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How To Stop Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery

Tips For Minimizing Hair Loss

Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery

Although there are no proven methods to stop hair loss during this phase after surgery, there are supplements like biotin and zinc that help thicken or strengthen hair.

Following the bariatric diet and nutrition program, which calls for limited calories and diverse protein intake on a daily basis, is helpful in preventing long-term hair loss. Of course, you must be cautious not to add too much extra protein or you may not see the expected weight-loss results.

In addition to the nutritional recommendations, it’s essential to take a bariatric-specific multi-vitamin with adequate B vitamins, folate, zinc, and biotin. B12 and calcium citrate with a vitamin D supplement also are prescribed.

Regular follow-up appointments with your bariatric surgeon are important to ensure that your vitamin and mineral intake and your blood levels are normal. These visits also help minimize side effects, and theyre essential to long-term maintenance after surgery.

Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery Or Significant Weight Loss

Hair loss after a gastric sleeve can be reversed in most cases and even prevented. The first thing to remember is not to worry about it too much. Stress can make hair loss worse.

Its normal to feel alarmed by this change. But its a common side effect of gastric sleeve surgery or gastrectomy. It happens to over half of bariatric patients.

Prepare beforehand or start the right healthcare routine as soon as possible. Hair loss after a gastric sleeve will then in most cases be back to normal in a few months.

Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery

Now that you understand the growth stages of hair, lets look at reasons why you have hair loss after bariatric surgery. Typically the hair loss begins around months three to six after surgery and can last about six months. Surgery puts stress on the body. One of the ways your body deals with that stress is by putting more hairs into the resting phase, so it can allocate its energy on healing your newly-formed stomach. According to the Dallas Fort Worth Bariatric Institute, any hairs that were already in the resting phase when you have surgery are most likely to be shed first. When your hair does start growing again, its going to push all of those club hairs out, making you shed more hairs as it starts to grow new hairs.

RELATED CONTENT: Want to learn the 10 changes you need to make in your life to be successful with bariatric surgery? !

Other reasons for hair loss after bariatric surgery include low-calorie intake, hormonal imbalance, chronic diseases, low protein intake and even certain medications. When you combine these factors with major surgery and weight loss, it adds up to a lot of stress on the body, leading to hair loss. However, the good news is that, unless you have a chronic underlying condition like hypothyroidism, your hair will eventually grow back.

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Ways To Minimize Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery

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Hair loss after bariatric surgery is one of the most frequent fears I hear from those that just had weight loss surgery or are considering it. Many ask me How can I prevent hair loss?

To minimize hair loss after bariatric surgery, its important to understand why it occurs, and what you can do before and after surgery to reduce your risk of hair loss.

Changes To Your Vitamin And Food Needs Post

The Truth About Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery

After surgery, you will not be eating a whole lot of food at one sitting. Typically, your new stomach pouch will not be able to hold more than two tablespoons, or one ounce of food at a time. Also, your body will not be able to absorb as many nutrients from the foods you eat as before. Therefore, you will be at risk for vitamin and mineral deficiencies.

To prevent such deficiencies, you will need to take a complete multivitamin for the rest of your life. It will also be very important to ensure that you consume enough protein at each mealtime to meet your nutritional needs.

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What Causes Hair Loss After Weight Loss Surgery

One of the main causes for hair loss after bariatric surgery is the poor diet that follows the surgery. Most patients tend to have a very low-calories and low-protein intake after the surgery. This leads to many conditions, such as iron deficiency and underactive thyroid that play an important role in causing hair to fall. Furthermore, there are other common causes such as:

  • Acute illness as a complication of the surgery
  • Chronic diseases
  • Prescribed medication such as beta-blockers and anticoagulants.

What are the causes of hair loss after weight loss surgery?

