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What research shows a relationship between gray hair and caffeine?


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Answered 2009-05-19 17:44:58

Grey hair is a hereditary trait and has nothing to do with diet. If caffeine intake was a factor then Jehovah's Witnesses wouldn't have grey hair since it is against their beliefs to consume caffeine. May 19, 2009- I believe that there is indeed a very strong connection between gray hair and coffee. The response above was written flippantly and without thought. If you are a coffee drinker of at least two cups per day or more (or pounding down RedBulls or other caffeinated drinks) the chances of your hair becoming prematurely gray (in your 20's and 30's) is very high. Genetics do indeed play a role as does stress and diet. Yet moderate to high coffee consumption speeds up the process. I have challenged online coffee 'pundits' through editorial responses in questioning the safety of coffee. There is not one research study provided so far that I have found that would show the variants involved with coffee drinking and whitening of one's hair. However, I have seen through personal observations what intense caffeine intake can do to one's hair. I worked as a paralegal for four years in law offices in Los Angeles in the 1990's. Without fail, the attorneys who were pounding down whole pots of coffee per day were the ones with the whitest hair. This was true for those in their thirties through fifties. Stress would decidedly play a key, however, the added caffeine "rush" is also largely responsible. When I lived in Sonoma County north of San Francisco, I had a 38 year old friend who cut and trimmed trees for a living amongst the redwoods. He had hurt is back and in order to make it easier to get started in the mornings (at 5am) he started brewing coffee in his home and filled his thermos with it. He drank roughly 3-4 cups in the morning to start his day. His hair literally went from jet black to "salt and pepper' within one year. He was a bit surprised by it as well when I mentioned what I thought was the reason to him at a social function after not seeing him for months. When will more research be done on this? It will never happen if the coffee industry has its say.

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