Vitamin B12 Deficiency Can Lead to Hair Loss
I was shocked when one of my friends began to lose her hair a few months ago. None of her hair care products had any chemicals, and she didn't blow dry them. She found out she was deficient in vitamin B12 when she went to have a health checkup.
If you're wondering if the two are related, I can guarantee you that they are. Vitamin B12 deficiency might first be seen in the form of hair loss. As a result, getting enough vitamin B12 in your diet is essential if you want thick, full hair.
Continue reading if you want to learn more about the relationship between vitamin b12 and your hair, natural ways to get vitamin B12, as well as Vitamin B12 benefits for hair.
Hair Growth and Vitamin B12: What's the Connection?
Even though protein keratin, the primary component of your hair, has long since died, the hair follicles underneath it are still very much alive and need nourishment. Making hair requires that the follicles get enough oxygen and nutrients, which blood flow can only provide.
Hair follicles produce new hair strands when they divide and expand. They are connected to your body's vascular system via the hair bulb base's blood vessels. Through the red blood cells, which are rich in oxygen supply, oxygen is supplied back to your hair strands through vitamin B12.
Vitamins and their role in cell division and DNA replication are also essential in cellular metabolism. DNA is replicated every time a hair cell repopulates. Consequently, hair follicle development is dependent on DNA synthesis and vitamin B12 intake.
Can a Deficiency of Vitamin B12 Lead to Hair Loss?
Cells across your body have trouble replicating if you don't have enough vitamin B12. If your hair follicles cease creating new hair cells, your hair growth will be slowed.
Red blood cells need vitamin B12 for growth and maturity. Your scalp will be deprived of oxygen if you have a shortage of red blood cells. In turn, the low oxygen levels might harm your hair cells and cause them to go dormant. Hence, B12 insufficiency causes hair loss.
Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Maintaining enough vitamin B12 levels in your body is critical to avoiding hair loss. Low iron levels, hair loss, and thinning hair are symptoms of a vitamin B12 deficiency.
A Vitamin B12 deficiency may be to blame if you've noticed your hair going grey while still young. Premature fading of the hair has been linked to a shortage of vitamin B12.
B12 insufficiency may also manifest in the following ways:
- Fatigue and weakness
- Difficulty thinking clearly
- Swelling or enlargement of the tongue or mouth
- Hand numbness or tingling
- Perplexed, hazy vision
- An unusual walking style
- Loss of weight
- Loss of appetite
- Dry skin
- Natural origin
Increases in B12 levels may be achieved by following a diet rich in the appropriate nutrients. According to research, B12 insufficiency is higher for vegetarians and vegans.
In order to meet your vitamin B12 needs, if you are on a vegan diet, you should consume nutritional yeast, grains, and other cereals enriched with the vitamin.
It is naturally present in various animal products, such as hard-boiled and scrambled eggs and meats such as beef and lamb liver.
- Supplements are an excellent place to start
We believe that your whole body, including your hair, results from what you consume. B12 deficiency might cause hair loss if you don't get enough of the vitamin in your diet. However, if you are losing a lot of hair because of a B12 deficiency, you should think about getting some B12 supplements.
The tips below can guide you when thinking about going for supplements:
- Many multivitamins on the market include high levels of B12. Please consult with your doctor before taking excessive dosages since they may interfere with other drugs.
- Some individuals may suffer from a lack of stomach acid, which may cause gastric problems. B12 is not food-bound when taken as a supplement. This means that you don't need gastric acid to get it out of your body.
- Pernicious anemia is an uncommon illness that affects just a few people. B12 absorption from the intestines is severely impaired in patients with this disease. B12 injections may be necessary for those with this issue rather than tablets.
- Even if you don't eat any animal products, you still need to take a supplement even if you aren't deficient in nutrients.
- Foods high in iron
Diets high in iron are necessary for optimal health.
As we have stated before, B12 insufficiency is linked to iron deficiency. Hair thinning may be prevented by eating a diet high in iron-rich foods.
Your body is constantly pumping the iron in your bloodstream. Hemoglobin, an oxygen-carrying component of red blood cells, requires iron to be processed. It takes in oxygen from your lungs, moves it through your circulatory system, and provides it to your body's tissues, including those on your scalp.
Foods rich in iron are listed below:
- Sprouts, lentils, and beans.
- Carrots and potatoes
- Spinach and other dark green leafy veggies
- Beef that has been correctly leaned
For the system to digest vitamin B12, it must be produced as an independent nutrient from protein-rich foods. When food and saliva are combined in the mouth, the process of separation begins.
How Can B12 Deficiency-Induced Hair Loss Be Reversed?
A variety of factors may lead to hair loss, including genetic disorders, thinning hair, and extreme heat styling. To begin with, get your B12 levels checked to see whether you are actually suffering from a vitamin B12 shortage that is contributing to your hair loss.
