Your genetic makeup is usually the main factor in hair growth, but exercising can also promote and maximize healthy hair growth. While cardiovascular exercise is obviously a great way to maintain a healthy and properly functioning body, the improved blood circulation allows the transportation of nutrients and oxygen to hair follicles, which is essential for growth. Where there's adequate blood flow, there is stimulation and growth!
This isn’t just hearsay either. Studies have been conducted that report the connection between blood flow and hair health. In a study performed by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital, results were seen in mice being treated with a protein to increase the size of their blood vessels. The mice had thicker hair that grew in faster thanks to the increase in blood flow. When you exercise, you are helping to increase that blood flow to the blood vessels which in turns leads to fuller hair.
Another reason exercise can lead to an increase in hair growth and retention is because it reduces stress. Stress is a factor in stunted hair growth and also premature hair loss. A study published in the leading journal of Experimental Dermatology found that hair loss can be tied directly to the stress level by way of the hormones the body releases when stressed. Stress increases cortisone, the hormone that is responsible for hair thinning. Exercise naturally lowers cortisone levels while increasing serotonin, the hormone that allows you to feel energized and happy.
When it comes to exercise, there are tons of reasons to get moving. From the heart healthy benefits to the improvement in your hair and skin, getting your exercise on is a smart move. While the weekly recommendations for exercise varies based on certain factors such as age and pre-existing conditions, the American Heart Association suggests at least 30 minutes of moderate activity five days a week. Of course, you should consult your doctor before beginning any new workout program to be on the safe side. The American Heart Association also reports that heart disease is the number one killer with stroke coming in at number five. Following their recommended guidelines, along with a healthy diet and certain lifestyle changes, can help lower your risk.
A few times a week on the treadmill for heart health, lower stress, and great hair? This is definitely a win-win situation!