest of our body, needs the right conditions to really thrive. Check out what common hair problems can tell you about what’s going on in the rest of your body. Dry, Brittle, and Breaking Hair It’s not just too much coloring, blow drying, and styling that can lead to dry and brittle hair; the culprit can also be what is, and isn’t, on your plate. The secret to shiny, healthy, and growing hair is little more than a well-balanced diet, with plenty of vitamins and minerals. Iron, Vitamin E, and plenty of protein are particularly important for maintaining a healthy head of hair. Dandruff Though dandruff can certainly be the result of dry skin and conditions that cause dry skin like psoriasis and eczema, the most common cause of dandruff is actually skin that is too oily. Though some of these cases are genetic, a poor diet heavy in fat and sugar and low in zinc and Vitamin B can also be a factor. Stress, a weak immune system, neurological disorders like Parkinson’s Disease, and even not washing your hair enough can also lead to the development of dandruff. Dry, Limp, and Thin Hair Has the texture and the body of your hair changed significantly? Uncharacteristically limp and thin hair could be the result of an under-active thyroid. Check with your doctor if you experience this along with symptoms such as weight gain and fatigue. Graying Hair People have long connected gray hair with stress. While science can’t fully back that up yet, there is some research that connects premature graying to stress levels in people that are genetically predisposed to gray hair. However, for the most part, graying hair says very, very little about your health. Balding and Hair Loss Most men don’t need to worry about their health when it comes to hair loss. About 90% of male baldness is just the genetic straw you drew. Hormones can play a big factor for women since menopause and pregnancy can both trigger hair loss. Weight loss and eating disorders can also lead to shedding hair. Thyroid issues, stress, and certain medications can also be the culprit. Your diet can also play a major factor: not getting enough iron, protein and getting too much Vitamin A are all possible causes of hair loss. De-Stress at Your Desk: Office Yoga The Seated Forward Bend in a chair stretches the muscles of the back and relieves tension from the head, neck and shoulders. It is also a mild inversion so it may promote blood circulation to the scalp, helping to bring nutrients vital for hair health. Step-by-Step Instructions: 1) Sit on the edge of your chair with your feet flat on the floor and your knees bent at 90 degrees. 2) Separate your feet hip width apart or a little wider to accommodate your torso. 3) Inhale and lengthen the spine. As you exhale, begin to fold forward between the thighs. 4) Allow your arms to dangle downward, keep your shoulders relaxed and your neck elongated. 5) Breath slowly and deeply here for about 30 seconds or 5 long breaths. Healthy Hair Myths Debunked By now you probably know that washing your hair every day can dry out and damage your locks, which is why experts recommend only shampooing two to three times per week instead. What other long-standing hair beliefs can’t be trusted? Myth: Frequent trims make your hair grow faster. Cutting the ends of your hair doesn't affect the follicles in your scalp, which determine how fast and how much your hair grows. Hair grows an average of a quarter-inch every month, whether or not you cut it. Regular trims might make your hair look a little longer, though. Getting rid of split ends reduces hair breakage, and breakage is what makes hair look thinner at the ends (and shorter). Every eight to 12 weeks, ask your stylist to take off the minimum necessary to eliminate split ends. A cold-water rinse makes your hair shinier. Hairstylists love to spread this gospel. Their rationale: The icy water will make the cuticle of your hair close so it's flat (and light-reflective), not ruffled (and dull-looking). Your hair, however, contains no living cells. It doesn't react to cold (or hot) water, says chemist Mort Westman. Use conditioners and styling products that contain silicones and oils to smooth the cuticle. Limit damage to your hair from straightening treatments, hot tools, and frequent dyeing. If you always use the same shampoo, eventually it will stop working. You don't need to practice shampoo rotation to keep your hair clean. If you've recently started coloring your hair or increased your use of hot tools, it might be a good idea to switch to a more moisturizing shampoo. Otherwise, stick with your favorite as long as you love it. For healthy hair, brush 100 strokes a day. You've probably heard that rigorous brushing will distribute the natural oils from your scalp to add shine to your hair. Or that it will stimulate blood flow to your scalp and boost hair growth. Neither is true. In fact, brushing causes friction on hair, leading to cuticle damage and breakage, which makes hair lusterless and frizzy. Brush your hair minimally (only to detangle or style), and use the right tools—a wide-toothed comb or a paddle brush with ball-tipped, plastic bristles. Avoid boar-bristle brushes—natural bristles aren't uniform, so they're especially harsh on your hair and scalp. If you shampoo less often, your scalp will gradually produce less oil. No matter how frequently you shampoo, your scalp produces the same amount of oil. Cutting back on shampooing will have no effect on your sebaceous glands; genetics and hormones determine the amount of oil they