Hair loss, or androgenic alopecia, has been a concern for many individuals, and it’s not just a male problem. About 40% of those suffering from hair loss are women. Recently, there’s a lot of interest in seeking effective hair loss remedies that are more naturally based with fewer side effects.
There are many natural remedies that have been claimed to help with hair loss. Some of these remedies have more scientific evidence to support them than others. Below are just a few examples of natural ingredients that have shown promise for those who struggle with hair loss (alopecia).
Remedies with scientific results
- Biotin: Biotin (Vitamin B7) is a B vitamin that is important for hair growth. A study found that participants taking biotin supplements anywhere from 2 to 6 months saw a significant increase in hair growth. The results pertain mainly to those who have a Biotin deficiency, so get your biotin level checked before spending money on supplements.
- Omega-3 fatty acids: Omega-3 fatty acids are found in higher concentrations in fish oil, wheat germ and borage oil. They have anti-inflammatory properties that may help to reduce hair loss. A study found that taking fish oil supplements for 12 weeks led to a significant increase in hair growth in people with hair loss. According to the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 6-month supplementation with omega 3, 6 and antioxidants resulted in thicker, healthier hair.
- Saw palmetto: Saw palmetto is a plant that has been used for centuries to treat a variety of health conditions, including hair loss. A study found that taking saw palmetto supplements for 24 months led to a significant increase in hair growth in 38% of the participants.
- Rosemary Oil: This aromatic essential oil was shown to be as effective as Monoxidil 2% after 6 months, according to a randomized controlled study reported by the National Institutes of Health. Pure Rosemary oil is very concentrated, however, so it’s best to add a few drops to a carrier oil like coconut or sunflower oil before applying it to skin or scalp.
Other Hair Loss Tips
There are many natural remedies that have been claimed to help with hair loss. Some of these remedies have more scientific evidence to support them than others.
It is important to note that there is no one-size-fits-all solution for hair loss. There can be many causes of hair loss; only androgenic alopecia is covered here. In addition, what works for one person may not work for another. If you are concerned about hair loss, it is important to see a doctor or dermatologist to get a diagnosis and discuss treatment options.
Here are some general tips that may help to slow further hair loss:
- Eat a healthy diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
- Get enough protein, iron and zinc.
- Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.
- Get stress under control.
- Protect your hair from the sun and other environmental damage.
- Use gentle shampoos and conditioners.
- Avoid excessive hair styling.
(Disclaimer; this article is not an attempt to provide medical advice or treatment. If you have concerns, please seek treatment from a licensed medical professional.)