Vitamins and Hair Loss

Can Vitamins and Minerals help Regrow Hair?

Hair loss and thinning hair can be the result of many different factors.  The main culprits are genetics, the aging process, and medical conditions.  Although there is not much you can do about your genetics, and no one has figured out a way to stop getting old, you do have some degree of control over your health.

Many medications list hair loss as a side effect: Coumadin (warfarin); Lopid (gemfibrozil); antidepressants; beta-blockers; non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs); and drugs for gout, arthritis, birth control, and high blood pressure. Usually, hair grows back when the medication is stopped.

Nutritional deficiencies can also cause you to lose your hair. Hair, just like the rest of the cells in your body, needs certain nutrients to stay healthy. A diet lacking these nutrients can stunt hair growth or leave hair dull and limp. If the nutritional deficiency is big enough — like for someone with an eating disorder — hair can fall out. As a result, supplements are sometimes necessary to restore proper levels, which, in turn, can sometimes help regrow hair.

The foundation of all new cellular growth in our bodies is found in the nutrients we eat. A well balanced diet will promote stronger and healthier cells throughout your entire body, both inside and out. If you want to improve the condition of your hair, then you need to improve the building blocks it is made of.

How do vitamins and minerals work?

Vitamins and minerals play an essential role in the body’s normal metabolism, growth, and development. They do this by helping the body process nutrients. Nutrients are substances that are involved in the creation of every molecule in the body. The body needs more than 45 nutrients, and the ways that nutrients are used are as varied as the molecules, cells, and tissues they help to create. Carbohydrates, proteins, and fats (called macronutrients) are broken down (metabolized) to give the body energy. Vitamins and minerals (called micronutrients) are not themselves metabolized for energy, but they are crucial in helping the macronutrients convert to energy.

Because a broad array of nutrients, including vitamin C, iron, biotin, folate and zinc, seem to play roles in hair growth, some experts recommend taking a multivitamin/mineral supplement to cover all your nutritional bases.

Some specific vitamins and minerals essential to hair growth:

• Vitamin A – An antioxidant that aids in the making of sebum in the scalp, which lubricates the hair roots. Food sources rich in Vitamin A are red, yellow, and orange vegetables, fish liver oil, meat, milk, cheese, eggs, spinach, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, apricots and peaches.
• Niacin (Vitamin B3) – Aids in promoting scalp circulation. An increase in blood circulation makes more nutrients available to the hair follicles so they can grow stronger, healthier hair. Food sources include wheat germ, fish, chicken, turkey and meat.
• Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5) – Helps in preventing graying and hair loss. Rich food sources – whole grain cereals, organ meats and egg yolks.
• Vitamin B6 – Prevents hair loss. Food sources include brewer’s yeast, liver, whole grain cereals, vegetables, organ meats and egg yolk.
• Vitamin B12 – Prevents hair loss. Rich food sources include chicken, fish, eggs and milk.
• Vitamin C – Helps maintain hair health. Sources of vitamin C are citrus fruits, strawberries, kiwi, cantaloupe, pineapple, tomatoes, and dark green vegetables.
• Vitamin E – Improves blood circulation in the scalp. Food sources rich in vitamin E are vegetable oils, wheat germ oil, soybeans, raw seeds and nuts, dried beans, and leafy green vegetables.
• Biotin – A component of the manufacturing process of hair. It appears to enhance hair growth, thicken fibers and diminish shedding. It also plays a role in the overall health of skin and nails. It is found in foods like egg yolks, liver, rice, and milk.
• Beta-carotene – Essential to hair growth. This is because it is converted to vitamin A as the body needs it, helps maintain normal growth and bone development, protective sheathing around nerve fibers, as well as promoting healthy skin, hair, and nails.
• Inositol – Keeps hair follicles healthy. Rich food sources include whole grains, liver and citrus fruits.
• Iron – A lack of iron can lead to anemia – a reduction of red blood cells – which is a cause of hair loss in women. Adding iron rich foods to your diet like broccoli or brewer’s yeast may help reverse some forms of hair loss. Iron absorption is boosted by vitamin C.
• Zinc – Studies show this nutrient may affect the levels of androgens – the hormones involved in some forms of genetic hair loss

In addition to vitamins and minerals, some herbs have been identified as having a positive effect on slowing down hair loss including:

Green Tea – Studies have shown may influence blood concentrations of hormones linked to at least one form of genetic hair loss known as androgenic alopecia. In one study published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer in 1998, Japanese researchers found that drinking green tea could increase levels of the sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) in women. Since this biochemical binds testosterone, the more SHBG present in a woman’s body, at least theoretically, the less testosterone will be in her bloodstream. And that, say some experts, may block the chain of hormonal activity that initiates some forms of hair loss. Green Tea is also a good source of anti-oxidants.

Additional Information

27 Responses to “Vitamins and Hair Loss”

  • Vitamins and minerals affect every aspect of our physical make up and it’s performance. It just makes sense that a deficiancy in certain ones have varied negative effects on the body and vice versa, though too much of a good thing also takes a toll. Maintaining the right balance in all aspects of life is key to happy and healthy living.

  • Dr. Farley from Yellow Toenails Treatment:

    I like the idea of eating healthier to grow hair, but I believe it would only be effective if the nutrient difficiency was causing the hair loss in the first place. The nice thing is though that the worst thing that can happen if you try this treatment is you’ll be getting a more balanced intake of vitamins =)

  • Peter from Herbal Supplements:

    A deficiency in Vitain D is generally linked with hair loss and some other hair ailments.

