The 7 Best Vitamins For Hair Loss
Premature hair loss can be frustrating to deal with, but luckily, there are ways to treat it â like adding one of the best vitamins for hair loss to your daily routine. While you should always aim to consume a variety of nutrient-dense foods as your main source of vitamins, supplements can be a great addition if you’re not getting enough of certain nutrients.
Since there are many different vitamins for hair available, I tapped Dr. Debra Jaliman, an NYC-based dermatologist, to learn which options are most effective. She recommends looking for amino-acid- and protein-rich supplements, specifically an ingredient called L-Cysteine, as they help the body produce keratin, a vital component of hair structure. As well, biotin and antioxidants such as vitamins C and E are also vital. “Free radicals can damage the scalp and the hair follicles, and these antioxidants help cells fight off free radicals,” she says, adding that vitamin B12 and iron also play an important role in hair growth.
To help you navigate the often-confusing world of dietary supplements, I’ve compiled a research-backed list of the best vitamins to take for skin and hair based on Dr. Jaliman’s recommendations. I’ve included a variety of options at different price points for you to choose from. Shop the best vitamins for hair loss, below.
Female Pattern Hair Loss And Te
Data on vitamin D in female pattern hair loss and TE contradict data derived from studies indicating that women with FPHL or TE have lower levels of vitamin D than controls, and studies showing no correlation or even opposite results . To elucidate the role of vitamin D in FPHL and TE, additional large-scale trials are necessary .
What Causes Male Pattern Hair Loss
Male pattern baldness is caused by DHT , a male sex hormone that activates at puberty. In men with a genetically determined susceptibility to DHT, the hormone attacks hair follicles on the head, causing them to miniaturize , producing progressively thinner hair, and potentially none at all. DHT is the culprit for almost all of adult male hair loss. In very rare cases, other causes come into play, including stress, trauma, or a nutritional deficiency.
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Common Reasons For Hair Loss
Not every person who is experiencing hair loss or thinning hair does so in the same exact way. There are many different reasons for hair loss, and discovering the root cause of your thinning hair can help you determine what approachâwhether itâs making a change in diet, working to reduce the amount of stress from your life, or taking hair loss vitamins â is most likely to be successful at reversing the effects of hair loss. Here are some common reasons for hair loss…
The 5 Best Vitamins For Hair Growth
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Many people view healthy-looking hair as a sign of health or beauty. Like any other part of your body, hair needs a variety of nutrients to be healthy and grow . In fact, many nutritional deficiencies are linked to hair loss.
While factors such as age, genetics and hormones also affect hair growth, optimal nutrient intake is key. Below are 5 vitamins and 3 other nutrients that may be important for hair growth.
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Get A Free Hair Loss Evaluation
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Other Benefits Of Biotin
Although more research is needed to assess its effects on hair growth, biotin does have several proven benefits.
For example, biotin is one of several B vitamins that support a healthy metabolism. Biotin converts glucose from carbohydrates into energy for the body and aids amino acids in carrying out normal bodily functions.
Biotin is also thought to:
- reduce inflammation
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Does Biotin Help Hair Growth
Sorry , but theres no definitive answer on whether biotin really helps grow hair. According to dermatologist Vivian Bucay, MD, clinical assistant professor at the University of Texas Health Science Center, if youre taking a stand-alone biotin supplement, youd need to take at least 5 milligrams daily for it to have the chance of affecting hair growthbut even then, theres no guarantee itll do anything.
Its also worth noting that biotinjust like any supplementisnt without its downsides: Excess biotin has the potential to trigger breakouts in some acne-prone individuals . More research is needed to understand the exact correlation, but what is known is that taking biotin can also affect major medical tests your doctor may perform. Basically, unless you yourself are a doctor , make sure to discuss all supplement-related info with an actual MD.
Best Biotin For Hair Growth
If youve spoken with a healthcare provider and decided to take a biotin supplement as part of your hair care regimen, you may be aware that the market is flooded with biotin supplements that all make the same claims. How can you tell which ones are the best? The answer depends on what youre looking for specifically and what you consider important.
Based on reviews, if you just want biotin without any other vitamins or nutrients,Meribin High Potency Biotin, a 5,000 mcg capsule, is a trusted name. Customers say another good, inexpensive choice is Natures Bounty Biotin Softgels, which come in 5,000 mcg and 10,000 mcg sizes. If youre looking for a little less biotin, some recommend trying Solgar Biotin, a 3,000 mcg tablet that is vegan, non-GMO, and gluten free. If you want something you can chew on, people like Vitafusion Biotin gummies, which are 5,000 mcg and naturally blueberry flavored with no high-fructose corn syrup.
Other popular choices for hair growth include:
- Zhou Hairfluence, which has 5,000 mcg of biotin, collagen, hydrolyzed keratin, and other essential vitamins
- Code Age hair vitamins, which contain 10,000 mcg of biotin and other hair-healthy ingredients
- MegaFood Skin, Nails & Hair, which has 300 mcg of biotin and a special support blend made from organic plants.
- Nutrafol, which has 3,000 mcg of biotin, selenium, iodine, and vitamin C, A, and D
- Viviscal, which has 120 mcg of biotin and a proprietary marine complex of amino acids
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Setting Expectations For Your Extreme Makeover: Mane Edition
Dr. Khetarpalsays that success depends more on the duration of hair loss than anything else.People who have been losing hair for only two or three years are more likely tosee noticeable results than those losing it for 10 or 20 years, she explains.
You may be able to restore your hair to what it was likefive years ago, but not much beyond that. Those are the hair follicles that canbe woken up with nutritional supplementation and medical treatments, she says.Hair that has become too thin and fine can no longer penetrate and exit thesurface of the scalp. You have to be reasonable with your expectations.
