Q: Dear Dr. Mao,
How can I have lustrous, shiny hair?
A: What you put in your body is reflected by the condition of your hair. Medications, smoking, alcohol, poor nutrition, and lack of sleep may result in weak, dry, and brittle hair.
Here are a few guidelines to follow for healthy and shiny hair:
1. Eat a balanced diet of whole foods including omega-3 fatty acids and flax seed oil.
2. Include adequate Vitamin E, found in foods such as brown rice, nuts, wheat germ and green leafy vegetables.
3. Refrain from brushing wet hair unless it is extremely slick with conditioner or a detangler. Brushing hair when wet can stretch and break it.
4. Bleaching, straightening, and blow-drying are all damaging to your hair.
5. Use conditioner daily. With shampoos and conditioners, it is good to keep in mind that you wouldn’t want to use products externally that you wouldn’t ingest internally.
6. For especially dry hair, use mayonnaise for conditioning. Really work it into the ends of your hair, and avoid the scalp if you have an oily scalp. You can use a shower cap to keep the mayonnaise on your head for a few minutes.
7. For especially shiny hair, you must get off the residue left from shampoo and other hair products.
You may also find the specially formulated Traditions of Tao herbal supplements “Hair Nurture” and “Hair Tonic” to be helpful. Of course, discuss with your physician before beginning any new health regime.