Is a Vitamin Deficiency Responsible for Your Lackluster Hair?
Most people are familiar with Biotin for improved hair growth, but many vitamins and minerals are important to promote hair growth. When you read the label on hair supplements, what vitamins are necessary to keep hair healthy? We review a few vitamins and minerals often seen in hair supplement formulas.
Several of these first vitamins and minerals are often part of a multi-vitamin or prenatal vitamin. Deficiencies in these are often seen on standard bloodwork panels. If you are experiencing hair loss, your doctor may find an iron or zinc deficiency may be the culprit.
Basic Vitamins for Hair Health
- Biotin is found in many hair growth supplements because it builds keratin, the foundation of hair growth.
- Zinc deficiencies are common and can lead to hair loss
- Selenium helps support hair related issues including thyroid and blood flow
- The B Vitamins work in together to support B processes that impact hair growth including signaling the body to grow hair and Keratin production. They help the body process iron which is vital for hair health.
- Vitamin A keeps the scalp moist by producing healthy sebum, which keeps hair from drying out and breaking off. It also facilitates the hair growth phase. Too little or too much vitamin A can cause hair loss. Proper dosage is necessary.
- Iron is for the growth and repair of cells that stimulate hair growth. A lack of iron can lead to hair loss, dullness and breakage. Many women are iron deficient.
- Iodine deficiency prevents hair follicles from regenerating. Iodine also fights infections that can occur around hair follicles, damaging hair growth. Finally, Iodine helps regulate the thyroid. When the thyroid lacks iodine, hair becomes dry and rough, prematurely gray, losses volume and can even fall out, leading to bald spots.
- Copper increases the size of shrunken hair follicles, stops thinning and premature graying.
Other Vitamins, Minerals and Herbs for Hair Growth
These vitamins and mineral are more unusual and likely not included in a typical multi-vitamin. They each target various hair growth concerns.
- Saw Palmetto is a very important ingredient that is missing from many hair growth supplements. It stops hair loss caused by DHT, a hormone that causes hair follicles to shrink, eventually choking out new hair growth until the follicle doesn’t grow hair at all.
- Ginkgo Biloba increases blood flow to the scalp and can accelerate hair growth rates. Better blood flow means more nutrients get to the hair production process.
- Fo Ti is a Chinese herb known as an anti-oxidant that stops hair loss.
- Tocopheryl Acetate is the most potent form of Vitamin E.
- Borage Oil is for scalp health, it reduces inflammation. It is a “good” fat that contributes towards lush hair.
- Silica builds connective tissue and collagen that helps makes hair. We typically don’t get enough Silica in our diet to contribute to hair growth.
- MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane) makes and binds both keratin and collagen and keeps hair from becoming brittle and thin. An MSM deficiency shortens the hair growth phase. MSM is commonly used for alopecia.
- L-Cysteine is necessary to build Keratin, and hair is 14% cysteine.
- L-Methionine is for hair structure and strength. Strong hair prevents breakage and thinning mid-length.
Vitamins can improve hair strength, shine, and moisture. Vitamins can support hair growth. Most of us don’t get enough of these vitamins and minerals to support lush hair growth, and a reputable hair vitamin is an easy solution. Talk to your doctor about proper dosages to address deficiencies.