While we all naturally shed a few strands of hair every day, serious hair loss can be upsetting and even embarrassing to those who experience it.

Around two thirds of men will be affected by male pattern baldness in their lifetime. However, hair loss is not just limited to men, as 40 percent of women over 70 experience it too.

While some people may be more genetically predisposed to lose hair, there are certain lifestyle factors that can both prevent and cause shedding.

One expert took to YouTube to explain how your diet could help prevent hair loss. Dr Eric Berg, revealed three specific foods you could try eating for this reason.

“This is not about taking another supplement, this is talking about your foods,” he said.

According to Dr Berg an amino acid called histidine is key in supporting hair growth.

He referenced a scientific study, published in the International Journal of Trichology in 2017, which showed a significant link between hair loss and histidine deficiency.

“In this published paper it went through various deficiencies that were found in a certain percentage of people with hair loss,” he said.

“And then I get to this one amino acid that was deficient in over 90 percent of people with alopecia and this amino acid is called histidine.”

According to the study, which consisted of 100 participants, histidine deficiency was seen in more than 90 percent of participants with androgenic alopecia (a common type of hair loss in both men and women), and 77.78 percent of participants with telogen effluvium (rapid hair loss caused by stress or a change to your body).

Dr Berg explained more: “This essential amino acid is a precursor to histamine, which plays a vital role in immune reactions, allergies, and inflammation.

“Deficiencies in histidine can lead to anaemia, while excessive intake can cause premature ejaculation.

“However, the right amount of histidine in your diet can promote healthy hair growth by helping to produce keratin and regulating copper and zinc levels.

“Certain medications and alcohol consumption may lower histidine levels in the body, while inadequate stomach acid can hinder its absorption from food sources.

“To counter this issue, betaine hydrochloride can be taken as an acidifier.

“But to fully utilise histidine, specific co-factors must be present, such as vitamin B6, proper copper and zinc ratios, and folate.”

He therefore recommended the “top three foods” to eat to prevent hair loss. These are:

  • Organ meats, including liver, due to the histidine and other essential nutrients they contain
  • Animal proteins, such as beef and chicken, are rich in histidine and other amino acids necessary for hair regeneration
  • Shellfish, particularly shrimp, scallops, and crabs, provide high levels of zinc and copper that can help maintain proper ratios in the body.

But Dr Berg advised against “going out and just getting it and taking” histidine as a supplement.

First you need to be sure you are deficient and understand why you are deficient, he said.

According to clinical nutritionist Dr Josh Axe, some signs of a histidine deficiency include:

  • Anaemia and reduced haemoglobin
  • Joint pain
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Fatigue and brain fog
  • Problems with growth in infants
  • Inflammation of the skin and mucous membranes and dry or scaly skin lesions
  • Poor kidney and liver function
  • Splitting hair, thinning hair and hair loss
  • Brittle nails
  • Decreased muscle mass
  • Impaired growth in children
  • Changes in weight and appetite
  • Decreased immune function
  • Bone loss
  • Puffiness and swelling.
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