And, always talk to your doctor if you start shedding morehair than is normal for you.
What Vitamins Can I Take To Stop My Hair From Falling Out
- Multivitamin. Scientists have determined that vitamins A, B, C, D, iron, selenium, and zinc are all important to the hair growth and retention processes, specifically with cell turnover.
- Vitamin D. One 2018 study noted that vitamin D is associated with nonscarring alopecia.
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Medically Endorsed Hair Loss Treatments
In the UK, only two hair loss medicines are actually endorsed by the medical community, and have been proven to treat hair growth.
The most effective treatment for male pattern baldness is Finasteride . This prescription treatment is not available on the NHS, but you can order it through affordable services like our own LloydsPharmacy Online Doctor. Finasteride has been proven to stop hair loss in 90% of men with male pattern baldness.
Minoxidil is a lotion or foam that is applied to the scalp every day as an effective hair loss treatment. It is not as effective as Propecia, but has still been proven to stop hair loss and promote hair regrowth in 60% of men with male pattern baldness. Minoxidil is available without a prescription, through high street pharmacies or supermarkets. You can also order it online from our website.
How Much Biotin Can You Take For Hair Loss
Biotin is present in many foods, including eggs, fish, meat, seeds, nuts, sweet potatoes, broccoli and cauliflower.
For supplementation, Cleveland Clinic dermatologists favor amega-B vitamin combination that includes:
- 3 milligrams of biotin.
- 200 milligrams of vitamin C.
- < 1 milligram of folic acid.
Occasionally, the mega B-vitamin combination gives somepatients minor gastric trouble, but switching them to biotin alone relievesit, Dr. Bergfeld notes.
And if you cant find the mega B-vitamin combination, youcan buy biotin, zinc and vitamin C separately, she says.
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Do Hair Supplements Really Work
We hate to bust this myth, but doctors say that hair supplements don’t typically work for most people. “I don’t really believe in any of the hair supplements that are out there,” says Mizuguchi.”I do think that there is growing evidence that iron supplementation in some women with proven low ferritin levels should take supplementation as it is a vital cofactor for hair growth.” However, Mizuguchi advises you to consult with a doctor before taking iron, since too much could lead to serious liver damage.
And while you’ve probably heard of biotin, a common ingredient in many hair supplement products, it’s important to know that it primarily addresses hair strength. “Biotin is another supplement that’s often prescribed, especially for women of color, because it’s supposed to be good for hair breakage,” says Mizuguchi. “A lot of people mistake it as something that is good for hair thinning, but biotin deficiency causes hair breakage and not hair loss.”
“Honestly, there is very little well-researched data on supporting that biotin improves hair growth in those who are not deficient,” adds Herrmann.
Side Effects And Interactions
Saw palmetto generally is considered to be safe, but its not recommended for children, or pregnant and breastfeeding women. Rare side effects include mild headaches and stomach pains. Stomach irritation can be avoided by taking the extract with food.
Saw palmetto may thin your blood and can cause excessive bleeding during surgery. Always tell your doctor all of the supplements youre taking before beginning any new type of treatment and before surgery.
Interactions may occur between saw palmetto and some other medications. Because its been shown to thin blood, saw palmetto should never be taken simultaneously with other blood thinners. In particular, it shouldnt be taken with aspirin and prescriptions such as warfarin.
Saw palmetto works in a similar manner as the medication finasteride, which is used to treat hair loss and an enlarged prostate. You should not take them together, unless directed by your doctor. Saw palmetto may reduce the effectiveness of oral contraceptives because it interacts with hormones.
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When To See A Doctor For Hair Loss
If you notice sudden hair loss, make an appointment to see a doctor right away. Sudden hair loss can be a sign of an underlying medical condition like thyroid disease, ringworm, menopause, or pregnancy. Hair loss can also be a sign of a reaction to a medication used to treat cancer, high blood pressure, arthritis, depression, or heart problems.
If you are losing your hair gradually or noticing more scalp than you used to, and you have any concerns about it, contact a dermatologist sooner rather than later. Hair loss can be permanent, so the earlier you start treating it, the more likely you are to have better results.
A board-certified dermatologist is the expert at diagnosing and treating hair loss, says Dr. Hooper. Hair loss is complex and often has a combination of causes. Your dermatologist will talk to you about how much hair you have lost, examine your scalp, skin, and nails, and possibly do blood work or a biopsy to help diagnose your issue and create a treatment plan.
How Long Until You See Results
Most people wont see any noticeable benefits until theyve increased their intake for several months. For best results, you should be consistent in your intake.
If youre increasing your intake through food, youll need to eat several biotin-rich foods on a daily basis to actually ingest enough biotin to make a difference.
If youre taking a supplement, its important that you take it daily or as your doctor instructs you to.
Although research is limited, studies from 2012 and 2015 suggest that results may be seen in as little as 90 days.
This includes an increase in growth and shine. Its thought that the longer you consume a higher dose, the better your results will be.
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Do Hair Growth Vitamins Really Work
Because there isnt really an FDA-approved standard of ingredients, strengths, or formulations across hair vitamin brands, theres never going to be an officialyes or no answer as to whether hair supplements work . But if you ask the expertsor me, who tried taking them for two months and was only left with breakoutsthe answer to whether or not hair vitamins really work is pretty much a big ol NOPE across the board.
Plus, even though vitamins themselves are absolutely necessary and beneficial for your hair, they wont do much if your body is already stocked with themwhich it probably already is. Most people get all the vitamins they need to manage their hair growth just from their diet alone, says trichologist Dominic Burg, chief scientist at Evolis Professional.