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7 Important vitamins and minerals against hair loss

Monday 3 November 2014
A common reason of a bad hair condition or hair loss is a deficiency of essential vitamins and minerals. Below, we have put together the top 7 of most important vitamins and minerals for healthy hair growth and prevention of hair loss.

Biotin

Biotin, or vitamin B8, is one of the most important vitamins against hair loss. Vitamin B8 is essential for maintaining healthy hair. Biotin contributes to the production of keratin, which is important for the hair, scalp and nails. Additionally, Biotin can prevent the hair from becoming grey. Amongst others, biotin can be found in soy products, nuts (especially almonds and hazelnuts), peanuts, eggs and milk.

Folic acid

Folic acid is essential for cell development and tissue growth. Because of this, it is also important for healthy hair follicles and therefore hair growth. Folic acid also ensures better blood circulation, allowing nutrients to reach the scalp easier. Folic acid is also known as vitamin B11 and is called B9 in France, Germany and the United States. Foods rich in folic acid are green leafy vegetables, sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, citrus fruits and liver.

Selenium

Selenium is a mineral that plays an important role in maintaining healthy hair. A deficiency can contribute to brittle hair and hair loss. Selenium supports the body in the processing of proteins. Since hair consists mainly of proteins, sufficient amounts of selenium are essential for hair growth. Selenium is common in many foods, in small quantities. Brazil nuts, fish and shellfish are very rich in selenium.

Zinc

Just like Selenium, Zinc has the recognized EFSA health claim that it contributes to healthy hair. Zinc ensures a proper construction of proteins and therefore all body tissues, including the hair. Zinc is also involved in the formation of keratin. It is therefore considered as one of the best substances for healthy hair growth. Low zinc values may also increase the chance of more DHT in the body and a deficiency of zinc can lead to more hairs in the telogen phase (resting phase) and thin and fragile hair. Zinc can be found in oysters, meat, brown bread, legumes and sunflower seeds, amongst others.

Iron

Iron is a component of hemoglobin, a substance which carries oxygen through the body. Iron deficiency can lead to brittle hair and hair loss. Iron can be found in many foods, such as meat, beans, dark green leafy vegetables, pumpkin seeds and seaweed. With a varied diet you are most likely to have enough iron in your body.

Vitamins from the B group

In addition to the specific B vitamins B8 (Biotin) and B11 (Folic acid), virtually all B vitamins are of great importance for healthy hair. They play an essential role in the metabolism in the cells.

A deficiency of vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) can contribute to hair loss. B2 also provides support in absorbing vitamin B6 and iron, which are both important for healthy hair growth. Vitamin B2 can be found in dairy, meat, broccoli, eggs and nuts, amongst others. Niacinamide (or Niacin, vitamin B3) ensures a dilation of the blood vessels, which stimulates the blood flow to the scalp, allowing nutrients to reach the hair and scalp easier. It can also lower cholesterol, which may contribute to a reduction in hair loss. Vitamin B3 can be found in fish, meat, nuts and grains. It is known that a deficiency in vitamin B5 (Pathothenic acid) can cause hair loss. Vitamin B5 can be found in foods including chicken, milk, grains and salmon. A deficiency in vitamin B12 (Cyanocobalamin) may contribute to hair loss and the development of grey hair. Vitamin B12 can only be found in animal products, such as meat and dairy.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A (retinol) is an antioxidant which improves the general health of the scalp. It stimulates the production of sebum. Sebum protects the hair from drying out. Ensure you are getting enough of this vitamin, but not too much: too much of this vitamin can actually stimulate hair loss. A shortage of this vitamin can lead to dry hair and a dry scalp. Vitamin A can be found in many foods, such as milk, broccoli, spinach, carrot and cabbages and with a varied diet, you should be getting enough of it.

Other important vitamins and minerals

For a healthy scalp and hair growth, vitamins C and E are important to get enough of.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that is important to maintain and build up collagen in the skin and around the hair follicle. Vitamin C also helps the body absorb iron. Vitamin C can be found in citrus fruits, strawberries, kiwi, tomatoes and green vegetables.
Vitamin E stimulates the blood flow in the scalp, so that the hair follicles receive the proper nutrients for optimal hair growth. A shortage of vitamin E may lead to hair loss and dandruff. Vitamin E is found in eggs, sunflower seeds, leafy vegetables and asparagus, amongst others.

How do you get enough of everything?

With a varied diet including plenty of fruits and vegetables, if necessary supplemented by a multivitamin tablet, you will get a lot of the necessary vitamins. For healthy hair growth, some vitamins are so important that a higher dosage gives a much better result. For other vitamins goes that a too high dosage may be damaging, both for hair growth and general health. Therefore it is important to get the right amounts and proportions. The safest, easiest and most effective solution to get all vitamins necessary against hair loss is by taking a supplement specially formulated for hair growth.

Nutritional supplements targeting hair growth

The Hair Growth Specialist has multiple nutritional supplements in its range:

Apart from vitamins and minerals, effective nutritional supplements to stimulate hair growth also contain plant extracts with DHT inhibiting-properties, such as Saw Palmetto (with the active ingredient Beta-sitosterol) and Stinging Nettle. Additionally, a number of amino acids is proven to be effective, such as Taurine. These ingredients can be found in the Foligain caplets and the Neofollics tablets.

Compared to the Foligain hair growth caplets, the Neofollics Tablets contain a number of extra ingredients which inhibit the formation of DHT and promote hair growth, such as red clover extract, EGCG (green tea extract), isoflavone complex and the amino acids L-carnitine and L-cysteine. The most complete supplement that is currently on the market are therefore the Neofllics hair growth supporting tablets. With this product, you will give your body everything it needs in one go in order to allow your hair to grow healthily and vitally from the inside out.

Want to know more?

Want to know more about the causes of hair loss and combating hair loss? Read our other articles: