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The Role Of Vitamin A in Preventing Hair Loss
One key factor in maintaining a growing protein on a part of one’s biological body is obvious: one must maintain a healthy diet. Although certain factors have been definitely identified as contributors to hair loss, we must keep in mind that hair is part of the complete biological system of the human body. Being a system, dysfunctions in one part of the system can contribute to dysfunctions in other parts; chain reactions occur when one part of the body malfunctions, causing other parts within the system to falter.
To maintain optimum health, it is best to maintain a healthy diet and regular exercise regimen. Defining exactly what a healthy diet is when it comes to preventing hair loss can be a little more complex. Principally, the main vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that one must ingest in some form to maintain healthy hair are vitamin A, all B vitamins – particularly vitamins B-6 and B-12, folic acid, biotin, vitamin C, vitamin E, copper, iron, zinc, iodine, protein of course, silica, essential fatty acids (EFA’s, formerly known as vitamin F) and last but not least one must consume water.
There are also certain foods that may cause dysfunctions that will contribute to hair loss. The best way to maintain a healthy vitamin and mineral intake is a good diet. It is not necessary or advisable to go out and buy a bunch of over-the-counter vitamin supplements in order to achieve your suggested nutritional levels. Many over-the-counter vitamins are chemically processed and are not completely absorbed into the system. It is also easy to overdose oneself with over the counter vitamins particularly when taking supplements of fat-soluble vitamins and minerals, causing toxicity and adverse reactions. The likelihood of doing this is far less with food; therefore it is always best to obtain the bulk of your vitamin and mineral requirements from whole foods.
Vitamin A is a key component to developing healthy cells and tissues in the body, including hair. Additionally it works with silica and zinc to prevent drying and clogging of the sebaceous glands, the glands vital to producing sebum, which is an important lubricant for the hair follicle. Vitamin A deficiencies commonly cause thickening of the scalp, dry hair, and dandruff. Air pollution, smoking, extremely bright light, certain cholesterol-lowering drugs, laxatives, and aspirin are some known vitamin A inhibitors. Liver, fish oil, eggs, fortified milk, and red, yellow, and orange vegetables are good sources for vitamin A, as are some dark green leafy vegetables like spinach. Be particularly careful if you take vitamin A supplements, as vitamin A is fat-soluble, allowing the body to store it and making it easy for the body to overdose on vitamin A. Vitamin A overdoses can cause excessively dry skin and inflamed hair follicles, and in some cases ironically can cause hair loss. If you choose to take supplements of this vitamin, consult with a specialist first. As mentioned above, the likelihood of overdosing by achieving your vitamin A intake by food sources is almost nil, so it is best to attempt to achieve this at all costs.
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Dr. Leroy Rebello is a well established and internationally qualified anti-aging consultant and cosmetologist from Mumbai and a director in Eternesse – the best skin clinic in Mumbai. He lectures in reputed Institutions such as AIIMS, JIPMER and other Medical Colleges around India. With over 10 Research Papers published in Indexed Journals, Dr. Rebello is continuously researching and developing new treatments and cures.
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