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Will I lose my hair following Bariatric Surgery?

Alopecia, or hair loss, can occur from any type of rapid weight loss. As your body loses weight, it “starves” for protein.  If you do not supply enough protein in your diet, your body will begin to “take” protein from natural storage sites – mostly, your hair, nails, and muscle.  Following Bariatric Surgery, patients tend to lose more weight at the beginning of their postoperative course, and some will have malabsorption of vitamins and minerals.  Both Zinc and Iron have important roles in hair growth and maintenance. Therefore, it is necessary to achieve your daily protein goals from the beginning of your postoperative course, and to follow up with any blood work requested by your Bariatric Surgeon.  Foods rich in Zinc include oysters, shellfish, wheat bran, pine nuts, pecans, and liver.  Foods rich in iron include liver, shrimp, oat and wheat bran, sesame seeds, and cashews.