What Brows Say About Your Health
Eyebrows are big business. Fluffy, HD or microbladed, eyebrow grooming is booming thanks to icons such as British model cum actress Cara Delevingne (above).
New advances include eyebrow transplants and microblading, a kind of tattooing where tiny strokes of ink are added to resemble hairs, a treatment that lasts up to three years.
Brows have always had trends, of course – from Cleopatra’s carbon-lined brows onwards. There are the pencil-like styles of Marlene Dietrich in the 30s, Audrey Hepburn’s thick eyebrows to emphasise her doe eyes in the 50s, glossy brows on Marie Helvin in the 70s and bushy brows on Brooke Shields in the 80s. In the 90s, it was all about the pencil-thin look, and celebrities such as Pamela Anderson or Drew Barrymore.
The Noughties went further. The likes of Sophie Ellis-Bextor or model Lara Stone had squeaky-clean skin with brows as an afterthought.
But brows became a focus again; achieving the ideal shape for an individual’s face so as to create the most flattering “frame” to offset their features.
Many women struggle, however, with eyebrows that are barely there. Either nature didn’t bestow them in the first place, over-plucking has permanently thinned them or age has wearied them.
But there could be other underlying health reasons for thin, patchy or otherwise troublesome brows that too few people are aware of.
Fiona Tuck has more than 25 years of experience in the health and wellness industry. She is a qualified nutritional medicine practitioner, skincare expert, yoga teacher and accredited member of the Australian Traditional-Medicine Society.
In her new book, The Forensic Nutritionist, Fiona explains the …
• Associated Organs: Adrenals, Thyroid
• Stored Emotion: Fear and Stress
The adrenal glands are two small endocrine glands that sit on top of the kidneys. They produce a number of important hormones including cortisol and adrenaline, the hormones involved in managing our response to stress. The adrenals also produce small amounts of male and female sex hormones such as testosterone and oestrogen.
When our body is under constant stress it has a knock on affect to our adrenal glands and our hormone production.
The adrenals are also involved in blood pressure regulation as they also produce the hormone aldosterone. Aldosterone maintains the correct balance of salt and water within the body which also assists the control of our blood pressure.
With these little glands being crucial to so many important functions within the body you can see why being under constant stress can cause such internal disharmony such as hormone imbalance, blood pressure issues, cardiovascular problems and fertility issues.
A quick way to check how stress may be affecting you is to take a look at your eyebrows. If it seems unusually wiry or long, it could be an indication that you are burning the candle at both ends and your adrenal glands are under too much stress.
Fine eyebrow hair or tapering brows can be a sign of adrenal exhaustion (you are near burn out and your adrenal glands are struggling to work efficiently) or thyroid issues, such as an underactive thyroid.
The thyroid is a large gland found in the neck that controls our metabolism and pretty much every cell within the body. It regulates your metabolism or the way our cells are fuelled via the production of thyroid hormones.
You may often hear people say they have a slow metabolism or blame weight gain on an underactive thyroid, which means the body is slow to utilise food for cell fuel or energy meaning that excess fuel or energy is stored as fat within the body.
The body requires a dietary intake of iodine and selenium for healthy thyroid hormone production.
Often when one organ is out of balance (such as the adrenal glands) this can have a knock-on effect to the thyroid and sometimes even the reproductive system.
The three systems work synergistically together; if left untreated it will have a knock-on effect to the entire health of the body.
FOODS TO NOURISH
• Vitamin C-rich foods such as citrus, strawberries, capsicums
• Magnesium rich foods such as green leafy vegetables, nuts and seeds
• Mineral-rich seaweed, kelp, brazil nuts (selenium), sea salt
FOODS TO MINIMISE
• Processed foods
• Soft drinks
• Raw cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts and kale
• Protein powders and supplements
MORE ABOUT FIONA
Fiona Tuck is devoted to exposing food and diet misconceptions, actively seeking to help people recognise their own nutritional deficiencies and educating them on how to correct these for better health.
Her expertise and insight make her a sought-after media wellness expert. She regularly provides commentary for TV and radio and writes articles for national online and print publications.
The Forensic Nutritionist is available at leading bookstores, health food stores, and FIONATUCK.COM, RRP $39.95.