Hair loss or
baldness (alopecia) is much more common in men than in women. The
exact cause of hair loss is not known but it is believed to involve
heredity, hormones and aging. Some drugs (used in cancer therapy)
can also cause hair loss.
baldness is the most common type of hair loss affecting men. It
depends on the male hormones (androgens) and runs in a family. The
hair loss usually begins on the sides, near the front, or on the top of
the head towards the back. Hair loss can begin at any age.
Some people may have receding hairline but some can go completely bald.
Female-pattern baldness is less common. It causes the hair to thin
in the front, on the sides or on the top but seldom leads to total hair
loss. Female hair loss may be linked to hormonal changes arising from
menopause, aging and thyroid problem.
areata is a condition in which hair is lost suddenly in a particular area
due to acute illness or emotional stress.
The hair can grow back after a few months. This condition is less
common than male-pattern baldness.
is hard to cure. It can be treated by hair transplantation, and
some medications such as topical minoxidil and oral drug finasteride.
However, the medications are only effective for a small percentage of
people and usually, hair growth ceases when the medications are
If the hair loss is caused
by conditions such as poor blood circulation, radiation therapy,
chemotherapy, vitamin and nutrient deficiencies, thyroid problem, stress,
etc., hair can grow back when the treatment ends, or health condition
improves, or via a change of diet with nutritional supplements.
Vitamin and food
supplements for hair loss:
Vitamin B complex
Vitamin B complex is essential for healthy
hair growth. A deficiency in B vitamins is linked with hair loss.
The B vitamins are best taken together as they work synergistically to
promote the functioning of different organs, including hair and skin.
Vitamin B complex is also good for stress relief which is often associated
with hair loss.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that protects hair
follicles from free radical damage. It also improves blood
circulation in the scalp. Vitamin C also helps the absorption of
iron which is needed for hair growth.
Vitamin E increases oxygen uptake and improves scalp circulation.
This vitamin is important for hair follicles to grow hair. Vitamin E
(d-alpha-tocopherol) can be taken daily or massaged into the scalp to
promote blood circulation and hair growth.
Deficiency of zinc may weaken the hair shaft.
Zinc promotes hair growth by enhancing immune function and stimulating
cell reproduction and tissue repair. Zinc also maintains the oil
secreting glands of hair follicles, preventing hair from falling off.
Taking zinc supplements at 50-100 mg daily for 3-4 weeks helps to reduce
hair loss. However, excessive zinc intake at a long period of time
can trigger hair loss probably because excess zinc hinders the absorption
of other minerals (e.g. copper, manganese) which are also needed for hair
Essential fatty acids
EFAs have anti-inflammatory effect and prevent
dry and brittle hair. A deficiency in essential fatty acids may lead
to hair loss or unhealthy hair. EFAs also help to transport fat
soluble vitamins such as vitamins A, D, E, K to hair follicles.
He Shou Wu (Polygoni
This Chinese herb is used to strengthen the
blood and the jing. It has been used to treat premature hair loss
and graying in China since the ancient time. He Shou Wu can be taken as
supplement, or used to make tonic soup. The herb is often added to
shampoos and conditioners that treat thinning hair or gray hair.
Ginkgo is another ancient Chinese herb.
It improves blood circulation to the peripherals of the body including the scalp.
Better blood flow also means that more oxygen and nutrients can be brought
to the scalp, promoting hair growth and the repair of damaged hair.
Shampoos and conditioners
containing biotin, Aloe, vitamin C & E, jojoba oils, ginseng, He Shou Wu.
Country Life, Maxi-Hair
Nature's Plus, Ultra Hair Plus with MSM
(use code "WAN045" - get $5 off your first order)