I spent every waking moment of the last 7 months renovating my flat. It was mentally and physically exhausting work, but in the end it all came together. A few weeks after works were finished I looked in the mirror and noticed my beard. It had gone to shit. Compared to what it looked like before the renovations started, my beard had become thin, brittle and patchy. What the hell happened?
I quickly began researching the main factors influencing healthy beard growth. After several articles, I noticed the same points consistently cropped up. Then a light bulb went off (figuratively). Because I was so engrossed in getting the flat finished, I had completely neglected 3 basic yet important factors responsible for beard/overall health. Here they are.
Apart from genetics, the quality of your beard growth is largely determined by the level of testosterone and DHT your body produces. The higher level of these sex hormones you have in your body, the more virile you and your beard are likely to be.
At some point in life (usually around 30), testosterone levels begin to decrease. If you’ve reached this milestone, don’t panic, there are ways to boost testosterone naturally. One of the most effective natural ways to increase your body’s level of testosterone is by exercising. Resistance training such as weight lifting is said to be the best type of exercise to boost testosterone in both the short and the long term.
There is certainly some truth in the axiom ‘you are what you eat’, and this applies to beards too! Beard growth can be affected by the type of food you consume (or don’t!). If your diet consists mostly of take-aways, you can be sure that you’re depriving both your body and facial follicles of much needed nutrients.
For a healthier beard, a diet consisting of lean meat, poultry, fish and eggs is a great place to start. These foods are rich in protein which is one of the essential components of hair. Eggs also contain biotin, a vitamin which appears to improve keratin infrastructure in your body. Other important micronutrients which promote healthier beard growth include fatty acids and vitamins such as omega 3, vitamin C, zinc and iron. Seek out these micro beard boosters!
This might be a surprise to many of you (it was to me!). Having a good night’s sleep is important not only for normal brain function, but also beard growth. This links back to our buddy testosterone. The majority of testosterone release in men occurs during sleep. Therefore if you suffer from sleep apnea and/or have a poor sleeping pattern, then your beard growth may suffer as a result. So try get those 8 hours if you can.
You’ll be glad to know that I’ve recently implemented a lifestyle change in the hope of repairing some of the damage done to my physical, mental and bearded self during the renovations. I now go to the gym 3 days a week, eat more protein and micronutrients and try to get 8 hours of sleep when I can.
I’m one month in to my new routine and happy to report that my beard is on the road to recovery and looking healthier by the week!