Imagine watching day by day as your hair begins to fall out while brushing, and there does not appear to be much replacing it on your head. Slight thinning becomes apparent and you realize you are losing your hair. So what type of vitamins can you take to keep your hair, whether it's to prevent it from falling out or help it grow back? Or better yet, if your hair has not yet started to shed excessively, what vitamins can you take for hair loss now that may help stave it off?
Vitamin A is an antioxidant that aids in scalp oil production. It's important to note that excess amounts of vitamin A can have undesirable effects, by inhibiting hair growth, and can even be toxic. The daily recommended dose is 5,000 IU however the Linus Pauling Institute of Oregon University has noted increased risk of developing bone diseases such as osteoporosis associated with 5,000IU intake, and therefore some supplement manufacturers have reduced content to 2,500IU.
Just as the name suggests, the Bs are complex...there are many of them, and some of them depend on one another in order to function.
B12 can be responsible for hair loss by itself simply due to a deficiency. Frequently injections of B12 can resolve hair loss issues. It is not stored well by the body and is required for the body's use of oxygen and for metabolism. It is needed for activation of B6 and helps in creating niacin. B12 is most absorbable when taken with vitamin C and the daily recommended dose is 50mg. B6 is also thought to prevent hair loss. It also aids in hair coloring and has a major role in creation of niacin, which is needed for healthy circulation. B6 must be entirely obtained through diet or supplementation because the human body cannot synthesize it by itself. The daily recommended dose ranges from 1.3 to 2mg. B3, also known as niacin, is thought to reduce cholesterol in the scalp, which inhibits hair growth. It is also essential for healthy blood circulation to the body and scalp. The daily recommended dose is 16 to 18mg.
Biotin deserves special mention. It is also a B vitamin but its importance in the role of hair growth cannot be overstated. While it can be consumed, it was once said by clinical researcher Andrew Lessman that thousands of calories would have to be eaten to get the amount of biotin needed to make a difference. It promotes hair growth and is crucial to prevent hair dryness. The daily recommended dose is 30mcg.
Vitamin C is a natural antioxidant and helps maintain healthy hair. It aids in synthesis of collagen and is readily available in the diet. The daily recommended dose is 90 to 120mg.
Vitamin E is vital to scalp circulation and cell regeneration, both necessary for hair growth. The daily recommended dose is 15 to 19mg.