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Gray hair is something that happens naturally in all of us at a certain point in our life. When that happens, it is unavoidable, but stress-induced graying of hair can be reversed.

According to hair expert Ghanima Abdullah, “Melanin is responsible for giving our hair its color via the pigmentation cells called melanocytes. According to scientists, our bodies have some sort of ‘melanocyte clock’ that regulates when our hair turns white. Our clocks tick at different rates depending on whether they’re influenced by genetic factors or external influences. ” Additionally, she goes on to explain that there are steps that can be taken to help prevent premature graying.

In a recent study, scientists confirmed that the premature graying of hair is stress-induced. Due to that, stress-induced graying is much easier to reverse. The study was published in eLife, and after plucking and analyzing hair follicles from various individuals, they found that hair could be ‘repigmented’ in the vast majority of those who participated.

With that being said, if you are looking to reduce the gray in your hair, here are some tips.

1. Make sure you are getting all of your nutrition needs.

Vitamin deficiencies are a major cause of premature graying, Abdullah explains. To thwart this, it’s important to eat a mineral and nutrient-rich diet, or at the very least supplement. Vitamin D is especially important for graying hair.

2. Use hair products that are filled with anti-oxidants.

Sometimes, premature graying can be caused by free radical damage, which takes place when we don’t have enough antioxidants in our body to stop it. To help with this, you can make sure to eat a diet with plenty of antioxidants, and also you can use shampoo with them added.

3. Reduce stress.

Stress is a major contributor to premature aging. If you want to try to help encourage the repigmentation of your hair, it’s important to remove the excess stress from your life that is causing it.

4. Protect your hair from the sun.

Sun damage is another major contributor to premature graying, as the sun causes the hair to lose pigment. When you are out in the sun, wear a hat, or sun covering to protect it from the sun.

5. Use coconut oil.

Dry and damaged hair tends to go gray faster because it loses pigment faster. Since the shaft of the hair is highly porous, using an antioxidant-filled oil like coconut oil is extremely beneficial.

6. Eat foods rich in catalase.

Catalase is an antioxidant enzyme that has been proven to prevent and even reverse premature graying. To help, try to eat foods rich in this enzyme. Some foods that are catalase rich are broccoli, onions, radish, cucumber, zucchini, red cabbage, apples, grapes, peaches, lentils, and sprouts.

7. Use a sage wash.

Sage leaves are used often in ayurvedic medicine as a remedy for gray hair. The reason it works is that it helps to restore the hair’s natural color and prevents more grays from growing.

8. Use ribbed gourd.

Ribbed or ridge gourd contains enzymes that restore pigments naturally in the hair. All you have to do is steep the gourd pieces in coconut oil for 5 days. Boil the mix for a few minutes, strain it, and then store it. Use it at night to massage into the scalp.

9. Use a potato peel to rinse.

Using a potato peel rinse is effective and easy. Just peel 6 potatoes and boil the peels. Let it cool, and wash and condition your hair. Then, rinse your hair with the potato peel liquid. The starch from the potatoes helps to add pigment, which makes it much easier to mask gray hairs and pigment it.