6/23/17 Hair

6 MONTH RECAP

Hey Guys! We are now at the SIX MONTH mark! AAAAAAHHHHHHHH! First of all I just want to say thank you to all of you guys for taking (what I call) my “hair growth journey” with me! These blog posts have not only helped me find new ways that I can take care of my hair and share them with you but they have also kept me ACCOUNTABLE to stay with it. I am the type of person who has a hard time with changing things but my hair has never been in that category. These posts have helped me stop coloring my lovely hair (which I went crazy doing for two years) or getting fed up and chopping it off!

We are now in the beginning of summer and I worry about staying on track. As I mentioned in my last hair update, the thickness of my hair has returned. If you guys remember I had to trim it in the beginning of March because my ends were discussing. Within just two months, the thickness came back. I have still stayed away from heat products (with the exception of a special occasion, which have only been about once a month) and I have refrained from tying my hair up.

I know with summer here and the heat increasing you all are thinking, “WHAT?! How can you NOT put your hair up?” Believe me, it’s been hard. But I learned that where you tie your hair up is where breakage is 99% likely to happen. So instead of putting my hair in a bun or ponytail (and having to deal with the breakage in a matter of months) I’ve started putting my hair in a braid/plait. This way the rubber bands create less breakage because then I only have to cut off the ends when that breakage happens.

BIG regrets with my hair

Summer is here and it is hot. The last time my hair was really long was in 2012 (almost 5 YEARS  AGO!) It was down to my waist and (in all honesty) not well taken care of. But I loved having it! There were so many hairstyles I tried and new ones I discovered. Then, towards the end of summer, I went to Chicago for 3 days and the heat was intense. Having my thick hair on my neck was not helping me either. I came home and two days after school started up again, I chopped it into a PIXIE! I have always thought that pixies are adorable and edgy but definitely something I wanted to try. For me though, it was a BAD idea! My hair is too thick to carry a pixie and my jaw is slightly too round. It was not the right haircut for me and I regretted it about a week after I got it.

Ever since that decision in 2012 I have been attempting to grow it back out. But with all the different hair colors and treatments I did in the past 5 years its been hard to get it back to the length I wish to have. Which is why I decided to start this journey and see how long I can go for. My goal is to continue it for a whole year. The new year will be my first end mark. But because hair can sometimes take between a year and a half to two years to grow out to a desired length, I will decide at the new year if I want to continue the journey and documenting it for another six months to a year. Thanks for coming along with me!

:-* MMB

 

 

Hormones for Dummies, kind of

Movie Mondays at the Martini Mansion

(aka short documentary at my crappy apartment)

Having put on my student of science cap last night, I watched an hour-long documentary on hormones by the name of The Fantastical World of Hormones, with Dr. John Wass (see Mr. Wass below).

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I feel like it is widely accepted that hormones control just about everything in our lives.  From the exciting (libido, emotions, passions) to the boring (puberty, hairline, voice).  I watched this short film with a learning mindset, and here is what I found out:

1.     The study of hormones is called, “Endocrinology.” It’s a unique and sexy area of scientific inquiry with many discoveries remaining to be made.  How scientists study the tiny mysteries involve  bizarre albeit intelligent experiments, as the endocrine system is not an anatomical system like the cardiovascular or nervous system (meaning that it cannot be seen).   One crazy experiment involved removing the sexual organs – testicles for males and ovaries and part of the wombs for females – of different animals and inserting them under the animals’ skin in a different area of the body.  No matter where the sexual organs were placed in the animals’ bodies, they continued to deliver hormones throughout the body.  This particular discovery revolutionized women’s health and endocrinology, because hormones were finally understood as chemicals independent from the nervous system (ovaries didn’t need to send estrogen through the nervous system to different parts of the body).

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2.     Hormones are chemical secretions that travel by blood.  In men, for example, the testicles release testosterone into the blood, and the bloodstream carries the chemicals to different parts of the parties, spurring physiological changes (i.e. puberty).

3.     If a man is castracastratoted before puberty (such man-boys are called “castratos”), then his voice will remain at that angelic choir-boy pitch despite their physical growth– this was somehow a common procedure for male opera singers that continued until the early twentieth century.