  • Here are a couple of ways to get natural hair restoration

    Vitamin B2 is one of the vitamins that is essential to keeping the hair follicles from producing too much sebum.

    Vitamin A is another of the vitamins for hair loss prevention.

    Vitamin E helps to provide circulation to the scalp.

  • All natural medicine or any other type of think which based on natural like Castor oil can be applied externally to the hair, and it can also be taken internally.which give benefits also.

  • I definitely agree, having the right nutrition helps your hair grow faster and stay stronger. It also helps the rest of your body.

  • Mary-Helen from Raw Food Diet Recipes:

    I certainly agree that both vitamins and minerals are essential elements that do contribute to the continued wellbeing of the body. The body does not store either vitamins or minerals for long and so you have to keep topping them up on a daily basis.

    Eating raw food can certainly deliver most of the vitamins and minerals you need but you need to eat a wide range of fruits, nuts, grains and vegetables to achieve the maximum benefit.

    Some people do not like eating raw food and so have to rely on vitamin and mineral supplements. The deficiency of some, or all vitamins and minerals will definitely have a negative effect on the growth of hair, nails and skin and so we should pay more attention to our diet.

  • todd from b complex vitamins:

    A vitamin b deficiency can lead to many problems including depression and hair loss. Also, a lack of vitamin b can also cause nerve damage. A complex b vitamin contains all the essential B vitamins from B1-B12. Everyone needs vitamin b, and a supplement or a multi-vitamin should be taken if you are not getting proper nutrition.

  • Diether from mens-sportcoats:

    I thought vitamins and minerals also use as a supplements in the body but not the hair. So thank you so much for letting me know about hair loss.

  • I have a problem with a few hairs greying, and I’m only 27! Is it stress? I’ll try a B5 vitamin, you like wrote.

  • To improve your hair’s health and the overall physical condition of your body, improve dietary nutrition

  • My partner was actually advised to try drinking green to help with her hair. Although he isn’t thinning, her hair is very dry and breaks easily.

    Would someone be able to tell me if green tea would help with that?


  • Max:

    I know hair loss is hereditary and a real problem for guys like me, but for energy and confidence, I use Liquid Vitamin Supplements such as Max International’s products and Vemma. I found that they actually work and are not just a load of marketed junk like most stuff. These supplements are good for energy, hair, eyes, skin and anything you can imagine. They even have a range of weight loss supplements that helped me lose 10lbs!

  • I agree, the use of herbs is much overlook in today’s medicine. There are so many natural remedies that could be used if the big Pharma’s could standing losing some revenue.

  • Vitamins can help with everything, your skin and your nails and your hair. You can take a multi vitamin daily but it’s always best to get all your vitamins naturally through the food you eat. Get your scalp checked and get a hairstylist who will look after the long term future of your hair and you should be fine.

  • I love finding natural products that can benefit our bodies inside and out! Excellent article that contains a lot of indepth information.

  • Herbalism incorporates a long-term tradition of use beyond standard medical care. It is becoming a lot more mainstream as improvements in analysis and quality control in addition to innovations in scientific research show the value of herbal treatments in the treating and preventing illness.

  • Erorgofef:

    The diet of human beings prior to the arrival of agriculture, technology and civilization is known as the Paleolithic Diet. In short, it is a diet of the Stone Age which consisted of mainly lean red meat and vegetables. 45 to 65% of energy needed by the body is derived in this type of diet my consuming animal meat in large quantites.

    Living off of the Paleolithic Diet till the early centuries, people had extremely low rates of cancer, obesity, arthritis, osteoporosis, diabetes and heart diseases before shifting to our modern diets. Therefore, nutritionists and scientists believe that the Paleolithic diet is a great tool for combating modern ailments including obesity, cancer and others.

    The foods included in this diet are generally lean red meat, eggs, fish, fruits, nuts and vegetables. Items like breads, pasta, milk, refined sugars were excluded from this diet. This diet used to vary region and culture wise in different countries.

    The specialty of this diet is it is rich in protein, fiber, minerals, iron, vitamins, mono unsaturated fat, omega3 fats, antioxidants and phyto-chemicals. On the other hand the diet contains lower quantity of saturated fats, salts, and enzyme inhibitors.

    Experts feel that the Paleolithic diet have many health benefits and since foods taken are mostly natural they have no side effects. Since milk and dairy products are excluded in this diet it is safe to have some calcium to protect from rickets, osteoporosis, etc.

  • Jasmin from Healthy Hair Diet:

    Vemma looks very promising. Thanks for sharing.

    It’s always great to know what we serve in our tables can make our hair grow healthier – all it takes it good judgment.
    .-= Jasmin@Healthy Hair Diet´s last blog ..Hair Food | Healthy Hair Diet =-.

  • Antioxidant are very powerful and can aid weight loss and well being. This is why I eat lots of food that contain antioxidants. I may have to drink my antioxidants now as well. That Verve looks like it will help me with my weight loss and health.

  • The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has recently published the results of a work on the essences of green tea. Matching to the study, taking green tea accumulated the metabolic rate of the subjects, thus resulting in higher energy consumption. These effects, once attributed to caffeine, have now been confirmed to be misrelated. In the study, some subjects consumed a green tea supplement and the rest where allotted the same quantity of caffein in other ways. Pretty cool green tea can help you lose weight and regrow hair!

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  • shane from Turnkey Adult Website:

    I’ve found vitamins and minerals are very helpful in maintaining my hair. Since I started taking them my hair has grown much thicker and faster. I can see how a deficiency may cause you to loose your hair considerably.

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