Folic Acid And Vitamin B12

Studies about the role of folic acid and vitamin B12 in hair loss after MBS are summarized in .4). Two of the studies reported the outcome of folic acid levels. Because of heterogeneity among these studies , a fixed effects model was used to pool results. The result showed that folic acid levels were lower in patients with hair loss .6a). The overall analysis showed lower vitamin B12 levels in patients reporting hair loss .6b). The heterogeneity was high I2 = 88%, a random effects model was used to pool results.

a Forest plots of studies in folic acid. b Forest plots of studies in vitamin B12

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Coping With Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery

Choosing bariatric surgery for weight loss is a difficult decision. You probably tried every diet, lost and gained weight over many years, and finally decided after much thought that bariatric surgery was the best choice to get you on the right track to a healthier life.

In taking this gigantic step to improve your health, its important to know about some of the side effects.

Bariatric surgery creates a sudden change in your nutrition and calorie intake. With this, patients experience rapid weight loss but, unexpectedly, most experience hair loss as a side effect as well.

Were here to ease your mind that this is common and normal. And, it can be managed with help from your bariatric surgeon. Heres what you need to know.

Gastric Bypass Surgery Basics


Gastric bypass, also known as Roux-en-Y, is a surgery used to help aid weight loss. It basically involves the stomach pouch being made smaller and the intestines being re-routed.

During this surgery, the small intestine is divided, and the bottom part is attached to the new smaller stomach. Then, the top portion of the divided small intestine is connected to the small intestine that is located further down so that the stomach acids and digestive enzymes can mix with the food.

Because of this re-routing, fulfilling nutrient needs after surgery is very important. Otherwise, you can put yourself at risk for vitamin or nutrient deficiencies.

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What Causes Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery And How To Prevent It

by Dr.Ceyhun Aydoan | Aug 25, 2021 |

Of all the side effects that bariatric patients might face after the operation, hair loss is one of the most irritating ones. Of course, the main reason people undergo any type of weight loss surgery is to regain their health, but the importance of ones appearance is undeniable for patients, which is why hair loss is one of their biggest concerns.

Hair loss occurs for many reasons with or without surgery. But each time you face this problem, first you need to find its reason, otherwise, treatment is almost impossible.

What you will read in this blog post is all the possible reasons for hair loss after weight loss surgery, a more common type of hair loss, alongside the solutions that will help you get rid of it and feel better about yourself.

Why Hair Loss After Weight Loss Surgery

The hair loss from bariatric surgery is called telogen effluvium. It starts suddenly but seldom contiunes for more than six months. Telogen effluvium has to do with stress the body is feeling and hormonal changes that can occur. Stress causes more hair follicles to enter a resting phase. The hair in the resting phase at the time of surgery will likely be the hair you will lose.

Following gastric bypass surgery, our bodies must adjust to a lesser amount of calories. Only those organs that require nutrients the most will receive them. Hair is not among those organs.

Hair strands also retreat into a state of temporary suspension after weight-loss surgery and do not produce new strands.The condition is temporary, and you dont need to be concerned about losing all your hair.

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How To Prevent Hair Loss

While you may not be able to prevent hair loss after bariatric surgery, there are some things you can do to minimize it. First, make sure you are getting at least 60 to 80 grams of protein each day. We all know that protein is king after bariatric surgery and making sure you eat enough of it can help minimize weight loss. Second, make sure you are taking your bariatric vitamins regularly. Remember that you are not consuming the same amount of nutrients as you were before. You need to supplement with vitamins for the rest of your life. Third, get regular blood work. Your bariatric doctor should be monitoring your blood work for the rest of your life to ensure you arent deficient in any nutrients and check your thyroid levels. If you need to supplement with additional vitamins, make sure you take them regularly.

RELATED CONTENT: Want to learn the 10 changes you need to make in your life to be successful with bariatric surgery? !

You can also take vitamins specifically designed to help promote hair growth. My doctor recommended Natures Bounty Hair, Skin and Nail vitamins. They are gummy vitamins in a strawberry flavor and taste good. There are a wide variety of vitamins for this purpose, so find ones that you like and will remember to take regularly.

