Olive Oil for Hair Growth
Since the time of the ancient Romans, olive oil has been used as a health product. People have claimed that olive oil can promote healthy skin, hair growth, aid digestion, and even cause weight loss.
Though not all the health claims about olive oil are true, modern research has supported the theory that olive oil may be able to prevent hair loss, and boost hair production when used either orally or topically.
Can Olive Oil Stop the Balding Process?
For people who are suffering from male pattern baldness, olive oil can be extremely beneficial.
Typically, male pattern baldness is caused by an excess amount of dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a hormone that makes hair follicle shafts shrink. Over time, this causes hair to grow in thinner and thinner strands which eventually start breaking off before they can even grow to a reasonable length.
Olive oil can actually slow down the body's natural production of DHT when it is applied to the scalp, so it provides a minor decrease in the hair loss caused by male pattern baldness.
How Does Olive Oil Prevent Hair Breakage?
One of the main benefits of olive oil for hair growth is that it strengthens hair follicles and shafts, preventing hairs from breaking off quickly. The fatty acids of olive oil make an ideal conditioner for hair, and when hair is properly conditioned, in bends under pressure instead of breaking and snapping off.
When applied to hair, the omega-6 fatty acid in olive oil prevents it from losing water in a dry environment. Since the body cannot produce omega-6 naturally, getting it from olive oil and other sources is the only way to get the hair boosting benefits of this type of fatty acid, and it also stimulates hair growth when taken as a supplement.
Another beneficial type of fatty acid is omega-9, which is also found in olive oil, because it makes hair more pliable and bendable. These moisturizing and conditioning effects (see video below) of olive oil prevent hair from breaking, so they are the primary reason that this type of oil is so effective at producing thicker hair.
Does Olive Oil Benefit Your Scalp?
A healthy scalp is just as important for hair growth as healthy hair.
Olive oil is an excellent source of antioxidants that promote scalp and skin health. Whether it is eaten or used on the skin, olive oil helps to prevent damage and soothe a dry, itchy scalp. Applying olive oil to your scalp will help to prevent dandruff, fungus, and other scalp issues that lead to dry, flaky skin. These conditions can clog up hair follicles, so preventing them with olive oil is extremely important.
Massaging the oil into your scalp will also improve blood flow throughout the area, so hair follicles are stimulated to grow thicker strands of hair.
What Are the Best Ways to Use Olive Oil for Hair Growth?
In general, olive oil can be used in two different ways to encourage hair growth, so it can either be ingested orally or applied topically to the scalp and hair.
If you want to eat olive oil to supplement your body's stores of omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids, it can easily be added to a salad, stir fry, or another type of meal. However, if you are one of the rare people who dislikes the taste of olive oil, you can also buy it in capsules that you can take daily.
There are countless recipes for conditioning your hair with olive oil, but they all follow a simple process. Olive oil should be warmed before usage, and then gently massaged into the scalp and hair. After leaving it on for an hour, it should gently be washed out with a sulfate-free shampoo, and a leave in conditioner should be applied to seal in the moisture even further.This procedure can be repeated weekly as a deep conditioning treatment.