produce. But it will cause dirt and oil to accumulate on your scalp and hair follicles, and could cause inflammation and irritation that might stunt hair growth. www.cnn.com This Month’s Q&A: Ask the Expert 6) Take your time as you come out of this pose. Slowly roll up to a seated position, with your head being the last thing to lift up. 7) Sit quietly and breath deeply for a few moments before returning to work. Q: Can pregnant women dye their hair? According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), hair dyes are probably safe to use during pregnancy because so little dye is absorbed through the skin. However, it is still important to be cautious, therefore many health care providers recommend that pregnant women not use permanent hair dyes during the first three months. While the absorption through the skin is minimal, the concern is that breathing fumes during the process could be harmful to the developing baby. Permanent hair dyes contain ammonia which has a strong chemical fume. The recommendation is to avoid hair dyes that contain ammonia. The chemical fume warning also applies to straightening products as well. Semi-permanent dyes or a highlighting process may be considered safer for pregnant women. With highlights, the dye is enclosed in foil and won’t be absorbed into the skin. Vegetable dyes such as henna are also considered likely to be safe for coloring hair during pregnancy. Hair Loss Understanding the Basics Hair grows everywhere on the human skin except on the palms of our hands and the soles of our feet, but many hairs are so fine they're virtually invisible. Hair is made up of a protein called keratin that is produced in hair follicles in the outer layer of skin. As follicles produce new hair cells, old cells are being pushed out through the surface of the skin at the rate of about six inches a year. The hair you can see is actually a string of dead keratin cells. The average adult head has about 100,000 to 150,000 hairs and loses up to 100 of them a day; finding a few stray hairs on your hairbrush is not necessarily cause for alarm. Trichotillomania, seen most frequently in children, is a psychological disorder in which a person pulls out one's own hair. Telogen effluvium is temporary hair thinning over the scalp that occurs because of changes in the growth cycle of hair. A large number of hairs enter the resting phase at the same time, causing hair shedding and subsequent thinning. Doctors don't know why certain hair follicles are programmed to have a shorter growth period than others. However, several factors may influence hair At any one time, about 90% of the hair on a person's scalp loss: is growing. Each follicle has its own life cycle that can be Hormones, such as abnormal levels of influenced by age, disease, and a wide variety of other androgens (male hormones normally produced factors. This life cycle is divided into three phases: by both men and women) Anagen -- active hair growth that lasts between two Genes, from both male and female parents, may to six years. influence a person's predisposition to male or Catagen -- transitional hair growth that lasts two to female pattern baldness. three weeks. Stress, illness, and childbirth can all contribute Telogen -- resting phase that lasts about two to three to temporary hair loss. months; at the end of the resting phase the hair is Drugs, including chemotherapy drugs used in shed and a new hair replaces it and the growing cycle cancer treatment, blood thinners, betastarts again. adrenergic blockers used to control blood As people age, their rate of hair growth slows. There are pressure, and birth control pills, can cause many types of hair loss, also called alopecia: temporary hair loss. Burns, injuries, and X-rays can cause temporary Involutional alopecia is a natural condition in which the hair loss. In such cases, normal hair growth hair gradually thins with age. More hair follicles go into the usually returns once the injury heals. resting phase, and the remaining hairs become shorter and Autoimmune disease may cause alopecia fewer in number. areata. In alopecia areata, the immune system Androgenic alopecia is a genetic condition that can affect revs up for unknown reasons and affects the both men and women. Men with this condition, called hair follicles. In most people with alopecia male pattern baldness, can begin suffering hair loss as areata, the hair grows back, although it may early as their teens or early 20s. It's characterized by a temporarily be very fine and possibly a lighter receding hairline and gradual disappearance of hair from color before normal coloration and thickness the crown and frontal scalp. Women with this condition, return. called female pattern baldness, don't experience Medical conditions. Thyroid disease, lupus, noticeable thinning until their 40s or later. Women diabetes, iron deficiency, and anemia can cause experience a general thinning over the entire scalp, with hair loss, but when the underlying condition is the most extensive hair loss at the crown. treated the hair will return. Alopecia areata often starts suddenly and causes patchy Diet. A low-protein diet or severely caloriehair loss in children and young adults. This condition may restricted diet can also cause temporary hair result in complete baldness (alopecia totalis). But in about loss. 90% of people with the condition, the hair returns within a Cosmetic procedures, such as shampooing too few years. often, perms, bleaching, and dyeing hair can Alopecia universalis