Is Biotin Good For Hair Growth?

Are Biotin Supplements Good For Hair Growth?

Should you take a biotin supplement for FASTER hair growth?

Anyone who has long hair has probably heard of the popular vitamin known by the name of “Biotin”. It’s claimed by many that taking extremely high doses of biotin speeds up hair growth significantly.

Over at the long hair forum community many women are making biotin a staple of their hair growth regimen. Some say it helps improve the quality of their hair, making it less likely to break and growth of thicker and stronger hairs. Others claims that it also actually speeds up the rate at which their hair grows.

In a poll taken on the forum, the results from taking biotin were mixed.

42% said that biotin did make their hair grow faster

40% said that biotin didn’t make any difference to hair growth

Are Biotin Supplements Good For Hair Growth?

My hair! ūüôā

I’ve personally tried biotin and I can say that for me it did seem to make a difference in my hair. It simply looked healthier and grew faster. Although this is anecdotal, take it for what¬†it’s worth! You can see my personal hair growth journey.

Throughout my hair growth I had supplemented Biotin, and my hair grew approximately 1 inch per month! Which is quite fast because the average hair growth is typically around 1/2 an inch per month.

I can’t say for certain it was the biotin that did it, but it may have contributed to the speed of my hair growth.

What are the best sources of biotin?

Biotin comes mainly from our diet and it’s very rare for someone in a developed country to actually be deficient in this important vitamin. The recommended daily intake for Biotin is 30 mcg for a man and 25 mcg for a woman.

The best sources of biotin include the following:

  • Tomatoes – 1 cup of tomatoes will provide you with 7 mcg of biotin.
  • Almonds – 1/4 of a cup of almonds will give you 14 mcg biotin.
  • Eggs – 1 egg will provide around 8 mcg of biotin.
  • Sweet Potato¬†– 1 cup of sweet potatoes will give you 8 mcg of biotin.
  • Oats¬†– 1/4 of a cup of oats will provide almost 8 mcg of biotin.
  • Walnuts¬†– 1/4 of a cup of walnuts provides almost 6 mcg of biotin.
  • Avocado¬†– One cup of avocado provides 5.4 mcg of biotin.

What are the symptoms of Biotin Deficiency?

As mentioned, a deficiency in biotin is incredibly rare in developed countries, but the symptoms to look for include some of the following:

  • Dermatitis
  • Alopecia (hair loss)
  • Central nervous system abnormalities
  • Conjunctivitis (eye inflammation)
  • Brittle nails
  • Diabetes

Most people easily meet the daily requirements of biotin, so you’re probably fine

If you’re worried whether or not you’re getting all the nutrients in your diet, you can easily do a nutritional analysis of your diet using software called CRON-O-METER.

Note: Anticonvulsants can reduce serum levels of biotin by inhibiting intestinal absorption.

What are the benefits of biotin?

The benefits of increasing biotin in our diets is not fully understood, but some of the purported benefits include:

  • Stronger, thicker, and faster hair growth
  • Improved skin health
  • Less chance of hair shedding, especially when under stress

The evidence behind the effectiveness for biotin and hair growth is lacking and more peer-reviewed scientific research needs to be done. That being said, myself and many others have experienced benefits of taking biotin.

One caveat: When taking a biotin supplement, it can increase skin oiliness and maybe cause breakouts and acne. It’s recommended that you drink lots of water and give your body time to adjust if you’re taking high doses of biotin as a supplement.

Should you supplement biotin to grow your hair faster?

Based on the mixed anecdotal evidence, it might be worth giving biotin a shot. Since we’re all different, nothing is going to work the same for everyone. We all have different needs and our lifestyles, diet, stress levels are different.

There is obviously not magic pill to make hair grow super fast, but there are things that can make some difference, however small.

In one recent study published in 2017, the researches found that in 18 reported cases of people taking biotin, all patients who received a biotin supplement reported improvements after taking the supplement

Biotin supplements can provide you with far more than what you are able to obtain with the diet. One of the supplements that I used when growing out my hair was a biotin supplement containing 5000 mcg of biotin and cold-pressed in organic coconut oil.

