Asha Mandela loves her long hair – so much that she will risk paralysis to keep it. Measuring at 55 feet long and weighing in at 42 pounds, Asha’s dreds are longer than a city bus, and the weight of her locks has impacted the anatomy of her spine and neck, something doctors warn could cause paralysis.

Despite doctors’ warnings, she won’t get a haircut. Asha claims keeping her hair long has gotten her through cancer, two strokes and two heart attacks. She says, “It is my life. I will never cut it.” Asha holds the Guinness World Record for longest dreadlocks and has been growing them for the last 25 years. She wears her dreds in a sling to keep them from dragging on the ground.

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