Increasing your B12 levels may be accomplished by consuming foods that have high quantities of this vital vitamin. According to recent research, vitamin B12, together with vitamin D and iron, is an essential element of a healthy diet and may help prevent premature gray hair.
Another research indicated that supplementing the food with B12, iron, biotin, and L-lysine significantly reduced participants' hair loss. According to the study, women under the age of 50 were also shown to be the leading source of hair loss.
There has been some evidence that the synthetic vitamin B12, cyanocobalamin, may be used to treat vitamin B12 insufficiency when taken orally. Scalp treatments have also been demonstrated to thicken hair in general.
Some kinds of cancer may be made more likely by a B12 shortage. Preventative measures can only be used if they are taken early on.
Vitamin B12 Benefits for Hair
It's not only vitamin B12 that contributes to a healthy head of hair; it's a part of the B class of vitamins, which means it's not acting on its own. A lack of any of the vitamins may interfere with the other vitamins' ability to carry out their duties.
As a consequence of this vitamin shortage, you'll notice thin or brittle hair strands and slowed hair development. A well-balanced diet that includes foods high in each of the eight complex B vitamins can increase your chances of healthy hair development.
Below are some of the benefits of vitamin B12 to the hair:
- Enhances Hair Follicles
Generally, 10–100 hairs are shed every day by the average individual. There will be more than one cluster formed from all of this. However, if we begin to lose numerous hair strands each day, this is a significant issue. Hair benefits greatly from vitamin B12. It prevents the oxidation of harmful cholesterol, thus increasing circulation to your scalp. In turn, your hair gets a boost as a result of this.
- It improves the beauty of your hair
Our hair, in particular, has been a significant focus of our attention as a society in recent years. Almost every time we wash our hair, we straighten or blow-dry it. Regular hair care methods might cause your hair to become dull and lifeless if you use them too often. Straighteners and blow dryers are said to cause hair to lose its natural shine if used excessively.
There's a frequent hair-breaking pattern known as trichorrhexis nodosa, which is made worse by overheating or using solvent hair products, according to Science of Skin Founder and Medical Doctor Sruthi Gondi. This condition may also cause significant wear and tear on your hair, which will result in a dull appearance. UV rays may also harm your skin and hair if you're exposed to them for long periods.
However, substituting these synthetic hair care methods with proper vitamin B12 would make your hair good.
Vitamin B12 works miracles by resurrecting your hair to its natural state and fighting UV exposure with all of its strength. Endeavor to regularly include Vitamin B12 oil on your hair regimen to see results in a few days.
- Acidity and Oil Production Are Kept in Check
An excessive supply of oil in the hair and pH imbalances are two of the most common causes of hair loss. Itching and dandruff may result from an overproduction of oil in the hair follicles. However, Vitamin B12 can keep your hair moisturized, regulating the pH levels and reducing oil production.
- Helps With Hair Conditioning
Vitamin B12 provides characteristics that help to hydrate and condition hair. It aids in the smoothing and glistening of hair that has become brittle and unruly. Vitamin B12-rich foods should be a regular part of your diet if you want healthier hair.
- It Improves Hair Scalp
Vitamin B12 is often included in drugs given for bedsores and skin irritations. This may speed up the healing of wounds!
Most times, the scalp gets dry and flaky due to a variety of pollutants. But with vitamin B12, Seborrheic dermatitis can be prevented.
Also, Vitamin B12 deficiency may cause dry and itchy scalp. Scalp irritations may be alleviated by the anti-inflammatory effects of Vitamin B12. When applied to the skin, it can treat infections since it's fat-soluble.
- Preserves the Natural Color of Your Hair
Maintaining your natural hair color is critical to your health. Premature graying and hair loss may be prevented by using this product. If you want to slow down the aging process of your hair, it's imperative that you include vitamin B12 in your regular diet.
Losing your hair may be a painful experience. A lot of people experience this, and there are several possible causes. Regardless of one's age, it may happen to anybody. Taking an excessive amount of B12 in order to get a faster result is not recommended since everything in proportion works just fine. You'll get a better outcome if you include the nutrients in your food every day.
How Many Doses of Vitamin B12 Would Be Too Much? What's The Right Dosage?
Your age has an effect on the quantity of Vitamin B12 you should take daily. 2.4 mcg of vitamin B12 daily is recommended for everyone 14 years of age or older. There is more than twice the recommended daily allowance for pregnant women and breastfeeding women.
Vitamin B12 overdose is not harmful, but studies have shown that pregnant women with excessive B12 levels have a greater chance of their kids developing autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
In another Dutch investigation, higher levels of blood vitamin B12 were linked to a higher risk of early mortality.
In order to locate the best treatment for hair loss, one must first determine what is causing it. A B12 blood test can quickly tell if you have a vitamin B12 deficiency, which could be the cause of your hair thinning, so you can get it checked.
Make sure to get a proper diagnosis in the earliest possible time frame. This means that you should keep a watchful eye out for any early symptoms. Make an appointment with your doctor right away if you notice any unexpected or severe hair loss.