causes all body hair to fall out, contribute to overall hair thinning by making including the eyebrows, eyelashes, and pubic hair. hair weak and brittle. www.webmd.com EXERCISE TIP Looks like your locks (and skin!) might benefit from a good workout too. Go from lackluster to luscious without sitting for several hours at the salon. Exercise gets your blood flowing, and that increased blood flow carries more oxygen to your skin. During exercise, the tiny arteries in your skin open up, allowing more blood to reach the skin’s surface and to deliver the nutrients that repair damage from environmental pollutants and the sun. These nutrients also rev up the skin’s collagen production, thwarting wrinkles. Exercise also helps promote blood circulation to the scalp and hair follicles, supplying nutrients to your hair. The oxygen-rich blood flow may rush antioxidants to the area, destroying free radicals before they can damage your hair. This encourages hair growth and controls hair loss. Upcoming Events 3 May — Cary, NC Cary Park 5K & Fun Run 3 May — Chapel Hill, NC Color the Hill 4K Fun Run 17 May — Charlotte, NC Charlotte Lung Cancer Walks 31 May — Raleigh, NC Dirty Girl Mud Run WEBHEALTH Use the following resources to learn more about May’s topics. www.aad.org www.nlm.nih.gov Recipe Corner Artichoke-Scrambled Eggs Benedict Excellent Eggs Research supporting the health benefits of eggs is piling up. And several studies, including a recent one in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found no link in healthy people between eggs and either heart attack or stroke. They have debunked the myth of unhealthy eggs. A great source of protein, eggs are loaded with four key minerals: zinc, selenium, sulfur, and iron. Iron is especially important, because it helps cells carry oxygen to the hair follicles, and too little iron (anemia) is a major cause of hair loss, particularly in women. Here are a few other reasons eggs are great: They may reduce your risk of cancer. Whole eggs are one of the best sources of the nutrient choline (one large egg has about 30 percent of your RDA). A study published this year found that women with a high intake of choline were 24 percent less likely to get breast cancer. Note: Choline is found mostly in the yolk, so feel free to ditch the egg-white omelets. Eggs keep your peepers peeping. Egg yolks are also high in lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants that have been shown to ward off macular degeneration. An omelet a day can shrink your waist. Louisiana State University system researchers found that obese people who ate a two-egg breakfast at least five times a week lost 65% more weight and had more energy than women who breakfasted on bagels. Eggs are more satisfying than carbs, making you feel full longer. Your abs eat them up. These little orbs contain a certain sequence of amino acids that makes egg protein easy for your body to absorb. Which means a hard-boiled grade-A is an ideal muscle-repair food after a butt-busting workout. All eggs contain the same basic good stuff, and the large ones pack only 72 calories each, so you really can't go wrong! WellToday Issue 75 May 2014 Roasted artichoke bottoms stand in for English muffins in this quick yet elegant meal. Substitute roasted mushrooms for the pancetta for a vegetarian option. Serve with roasted new potatoes or a tossed salad. View more egg recipes at www.eatingwell.com Ingredients 4 canned artichoke bottoms, (1 1/2 cans), rinsed 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided 3 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano, divided, plus 4 sprigs for garnish 1/3 cup chopped pancetta 2 tablespoons reduced-fat mayonnaise 2 tablespoons nonfat plain yogurt 2 teaspoons lemon juice 1 teaspoon water 6 large eggs 4 large egg whites 2 tablespoons reduced-fat cream cheese 1/4 teaspoon salt Directions Nutrition Information Servings per recipe: 4 Amount Per Serving Calories: Total Fat: Saturated Fat: Protein: Total Carbs: Dietary Fiber: Sodium: 282 19g 6g 17g 9g 3g 737mg 1 vegetable 2 medium fat meat 2 fat 1. Preheat oven to 425°F. 2. Toss artichoke bottoms with 2 teaspoons oil and 2 teaspoons oregano. Place them top-side down on half of a large baking sheet. Spread pancetta in an even layer on the other half. Roast until the artichokes are just beginning to brown and the pancetta is crispy, 12 to 14 minutes. 3. Meanwhile, whisk mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon juice, and water in a small bowl until smooth. Beat eggs and egg whites in a large bowl. 4. Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the eggs and cook, folding and stirring frequently with a heatproof rubber spatula until almost set, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and fold in cream cheese, the remaining 1 teaspoon oregano and salt. 5. To serve, divide the artichoke bottoms among 4 plates. Top each artichoke with equal portions scrambled egg, crispy pancetta, and creamy lemon sauce. Garnish with oregano sprigs, if desired. KYLIE ADAMS THOMAS, MS earned a Masters Degree in Exercise Physiology and is a National Academy of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer and Fitness Nutrition Specialist. She is also a CrossFit Level 1 (CF-L1) Trainer. She has worked as a wellness coordinator, personal trainer, and currently works as a Corporate Wellness Specialist for Benefit Controls where she helps create strategic wellness plans for corporate clients across the southeast.
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