Most minerals and vitamins for thinning hair, hair loss and alopecia should be available from a normal healthy diet.
This very simple vitamin, mineral and supplement guide explains all…
Finding the right foods to eat is not that difficult – it’s just a question of choosing the healthy options (jam packed full of
nutrients) in preference to the junk that most people usually
throw into their bodies.
Finding the right foods to eat is not that difficult – it’s just a question of choosing the healthy options (jam packed full of nutrients) in preference to the junk that most people usually throw into their bodies.
But, therein lies the problem...
Many people simply don’t seem to have the discipline to avoid the foods that they know all too well are more harmful than healthy.
However, knowledge can be a very powerful tool.
if you suffer hair loss and your current diet is far from ideal, then
perhaps once you learn which vitamins and minerals can help your hair
grow (and which foods contain them) you’ll be able to choose the best
foods for both you and your hair from now on.
It’s important to realize that, even if you do choose a healthy diet, you've got to do it right…
If you overcook your food, you're not going to get as many (or any?) vitamins into your body. That's because, if you cook your food at very high temperatures (i.e., frying, grilling or baking) then you’ll not only end up burning it, but you can also destroy the vitamins it contains too.
And whilst any minerals your food might contain should still be fine at high temperatures, even so, it's far better to cook at lower temperatures (i.e., by gently steaming or boiling) so you get as many nutrients from your food as you possibly can.
The list below gives specific vitamins for hair loss with a few good food sources for each.
Both animal and vegetarian sources have been given wherever possible.
Promotes healthy hair follicle cell growth, and prevents dry, brittle
hair and rough skin. Natural
sources: liver, oily fish, eggs. Vitamin A is also formed from
beta-carotene (e.g., carrots).
There are several B
vitamins for thinning hair, strong hair growth and retaining hair color
that you should know about:
B3 (Niacin) - Can help increase scalp circulation. Natural sources: chicken, turkey, fish, wheat germ.
B5 (Pantothenic acid) - Important for adrenal gland function and conversion of carbohydrates and fats into energy. Pantothenic acid is considered to be one of the best vitamins for thinning hair and hair loss. Natural sources: whole grains, liver, kidney, egg yolk.
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) - B6 is good for maintaining hair color, and a deficiency can cause hair loss. Natural sources: wheat germ, yeast, soy.
Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) - Essential for normal metabolic function of cells and nervous system. Hair loss and pernicious anemia could eventually result from a vitamin B12 deficiency. Natural sources: meat, fish, poultry, eggs.
Folic Acid - Possibly the most important of all the vitamins for thinning hair, hair loss and preventing loss of hair color. It's also very important for women (especially if pregnant). Natural sources: chicken, nuts, soy and fortified breakfast cereals.
Para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA) - Can help return hair to its original color. Natural sources: whole grains, yeast, kidney and (especially) liver.
Inositol - A diet lacking inositol can cause skin irritation/eczema, nerve problems and even baldness. Inositol can help reduce cholesterol levels in the blood. Natural sources: soy lecithin, wheat germ, barley and black-eye peas.
Biotin (vitamin H) - Biotin will help metabolize fatty acids and helps prevent premature graying. Natural sources: egg yolks, liver, milk, yeast and kidney.
Choline - Choline is similar to B
vitamins. It can help
counteract stress (which can contribute to hair loss). Natural sources: soy lecithin, egg yolk, yeast,
liver and wheat germ.
This vital nutrient can assist some other vitamins and minerals (e.g., it helps iron
absorption) and is essential for healthy skin, blood vessels and collagen
formation. It's also a powerful antioxidant (antioxidants fight
cell-damaging free radicals that cause your body to age). Natural
sources: berries, citrus fruits and leafy green vegetables.
Can help prevent gray hair and hair loss. This antioxidant vitamin also
promotes healthy blood flow, which can help maintain strong scalp
circulation. Natural sources: most vegetable oils, hazelnuts, almonds,
Consume too many vitamins for thinning hair and hair loss disorders and you might actually harm your hair.
Here are a few examples to illustrate:
In addition to vitamins for thinning hair and hair loss problems, minerals can help too…
Helps metabolize iron and fat and is involved in pigment formation (so it
may help prevent premature gray hair). Natural sources: liver, yeast,
sunflower seeds and nuts.
Used in thyroid hormones for controlling metabolic rate, growth,
development and protein synthesis. A deficiency might slow down your
metabolism with symptoms that include hair loss. Natural sources: oily
fish, eggs, seaweed.
Forms a component of hemoglobin within the red blood cells that transport
oxygen throughout the body. An iron deficiency can cause anemia and
hair loss. Natural sources: liver, kidneys, fortified breakfast
cereals, black-strap molasses.
Important for the nervous system, it relaxes muscles and may help
reduces stress. Natural sources: halibut, nuts, soy, wheat bran.
Helps the immune system and protein utilization. This antioxidant can
also help counteract dandruff. Natural sources: Brazil nuts, kidney,
Needed for bones, nails, joints, hair and skin. Silica is said to help
hair grow thicker, stronger and create more shine.
Natural sources: leafy green vegetables, beets, parsnips, apples,
grapes, raw almonds, oats.
Sulfur improves the sheen and texture of hair, stimulates blood
circulation, reduces inflammation, is important for collagen production,
etc. Natural sources: garlic, onions and protein rich foods like meat,
fish, poultry, liver, nuts.
Vital for healthy skin and nails, improvement of the immune system,
cell division, hormone balance, absorption of vitamins, protein
synthesis, etc. Natural sources: wheat
germ, pumpkin seeds, brewer's yeast, oysters, mussels, shrimps, egg
Most people in most countries won’t be deficient in most of the vitamins and minerals the human body needs. But, knowing what the optimum doses are for a healthy body and healthy hair, is not clear.
To play it safe, you would simply try to obtain all these nutrients from the foods you eat.
But, all the minerals and vitamins for thinning hair and hair loss conditions that you should be getting from the foods you eat might not be enough. So, depending on which disorder you have, you might benefit from taking hair loss supplements too...
Omega 3 fish oils, MSM (for sulfur), soy lecithin (for fat digestion and to provide inositol and choline), multi-vitamin and mineral formulas, curcumin (to lower blood sugar levels), etc.
There are a staggering number of supplements for you to consider!
And there are also several herbs and essential oils which won't exactly "cure" thinning hair or baldness, but might help to some extent.
Learn more? Herbal Hair Loss Remedies.
I believe that, no matter how many vitamins, minerals and other supplements you take for your hair, there's no way they can regrow your hair on their own.
I do think certain vitamins for promoting hair growth can help, but a hands-on approach to hair loss can far exceed any nutritional supplement you might take.
Following many years of suffering hair loss (androgenetic alopecia) I developed my own natural remedy which has produced amazing results for both myself and many other men and women too.
These techniques are based on my research into skull expansion - the true underlying cause of this type of hair loss.
To find out how I recovered my hair growth again using these techniques, read this page.
Note: No RNI (Recommended Nutrient Intakes) have been given on this page. Nutrient requirements and deficiencies can vary from person to person, and can be dependent upon digestive system efficiency, nutrient utilization, age, lifestyle, etc. Always consult with a qualified health care specialist before making any lifestyle, dietary or other health related changes.