4 reasons why you might get gray when you are young

Melanin is the substance that allows hair to have its characteristic pigmentation. Gray hair is precisely hair that lacks melanin and therefore turns gray or white. There are many reasons why you might get gray when you are young.

Because over time the hair loses its pigmentation, it is expected that the phenomenon is typical of old age. However, you will see that this is not always the case.

In this sense, young people can also have gray hair and even be scared. Do not think that it is strange or that something bad is happening to you. There are factors that can influence the appearance of gray hair, such as stress.

Are premature graying associated with any disease?

This is a very common question, since the social perception we are used to is that gray hair is only linked to old age. But don't worry, we are going to explain to you if gray hair is really associated with a specific disease or if it is a normal scenario.

According to a study published by the NIH National Library of Medicine, the appearance of gray hair while young could be related to people who have a weaker immune system. However, there is still little research that has linked atopy (the hereditary nature of a person who has allergic reactions with a high frequency) with gray hair.

In this sense, there are some pathologies that may be affecting and causing gray hair to appear in stages in which it is not supposed to be common. We insist that it is nothing for you to worry about.

Most cases of gray hair when young are related to heredity. And the truth is that very few have to do with diseases. There are treatments that can be done to achieve normal hair pigmentation, although there is no proven effectiveness either.

The concern for the appearance of gray hair in youth should not be such, beyond an aesthetic reason.

Also read: 3 homemade tricks to cover gray hair

4 reasons why you can get gray hair when you are young

As we mentioned, there are multiple reasons that have nothing to do with serious illnesses why you can get gray hair when you are young. Believe it or not, this is a fairly common phenomenon.

1. Stress

Is he to blame for all evils? Scientists from Harvard University conducted a study in which it is specified that the sympathetic nervous system (responsible for responding to external threats) it is responsible for the hair follicles to remain without coloration. This encourages the appearance of gray hair on the scalp.

A situation that causes us large volumes of stress can cause the hair follicles to run out of melanocytes, the cells responsible for hair pigmentation. So, to begin with, if you want to avoid the premature appearance of gray hair, you must calm that state of threat.

Discover: Why do we get gray hair if we are stressed?

2. Vitamin B12 and mineral deficiency

The diet we eat is a factor that can greatly influence the appearance of gray hair when young. The deficiency of vitamin B12, folic acid, iron, zinc and vitamin D3 causes depigmentation of the hair.

That is why what is recommended is to include foods such as the following in the usual nutritional regimen:

  • Walnuts.
  • Lean meats
  • Dark chocolate.
  • Avocado.
  • Whole grains.
  • Fresh fruits.

Make sure you eat a balanced diet and do not indulge in any of the foods mentioned. The secret is in balance and in supplementing your diet with an active lifestyle that includes exercise.

3. Genetics

According to a study published by Nature Communications, the appearance of gray hair when young is related to our DNA. In fact, in the same investigation they determined the first gene related to the existence of whitish hair.

The name of this gene is IRF4 and is involved in the production of melanin. As we already mentioned, it is the substance in charge of the hair pigment.

That is why you may see families whose generations are characterized by gray hair in youth. It does not mean that it is a disease. It's just that they don't have the genetic ability to make enough melanin.

4. Autoimmune diseases

Studies like the ones we have already mentioned have also made the exception that autoimmune diseases are capable of causing gray hair when young. It happens that the immune system attacks healthy cells.

Among the pathologies that are related to the appearance of gray hair are vitiligo, thyroid disorders, Werner's syndrome and pernicious anemia.

How to prevent gray hair when you are young?

Now that you know what are the reasons why you could get gray while young, then it is time for you to know the habits that prevent your hair from turning gray in your early adulthood. Remember that perseverance and commitment are essential to achieve this.

Put the cigarette aside

The MD Anderson Cancer Center of the University of Texas determined, through research, that cigarette smoke affects hair by reducing its blood circulation and change the DNA of the hair follicles.

In fact, part of the consequences of being a constant smoker are dull-looking hair, discoloration, thinning of the hair fibers and premature graying. Did you know?

Tobacco can affect the skin and hair of smokers, causing signs of premature aging.

Improve your diet

Diet is a fundamental factor in preventing gray hair at an early age. Vegetables should be served in multiple servings, as well as fruits.

Lean proteins cannot be absent, since they will provide your body with the vitamins necessary to maintain the health of the hair follicles.

Specifically, vitamin B12 and vitamin C are substances that help your body produce melanin. Iron and folic acid cannot be lacking as mineral supplements, since low levels of them could cause dull hair.

Avoid excesses

We recommend you avoid excesses. Junk food, alcohol, high salt intake, fried foods, and baked goods can be fatal to healthy hair and promote gray hair when young.

So the most important thing is that lead a healthy lifestyle in every way. This in case your gray hair is not genetic.

The gray hair of youth is not always worrisome

You do not have to worry if you are young and you are observing the appearance of gray hair. Infrequently this condition has a serious origin. In general, there are habits like those already mentioned that can help prevent your hair from turning gray.

However, it is important that you know that if your parents report having gray hair at an early age, there is a high probability that it will happen to you too.

You must not forget that, sooner or later, we will all go through the same. That, fortunately, does not change our personal essence.