Or The Healthier Alternative

gastric sleeve mexico

Similarly, there are many hair loss supplements that can increase hair growth, including Pro Hair 1 and Pro Hair 2, both of which are Health Canada approved.

Pro Hair 1 uses traditional Chinese herbs and roots that speed up the bodys recovery process, healing trauma from surgery and reducing stress and anxiety post surgery.

Many patients also find that, in addition to renewed hair growth, they heal faster and feel less overall anxiety.

Pro Hair 2 uses clinically tested roots and herbs that have been proven to boost the bodys immune system and increase its ability to absorb nutrients, especially to the scalp and skull.

This results in renewed hair growth, in addition to an overall improved immunity. Many individuals find that they feel healthier and stronger after taking the formula, while also experiencing renewed hair growth.

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Hair Loss Has Many Causes

The most common type of hair loss after weight loss surgery is telogen effluvium. This can have nutritional and non-nutritional causes. Stress on the body can move more hair into the dormant phase which means a greater percentage of hairs falling out. Stress on the body can come in many forms, such as fever, infection,surgery, weight loss, deficiencies and some medications.

Why Do You Lose Hair After Weight Loss Surgery

There are a few reasons why hair loss is so common after bariatric surgery. The procedure places an enormous amount of stress on your body and can alter your hormones. After all, its a major surgery that completely changes your digestive system.

Additionally, bariatric surgery is intended to result in rapid weight loss, which can lead to hair loss. Other factors that may contribute to hair loss, include certain medications, hypothyroidism, chronic health conditions like liver disease, heavy metal toxicity, or inconsistent and inadequate eating patterns.

The type of hair loss that occurs after bariatric surgery is called telogen effluvium. Its actually related to your normal hair growth cycle, which has two stages. The first is the growth stage, called anagen, and the majority of your hair is in this stage at any time. The second is the resting phase, called telogen.

Hormone changes and the stress of surgery can cause more hair follicles to enter into the resting or telogen phase. This can in turn disrupt the normal hair growth pattern, leading to more follicles being released before new hair grows in. As such, you may see bald patches or areas where hair has noticeably thinned.

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Common Causes Of Hair Loss

  • Dramatic weight loss
  • Thyroid issues
  • Trauma

After weight loss surgery, you are causing caloric restriction and/or malabsorption of really important nutrients that the body needs. Naturally, there are going to be repercussions somewhere. After surgery, the body does the best it can to adapt to new changes and unfortunately hair growth is not at the top of the list. Although this seems terrifying, unless you have an underlying condition, you can count on your hair to grow back.

How Can Patients Recover From Hair Loss After Weight Loss After The Surgery If Occurred

Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery | Gastric Bypass hair loss after gastric sleeve
  • The first and most important step to recover from hair loss after bariatric surgery is to take care of your mental health and de-stress. About 5-15% of hair loss is due to the stress that accompanies the surgery and the recovery period afterwards.
  • Take multi-vitamin pills that are specifically prescribed for patients who are in the recovery perod from weight-loss surgery. It is preferred for the vitamins to contain B- complex vitamins, folate, zinc and biotin. It is also advised to support your diet with calcium citrate and vitamin D. However, despite the high importance of taking multi-vitamins post-surgery, patients are advised to avoid excessive amounts of Vitamin A and Zinc.
  • Patients are advised to consume at least 60 to 80 grams of protein every day. This can be achieved by eating high protein foods or by using liquid or powdered protein supplements to make sure they are not depraving their bodies from any necessary nutrition that can speed up the recovery process.
  • Patients must make sure to consume healthy and nutrient-rich foods every day to help their body recover faster.

Weight Loss Surgery Packages

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Incorporate Zinc Into Your Diet

If all of your efforts fall short and youre still losing hair, you may need to incorporate more zinc into your diet. Zinc is an essential building block of healthy hair. Be careful with your daily doses, however. Taking too much zinc can have adverse side effects on your health. Foods rich in zinc include poultry, oysters, and red meat.


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