Before I start, let me mention that though I want, predominantly, to hear from people who are familiar with Danny Roddy/Ray Peat, I would appreciate any advice on hair loss!
I have been experiencing hair loss recently, and I suspect its a result of my decreased appetite/heightened hunger awareness (hence eating just 2 times a day), combined with stress. I eat paleo + dairy (full fat, fermented, raw when I can find it/minimally pasteurised).
I need to sort this out before it gets worse. I'm a model and I really can't lose my hair. Besides, its making me so depressed. I am trying to increase calories as much as I can in two meals, though keep in mind that I can't just go wild with this as I need to maintain my dress size.
So I've come accross Danny Roddy's weblog, and thought I'd give some of his recommendations a try. However, I have a problem with some bits of his recommendations. Bear with me:
What he recommends is dairy, namely milk; he emphasizes fruit over vegetables; he also recommends sugar, orange juice, raw carrots; he says avoid grains, legumes, nuts, seed oils; he recommends shellfish, liver, and gelatinous cuts of meat such as oxtail over de-animalized muscle meat.He says, eat fat, protein and sugar together.
So, the bits I have no problem with: obviously paleo-friendly things like gelatin, more shellfish & organs, are all recommended anyway; dairy (I have, up to now, used mainly cream; I can source organic full-fat buffalo milk from a local farm, so I could give that a try); avoiding nuts - I don't eat very much of them anyhow; seed oils - I avoid like the plague
Now, the carbs: I've been thinking of upping carbs a little anyhow, since I have no weight to loose, I work out a lot, and I have no appetite - and more carbs often increases appetite. I am not 'orthodox paleo', but closer to sticking to traditional, real foods - think 'nourished kitchen', or Weston Price (minus the grains).
On the flip side: I do not want to eat sugar as he recommends; there can be nothing good about white sugar, an isolated, processed ingredient. It isn't real food; besides, though I want to increase carbs a bit (with an eye on the scale) I don't want to gain fat, and sugar might do just that. Neither do I like the idea of drinking fruit juice.
I think that simply adding milk (has lactose), perhaps some raw honey or dates, starches such as sweet potatoes and squashes, and whole fruit (e.g. an orange - preferably a blood orange, more colour more nutrition - rather than friggin juice) would do to both stimulate my appetite a bit so I can go back to having three meals a day, and help boost hair growth.
Let me mention, also, that I am not the type to be easily sold on things, but this helped Danny himself reverse his hair loss, and a lot of what he says about hormones, nutrition and hair makes sense; however, I am a strong believer in traditional eating and I don't think its necessary to consume industrial foods (which early man/peoples in traditional societies would not have had access to, and from what I see in pictures of traditional peoples, with their long shiny hair, they don't suffer from hair loss!). So, especially those of you who have tried/looked into Ray Peat and Danny Roddy's work, what do you think? Can I adapt a whole/real/traditional food diet to Danny's ideas?
Thank you for bearing with this long question, I'm not very laconic I'm afraid...and thank you in advance for insights, tips and answers...I'm really quite desperate.
If you are that worried about the whole thing, you really need to do some study. Make the decision for yourself -based on evidence, not speculation or fear.
Read Danny's whole entire blog, buy his book, or even pay for consult with him. Read up on Ray Peat. Listen to Ray speak on the East West Healing Podcast. There is even a ton of threads here on Paleohacks about both Danny and Ray Peat.
I think the reason's behind the dietary suggestions are valid, but that is because I have done my homework by studying the information presented on my own. But that being said, I think you are confused with your assumptions in regards to the application of sugar in the recommendations.
I have been eating 90% (very little liquid milk is my alteration) this way since August, and have seen some health improvements. Including in the hair growth department (although that is not an area I have been concerned with). Don't try anything before you research it and are comfortable with it. Even then, sometimes you just have to cherry pick what works best for you, and move on, always learning and researching.
Danny roddy's recommendations won't work well without the sugar. Its the main component of his diet. You could try to use rice or potatoes but OJ/sugar are much more therapeutic in my experience.
The number one reasons I see people getting bad results with a peat inspired diet is because they try to adapt it to there paleo/lowcarb dogma. Getting enough sugar to combat stress is the main component of the diet. You have to eat the right fruits too, strained OJ is recommended because the fibers can produce serotonin/endotoxin. Sweet potatoes are a big no no.
If you try to mold danny's recommendations to your paleo world don't expect to get very good results. You can definitely get benefits following some of the principals but if your looking for drastic results its all or nothing imo.
You eat butter, coconut oil etc.?? How are these any different than white sugar?
Did you see his 11 ways to hack your hair loss series? These are his 11 steps (though the last one is pretty stupid) :
1) Theory - Hair loss is much more complicated than the mainstream would suggest. Drugs like Propecia and Rogaine have poor success rates and life-altering side effects. Optimizing thyroid function (metabolism) and decreasing the stress hormones, serotonin, estrogen, prolactin, aldosterone, cortisol, and adrenaline should significantly slow down or stop hair loss.
2) Raw Carrot a day - acts as a natural antibiotic, decreases serotonin, estrogen, cortisol, and endotoxin.
3) Calcium - In the form of dairy, calcium can be utilized to increase metabolism and decrease numerous hormones and inflammatory triggers associated with male pattern baldness.
4) Saturated fats - Opting for butter, coconut oil, and animal fats will go along way in restraining stress and reversing hair loss. Oils made from fish, vegetables, and seeds can all be considered "anti-hair" and pro-inflammatory.
5) Protein - Protein is integral for structural repair as well as assuring proper estrogen detoxification. Gelatin is the best source of protein, due to it's lack of tryptophan (serotonin precursor). Oxtail, bone broth, and supplemental gelatin from Great Lakes Gelatin can be utilized.
6) Sugar - Sugar is needed in large amounts to support the metabolism. Using "fat as fuel" is suppresses the metabolism and the liver's ability to store and utilized glycogen. Fresh orange juice and even white sugar in the form of simple syrup can aid in increasing body temperature, pulse, mood, and vasculature.
7) Salt - Similar to sugar, salt can increase pulse and body temperature. Insomnia, anxiety, and blood sugar handling issues can also be aided by additional salt intake.
8) Iron - A perfect diet means nothing in the face of elevated ferritin (stored iron). Get your serum ferritin tested and discuss treatment with your physician.
9) Vitamin E - Vitamin E can be depleted by a diet high in polyunsaturated fats as well as high iron. Vitamin E depletion leads to increased levels of estrogen (anti-hair) and decreased levels of progesterone (pro-hair).
10) Caffeine - In the form of coffee, caffeine can be utilized to increase the metabolism as well as provide significant amounts of B1 and magnesium.
11) Overview - All of these steps are in order to maximize the efficiency of the thyroid. Malnutrition leads to a decrease metabolism and a rise in anti-hair hormones.
I think these are pretty clear (vitamin E can be applied topically). Coconut oil is great for your hair.
Apart from this, I don't think you'll find it very hard to apply this diet : you have to cook way less, it's damn tasty, and I don't really see why it wouldn't find in the paleo mindset/lifestyle. Everything he advocates is paleo, apart from the ice cream.