If you’re losing your hair and want an excuse to eat fast food, look no further. McDonald‘s french fries may help prevent baldness. Well, sort of, maybe, if you’re a lab rat, at least.

Professor Junji Fukuda, a Japanese researcher at Yokohama National University just published a paper in the journal Biomaterials announcing the discovery of a new method to help maintain hair follicle germs. A crucial ingredient to this method, according to the paper, is dimethylpolysiloxane (DMPS). The chemical also happens to be a key ingredient in the oil McDonald’s uses in its french fries and most of its fried food. Who could have seen that one coming?

But what exactly is DMPS? And why isn’t it found in homemade fried cooking? Well, probably because it’s not sold at the grocery store, at least in an edible form. See, here’s where things get kind of gross. It’s actually a type of silicone that’s commonly used as a caulk or adhesive. Also, it’s in Silly Putty! We all know how delicious that toy is. It’s way tastier than Play-Doh, at least.

McDonald’s doesn’t even technically mention the chemical among their list of product ingredients. (And given its frequent use as aquarium sealant, we can’t really blame them.) Instead it’s listed on their website as in the context of this description, which is further proof you should always read the fine print:

“Our fried menu items are cooked in a vegetable oil blend with citric acid added as a processing aid and dimethylpolysiloxane to reduce oil splatter when cooking.”

No word on whether or not McDonald’s will add that it’s also a great aid for promoting hair growth on their site, but they probably can take all the good press they can get. At this rate, Ronald McDonald will never go bald.

Header image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Jessica is a former Associate Editor at Chowhound. Follow her on Twitter @volume_knob for updates on snacks and cats.
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