EDIT: Please read my Nearly 3 Years Later: 3 Broken Bones & 200+ Pounds - The Long-Term Effects of Juice Fasting update before considering juice fasting. I hope that my experience will provide you with real-world information about long-term juicing.
I am sharing this story, because no one ever warned me about this.
After my first fast, I lost a lot of hair. We're talking plugs of hair. It didn't start until about four to six weeks after my very first juice fast ended, and I was horrified. I would wake up and there would be a thin layer of my hair all over my pillow. When I would shower, I would pull small chunks out all at once. I actually ran my fingers through my hair while sitting in a coworker's office one day, and I pulled out a large chunk. I simply broke down and cried in his office.
My hair was never *great* beforehand; it was a bit dull, flat and rather oily. The whole hair-loss process lasted about one month and my hair was pretty thin by the end of it all...
...and then it grew back. Not just "back". It grew back thicker, shinier, fuller, even a lighter color. After about a year from when my hair started growing back, my hair was thicker than it was before the first fast.
When my hair first started growing back and the new hairs were about 1" long, I had a mini-mohawk down the part of my hair. Once the new little hairs were about 2" long, it looked like I was constantly suffering from static electricity as they stood on end all around my head.
To this day, my hair is still extremely soft, full, wavy and has a lot of body.
I warned my friend who attempted a 40-day juice fast, and her hair did the same thing. Her hair also regrew beautifully!
I was talking to a hair
dresser about my first juice fast, and he immediately asked if my hair
started to fall out. Surprised, I asked him how he knew. He said that
this is pretty typical for anyone who "shocks their system with a
significant diet change." I would love to understand the physiology of
it, and I welcome any information.
I do not fully understand why this happened. I don't know if it is normal. Please talk to a physician if you have any concerns. I do take this seriously. But I also wanted to give other future fasters a heads up so you do not panic the way I did. Also, this only happened after my first fast and never happened again.
EDIT (10 September 2012): About 5 months after I ended the 2012 fast, my hair started to fall out again, but it was not as drastic as this first experience. I also talk about this in my 6-month post-fast update. It has since stopped. I will let you all know if anything else happens if and when it does.
EDIT (26 October 2012): I have received a lot of feedback on this post from readers who are sharing their experiences regarding fasting and hair loss. Please take the time to read others' experience in the comments section below. After all, my experience is not the end-all, be-all of fasting.
Also, my hair continues to do well. It has not fallen out for a while, though I have not seen a "halo" of new growth yet.