4.     Doctors used to believe that ovaries were the cause of various physical and mental disabilities, and would, in hopes of curing the ailments, remove the ovaries of the afflicted women (Is anyone else greatly disturbed by this?)  If both ovaries are removed, women experience early menopause systems such as hot flashes, irregular periods, insomnia, and bladder irritability.

5.     Cortisol is the stress hormone, while addrenaline is the fight or flight hormone, and oxycotin is the bonding hormone.  Each hormone is aimed at a particular cell, and only works on that target cells.

6.     The pituitary gland regulates the distribution of hormones. . . Generally.  Apparently there are other parts of our bodies functioning as hormone regulators as well, such as our fat.  Fat creates the hormone leptin, which in turn, affects the amount of food we eat. It works like this: Leptin is constantly being produced by our fat cells, and the more fat stores we have, in general, the more leptin flows in the blood.  This hormone essentially tells our brain that we’ve eaten enough, and we lose our appetite.  BUT, the system doesn’t always work properly.  Sometimes, fat cells don’t produce leptin, and those afflicted won’t be able to control their appetites.  Often times, these people over eat and become obese.  As the inability to produce leptin is genetic, let’s take the time to blame the original villains in our lives: our parents  ;).  I’ll say this, though: it’s not always a lack of self-control, #mondaymotivation; sometimes, it’s a hormone deficiency.

fatmouse

Looking Forward

Endocrinology, as a science, is a relatively young field of inquiry, being just over 100 years old.  There has been a lot of progress with the abandonment of male youth castration and oophorectomies (procedure removing the ovaries), but as doctors discover more about the ways hormones affect our minds and bodies, I’m sure we’ll see new and potentially horrifying methods and procedures to retain and/or regain youth and beauty.

Would I recommend watching the movie?

If you like documentaries and are interested in human chemistry with a pinch of history, it’s definitely worth the watch!  That said, I might have spoiled a lot of those fun, “What?! I didn’t know that!” moments.  While I watched it on Amazon Prime, it is also available to watch on Youtube.

 

❤ EM

 

Operation: Don’t Eat Foods that Make me Poop Myself

Hot off the heels of my “#change” post, I have landed on my first course of action!

I will be starting an Elimination Diet.

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I know, I know, it sounds like another crackpot/roundabout/pseudo-committed attempt at weight loss, but I assure you, that is only…. 11% of why I am doing this.  I will be sharing my experience along the way, but here is a list of my reasons behind this decision.

  1. Bad Skin

I am 25, and I have struggled with acne since I was a teen.  Granted, some of the struggle is hormonal, but I would like to find out, once and for all, just how much my diet affects my breakouts.

  1. Unpredictable (and sometimes irritable) Bowels

You would think that by now I would have figured out exactly what foods upset my stomach, but nope.  I’ve never paid much attention to how the food I eat affects my bowel movements, but it’s undeniable that it does.  I would like to know what foods to avoid, so that as I get older, the chance of shitting myself does not increase.  I don’t think that’s too much to hope for.

  1. Mood Swings

I suffer from…. not depression or bipolar disorder (or maybe I do, and I’m undiagnosed), but I definitely experience substantial mood swings.  And I know it’s related to my diet.  Even though I don’t understand the science, I accept it as a fact that certain foods have specific chemical properties and provide different vitamins that affect my mood in a physiological way.  To put is crassly, some foods fuck with my head at a basic biological way.  Some foods also mess with my head in an emotional way, too.  It’s certainly something I have to let go, but I feel guilty for eating various foods and proud for eating others, which definitely contributes to my mood swings.  I hope that this elimination diet will allow me to appreciate the physical effect food as energy has on my body, as opposed to the emotional effect food as a drug has on my mind.

  1. Restaurants are Expensive! And I’d like to become a better cook.

I eat out WAY too much.  Not only does it strain my bank account, but it’s disheartening that the best dish I can make from scratch – without a recipe – is scrambled eggs on toast.  I would like to feel comfortable– dare I say confident in the kitchen.  Am I the only person who romanticizes having the ability to cook my friends and family a beautiful meal?

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If you identify with any, some, or all of these, I encourage you to join me in this Elimination Diet challenge!  I start tomorrow: Monday, September 26, 2016!

❤ EM