Hair loss is no joking matter. For many of us, our hair symbolizes our youth and vitality. When we start to lose our hair, it can significantly blow our self-esteem. And while there are a variety of treatments available, vitamins may provide the best chance for regrowth. Here are seven vitamin deficiencies that can cause hair loss:
1. Vitamin A: Vitamin A is essential for healthy skin and hair. Vitamin A helps to produce sebum, a natural oil that keeps hair healthy and hydrated. A lack of vitamin A can lead to dry, brittle hair that is more prone to breakage. Foods like sweet potatoes, carrots, leafy greens, and tomatoes are all excellent sources of vitamin A.
2. B vitamins: Bare essential for cell growth and health, which are necessary for maintaining a healthy head of hair. Vitamin B12 mainly helps to produce red blood cells, which carry oxygen and nutrients to the cells in the body. Without enough B12, the cells in the scalp cannot function properly, leading to hair loss. Good sources of B vitamins include poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products.
Vitamin C: Vitamin C is necessary for producing collagen, a protein that gives structure to skin and hair. A lack of vitamin C can make dry, fragile hair more prone to breaking. Citrus fruits, strawberries, bell peppers, and Brussels sprouts are all excellent sources of vitamin C. You can also get your fill by drinking orange juice or taking a supplement.
Vitamin D: Vitamin D helps to regulate cell growth, which is important for maintaining healthy hair follicles. A deficiency in vitamin D can lead to hair loss. The best way to get vitamin D is by spending time in the sun. However, if you don't get enough sun exposure or have dark skin (which makes it harder to absorb vitamin D), consider taking a supplement.
Vitamin E: Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps to protect cells from damage. It also helps to keep scalp tissue healthy and hydrated - two things that are essential for preventing hair loss. You can get vitamin E from foods like nuts and seeds or by taking a supplement.
Zinc: Zinc is involved in many cellular processes - including cell growth and division - both essential for maintaining a healthy head of hair. Good sources of zinc include oysters (yes, really), beef chuck roast, pumpkin seeds, and Cocoa Krispies cereal (if you're feeling indulgent). If you suspect you're not getting enough zinc from your diet, your doctor may recommend taking supplements."
Iron: Iron is necessary for carrying oxygen-rich blood to cells throughout the body - including those in the scalp. A lack of iron can lead to anemia, a common cause of hair loss. Good sources of iron include red meat, poultry, fish, beans, and spinach. If you're deficient in iron, you may need to take supplements or receive injections from your doctor.
If you're experiencing hair loss, take a closer look at your diet. You might be deficient in one of these vitamins. While more research needs to be done on the topic, eating a healthy diet is always vital to maintaining healthy hair. In addition to ensuring you're getting enough of these key nutrients, pay attention to other factors affecting your hair health, such as stress levels, gut health, and hormone balance. Have you found any dietary changes that have helped improve your hair health?