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Help Me Please

I've been a commited veggie girl for 3 years. i have had no problems with my diet untill just recently. My hair used to be suuuuper thick and now i'm losing abnormal amounts of it, my skin is pale and i'm always tired. My family is concearned and i'm getting bloodwork done.
It seems that lately i have been battling to get enough protein.
What are some tips or pointers that could help me out?
Thank you very much,
tommie :)

When they do your blood work, make sure they run an ANA. 

I don't think losing your hair is related to protein intake.  IN GENERAL, a veggie or a vegan who is eating a variety of foods to include soy, legumes and grains, doesn't need to worry about protein.  Americans consume about double the protein they need and this is one of the reasons we have so much osteoporosis in the US.  Too much protein leads to calcium leaching out of the bones.

http://www.vegparadise.com/protein.html
This is a website that specifically addresses protein needs of vegans, and tables to tell you how much protein is in specific foods.  This will help you confirm or refute if you are meeting your protein needs, and guide you towards better habits.  It is good information to know because often veggies and vegans are asked to "defend" their habits with regard to protein intake.  For some reason, omnis think that the only source of "high quality protein" is flesh.  Tisn't so!

I, too, am concerned that you are experiencing hair loss with constant fatigue.  These two things together can mean many things that have nothing to do with your diet.  Please let us know what you find out.

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I had the same problem. I was losing loads of hair, I think it was because I was underweight. I've put on some weight now so don't seem to lose much anymore.  Are you underweight?  If your tired too it could be iron.  Zinc deficiency also causes hair loss as does stress.  It could be a number of things so it's best that you get it checked out. If you are like me and don't like doctors of prescription drugs then see if you can find a naturopath who can give you some natural remedies and advice

I found some things you might want to have a look at
http://www.buzzle.com/editorials/2-15-2006-89080.asp
http://familydoctor.org/x2570.xml
http://www.aad.org/public/News/NewsReleases/Press+Release+Archives/Hair/McMichaelHairLoss.htm

I'm sure it's nothing serious.
Take care of yourself and keep us posted

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I agree that your hair loss probably has nothing to do with your protein intake.  Sorry you're having problems.  But, if you do want to increase your protein the best way I've found is to eat nuts - unsalted kinds - whenever possible.  I buy mine in bulk at a natural food store - soy nuts, almonds, etc. are all really good.  No need to buy the salted kind as the natural flavors of the nuts is really yummy.  Nuts are also a great way to increase fat intake - the GOOD fats.

Best of luck to you - keep us posted.  hugs

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Hey Hxcspacegiraffe,
When I first became a vegetarian, I had no clue about proper nutrition and kind of made up my own rules as I went along. I know you have been a vege for three years so you are not new to this, but balancing out your diet is key. During my first few years of being a vege I ate a diet of bagels, pasta, pizza, vege burgers, and lots and lots of grains. I really swelled up like a balloon! Luckily for me... I was running a lot, but even with running 3 - 5 miles a few times a week, in my first year of being a vege, I gained 30 lbs! I felt tired all the time and actually fainted one night on stage in front of 30,000 people ( I fell off my drum throne and hit my head on a monitor and cut my head open)  :-X!  It was at that time that I really started to read about proper nutrition. I knew I was doing something wrong and it was my body's way of telling me that I was not getting everything I  needed to function properly (which is why I fainted). I did a lot of research on line and cut out a lot of the junk I was eating, stopped drinking soda, etc. and started to be feel so much better. i also ended up dropping all the weight I gained  :). I really don't have any links to forward to you, but I'm sure there are many here that do!
Good Luck & Happy New Year!
-dave

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First thing that popped into my head was Vitamin B12. No scientific reason, just I think I've heard of this sort of thing before and that was the answer, but anyway, your blood tests should say if they are comprehensive enough.

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Glad you're going to the doctor. =) Please double check that they are measuring your folate, B-12, and iron levels - I've had iron-based anemia before, so my mind automatically jumped to the "anemia" assumption.

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Thanks for all the advice!  ;D
I followed your guys's advice, researched a lot myself, bought loads of vitamins and asked a few of my vegan friends. My hair is getting better now but I'm still tired(Iron maybe?)  I'm still getting checked by the Doctor and asking him some advice too. It was actually kind of funny when i went to to my great grandmother for advice on vitamins.haha. My great grandmother believes in HXC natural healing, as do i, but she knows a lot more than me so she directed me in what i might be missing in my diet.
Thanks a lot for all the help an advice
You guys are amazing :)
Happy New Year<3

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I agree with the first reply-- try getting an ANA (anti-nuclear antibody) test. A few years ago, I started losing my hair and feeling fatigued. After getting an ANA, I was diagnosed with lupus and was able to start adjusting my diet and lifestyle so I could feel better.

Even if you don't get an ANA, try yoga. It helps with my fatigue and sore joints.

Feel better!

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This definitely just happened to me over the summer. I got bloodwork done, and it turns out I was low in iron. Since taking an iron pill, my hair has stopped coming out in massive handfulls, and I'm much less tired. It's reeeeally done wonders, and I'd suggest you get the bloodwork just to make sure.

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Gah I am having this same problem!  I lost a lot of weight when I became a vegan...upwards of 25 lbs.  I had a lot of bloodwork done becuase of this and they determined nothing wrong with me....all my vitamin levels and iron other junk was right on track.  EKG was fine and so was that ANA test.  I am still underweight, but I've been slowly gaining some back.  So why is my hair falling out now?! What the heck?!

You have my deepest sympathy, and if you like, you can make a wig out of all my lost hair.  I'm talking like, handfuls a day!  And (TMI, I know) the other hair on my body is dissappearing as well.  It's scary.... :-[

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This question is addressed in the front pages of the Garden of Vegan. Sez it's most likely a deficiency in protein or zinc.

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Thanks for all the advice!  ;D
I followed your guys's advice, researched a lot myself, bought loads of vitamins and asked a few of my vegan friends. My hair is getting better now but I'm still tired(Iron maybe?)  I'm still getting checked by the Doctor and asking him some advice too. It was actually kind of funny when i went to to my great grandmother for advice on vitamins.haha. My great grandmother believes in HXC natural healing, as do i, but she knows a lot more than me so she directed me in what i might be missing in my diet.
Thanks a lot for all the help an advice
You guys are amazing :)
Happy New Year<3
[/quote

if you are taking iron, make sure you are taking vitamin c with it.  your body would easily absorb iron produced by meat, but iron produced my plants and iron vitamins are not easily absorbed by your body.  so for your body to absorb iron in the vitamins, or even plants, you should regularly be taking vitamin c or drinking LOTS of orange juice...

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