# Thursday, May 9, 2013
                 
Onions and BaldnessI must admit, when I first saw an article about treating baldness and grey hair with onion juice I had a good chuckle. My curiosity was piqued, however, and I decided to read further.

After doing some research I was amazed to find out that this idea actually had some merit! Turns out quite a few people have actually been using onion juice to treat baldness and grey hair for many years, especially baldness caused by a skin condition called "alopecia areata".

Scientific Research

A study was published in the Journal of Dermatology (June 2002, click here for results) regarding the use of onion juice to treat baldness caused by alopecia areata. One treatment group used plain old tap water to treat their baldness, while the other group used onion juice topically on their heads twice a day for a month. After 4 weeks there was hair re-growth in 73.9% of their patients. After 6 weeks there was hair re-growth in 86.9% of the subjects. Interestingly enough, re-growth was significantly higher for the men (93.7%) compared to the women (71.4%) using the onion juice treatment.

In 2008 Dr. Mike Sladden of the University of Tasmania conducted a smaller study, and he found that 60% of his test subjects experienced hair re-growth after applying onion juice topically to bald patches caused by alopecia areata (click here for more).

Why Does Onion Juice Work?

Alopecia areata is a medical condition whereby the body’s immune system attacks hair follicles, literally removing them from the scalp. Baldness tends to occur in patches, and hair loss occurs steadily over time.

Onion juice acts as a topical steroid, and boosts the hair growing ability of the hair follicles. This is likely caused by the high amount of sulfur found in onion juice. Sulfur has often been called the "beauty mineral".

In addition onion juice:
  • Provides much needed nutrients to hair follicles (e.g. vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium, potassium, germanium and of course sulfur).
  • Helps to eliminate germs, fungi infections and parasites that can contribute to baldness.
As an aside, onion juice also helps reduce graying hair by promoting the production of catalase, which is a naturally occurring antioxidant. (With graying hair there is a reduction in hair follicle catalase).

How to Use Onion Juice to Treat Baldness

The first step is to get some onion juice. You can buy onion juice online (do a search for "Howards Onion Juice") or you can make it yourself.

If you want to make onion juice yourself try the following:
  1. Peel the onions and cut into chunks.
  2. Put the onion chunks into a juicer and then juice them.
  3. Clean the juicer after using a couple of times to avoid clogging and waste.
  4. Store the juice in a glass jar and refrigerate.
  5. You can mix other ingredients with the juice to help alleviate the smell when applied to the scalp (see section below).
Note that fresh is the best, so making many smaller batches is better than making a huge batch and then storing for a long time.

My research indicates that it is best applied when the juice is at room temperature (not sure why this is). When applying the onion juice to bald patches let it warm up to room temperature, and shake well before the application. DO NOT heat the juice since that can destroy many of the juice’s potent qualities. Just take it out of refrigeration and let it sit for awhile.

When applying, massage your scalp gently, and let it sit for awhile. Some people leave it on for a short while (e.g. 20 minutes) and then shampoo it out, while others leave it on overnight (and others just add it to their shampoo). Generally speaking, the longer left on the better, although this may not be feasible for people who share their bed with a partner!

As to how often to treat your scalp, the common consensus seems to be twice a day. Results should be seen after 2-4 weeks of applications.

Getting Rid of the Onion Smell

Let’s face it: having a head that smells like a raw onion is not that appealing to people. Our wives and husbands might have something to say about it!

The following is a list of ingredients that can be added to the juice to help alleviate the smell:
  • Oil (e.g. olive oil, castor oil or even Aloe vera).
  • Apple cider.
  • Vodka.
  • Lemon juice.

Conclusion

It never ceases to amaze me how many natural products have powerful medicinal qualities, and this is one to add to the list!

If you are considering using onion juice to treat baldness (and/or graying hair) I strongly recommend doing your own research first as well as consulting a qualified medical practitioner.
  

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