Natural Remedies for Dandruff

At least eight million Americans deal with itching and the dry, flaky skin of dandruff. Relatively harmless in itself, dandruff is often a sign of some sort of imbalance. Typical dandruff causes include a hormonal imbalance, poor diet, or a yeast overgrowth, although sometimes it is simply the result of an overproduction of skin cells, which are naturally discarded as new cells generate.

natural remedies

While over-the-counter creams and prescription medications can be beneficial, they also can contain chemicals, such as selenium sulfide, which tend to dry out hair, possibly even contributing to hair loss. Natural remedies for dandruff provide both healing and nourishment for the scalp and hair, helping to minimize dry, flaky skin without any negative side effects.

Common Causes of Dandruff and Dry, Flaky Skin

Dandruff is a chronic condition that cannot be completely cured, although the effects can be greatly lessened with proper care. A healthy diet, along with the use of homemade and herbal dandruff remedies, can restore balance to the body as a whole and to the scalp and hair. What exactly causes dandruff? There are two different types of dandruff. One is essentially dry skin, known as pityriasis. This can be due to a lack of essential fatty acids and other nutritional deficiencies. The other is called seborrheic dandruff, which is actually caused by excess oil, generally from a hormonal imbalance, which clogs oil-producing glands and leads to a faster rate of cell shedding and renewal.

Nutritional Natural Remedies for Dandruff

Nutritional supplements and a well-balanced diet can be used as an effective treatment for dry scalp and dry, flaky skin. Essential fatty acids can be taken in supplement form with either flax seed oil or evening primrose oil capsules. The B-complex vitamins are also vital for dealing with the causes of dandruff as they are needed for healthy skin and hair, and to combat the negative effects of stress. Vitamin E is helps to improve circulation.

A diet focused on increasing the percentage of cleansing, natural foods, and limiting the quantity of fried, sugary, and processed foods is also essential for the treatment of dry scalp. Eat plenty of raw fruits and vegetables, vegetable protein, and sulphur-rich foods such as lettuce, oats, green peppers, eggs, and wheat germ. Reduce animal proteins, dairy, and white-flour based products from the diet. Yogurt and other cultured foods should be eaten regularly to increase beneficial bacteria in the body.

Herbal Dandruff Remedies for the Treatment of Dry Scalp

Herbs can also be used as natural remedies for dandruff, either as topical solutions, or even taken internally. An infusion made from thyme, as well as a combination of yarrow and rosemary works as an excellent treatment for dry scalp. Aloe vera gel, which acts as a natural antiseptic and anti-inflammatory, can be rubbed into the scalp, twice daily, until the condition improves. Also, natural shampoos made with aloe vera, or other beneficial herbal dandruff remedies such as jojoba and tea tree should help.

Homemade topical remedies for dry, flaky skin can be applied to the scalp for 10 to 30 minutes before showering, and then rinsed off. Bay leaves steeped in olive oil, fresh ginger juice with sesame oil, or peanut oil with lemon juice are all useful natural remedies for dandruff.

Also, detoxifying herbs, such as red clover and dandelion can be made into an infusion and drunk up to three times a day to help the body remove toxins and return to a state of balance. A combination of a healthy diet, herbal dandruff remedies, and even moderate daily exercise to improve circulation should reduce dry, flaky skin and also nourish the skin, hair, and body.

Sources:

Balch, Phyllis A. “Prescription for Nutritional Healing.” Fourth Edition (Penguin Books, 2006).

Page, Linda. “Healthy Healing: A Guide to Self-Healing for Everyone, 11th Edition” (Traditional Wisdom, 2003).