Gray Hair Can Regain Its Coloradmin
According to a new study in the preprint repository bioRxiv, there is help in sight for those hoping to combat one of the first signs of aging – going gray.
The study authors collected hair from 14 people of various ethnic backgrounds, looking for samples that were colored at the tip but gray at the root. In the meantime, what they actually found was that multiple hairs actually became less gray toward the root, “suggesting that they were somehow regaining their previous color,” IFLScience.com reports.
After performing a proteomic analysis on these same samples, they found gray hairs contained a large number of upregulated mitochondrial proteins that are not only normally involved with energy metabolism but are also known to become upregulated in response to stress and have been associated without age-related features.
To determine whether or not stress levels may have played a role in the re-coloration of graying hairs, the researchers asked the participants to describe their most and least stressful times during the previous 12 months. The study authors were then able to match up specific sections of each hair with particular life events. Results showed that the reversal of graying correlated with periods of low stress, and also found evidence that hair can turn completely gray or undergo the full reversal of the process in as little as 3.7 days.
While the team is not suggesting that an entire head of gray hair can be restored to its original color, “the study authors write that their finding nonetheless provides categorical proof that ‘human aging is not a linear and irreversible biological process and mat, at the lead in part, be halted, or even reversed.’”