You can check out the reviews over at amazon

Closing thoughts…

Since so many people swear by this supplement, if you’ve never tried it before, then give it a try. If there is any further evidence to support the use of biotin, I will share in future updates to this post.

Remember, supplementing in never a substitute for a healthy and balanced diet. Supplements are simply ways to enhance our nutrition for optimal health.

I’d love to hear your experiences with biotin. Do you think it helped you grow your hair faster? Or did it improve your hair in any other way?

vegan supplements for healthy hair

Best Vegan Vitamins For Hair Growth

Choosing Vegan Vitamins For Hair Growth

Growing long hair can already be a struggle for the average girl or guy, but growing long hair when you’re eating a vegan diet can be an even bigger challenge.

The reality is that you need to be a lot more careful with your diet when you’re eating a vegan diet. And sometimes it’s easier to just ‘pop a pill’ to deal with the difficult-to-get nutrients.

When you’re not eating animal products, you will be short on a few nutrients that are important in hair growth. Any time there is a deficiency in the body, your hair is the last part of your body that takes priority.

You’re a Vegan And Have Slow Hair Growth?

One complaint that I’ve heard from vegans over the years is that their hair seems to be thinner since they started eating a vegan diet. But is it the fact that they are vegan, or is it that they are missing out on some vital nutrients that are required for hair growth?

I’ve had personal experience with this issue, and it was fixed by simply correcting for some deficiencies when I was eating a vegan diet.

It’s not just vitamins that vegans can be short on, but minerals also. Here are some of the vitamins and minerals you might be low in when you’re eating a vegan diet:

  • Vitamin B12
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin D
  • Iron
  • Zinc
  • Iodine
  • Protein

It’s easy for people who are not informed about the dangers of eating a vegan diet to become deficient in any one of these. Although ethically, being a vegan is a wonderful thing to do for the animals, it can put human health at risk.

We are omnivore’s, but due to our modernized lifestyles and technology, we can live without animal products. For ethical reasons and for health reasons, I chose to be vegan and have been vegan and healthy for five years (vegetarian for 10). And my hair is very long and healthy!

Having trouble finding vegan products products for hair growth?

As a vegan myself, I have been searching for good products to recommend people who are thinking about becoming vegan and are worried about deficiencies. These supplements cover some of the vital nutrients that you need on a vegan diet to ensure that your hair keeps growing.

Of course you will always want to eat a healthy and balanced diet as well. When you take of your body, you give it the best chance to repair, regenerate, and grow.

How to choose the right vegan-friendly supplements

Gummies¬†– These have become a popular way to take supplements. When choosing a product, make sure that it doesn’t contain any gelatin, which is derived from animals.

Read labels¬†– Don’t just trust that a product is vegan-friendly before reading the product description. If it doesn’t specifically say that it’s suitable for vegans, then read the label for animal-based ingredients.

Vitamin D form¬†– Vitamin D can be created when we expose our skin to the sun, but many of us require supplements to keep our vitamin D level up. Many vegans that I’ve spoke to are absolutely fine taking vitamin D that was derived from Sheep’s wool, since the animal was not hurt in any way during the process. However, if you still don’t feel comfortable with that, you can always look for vitamin D2 or a vitamin D3 supplements derived from wild Litchen.

Questions? Please feel free to comment below or send me a message if you’re still unsure.


Hair Anew 

Hair Anew contains many different ingredients that will help with hair growth. A large dose of Biotin (5000 mcg) may significantly improve the rate of hair growth by itself.

The supplement also contains Ginko Biloba, which is known to improve blood flow to the skin and therefore the scalp. Healthy blood flow can deliver the nutrients your hair needs to grow.

Silica is also another ingredient which stands out, and is important in maintaining the health of hair and nails.

The supplement is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.

See more details about Hair Anew.


Vegan Vitamin D3 and B12 Gummies

Two vitamins that many vegetarians and vegans alike tend to be short on. And both are vital for hair growth.

Even people who are living in sunny places in the world can be at risk of vitamin D deficiency if they work in-doors or have darker skin. If you live in the northern hemisphere, you are at risk of vitamin D deficiency.

Although many vegetarians and vegans have no problem taking vitamin D3 supplements derived from Lanolin (Sheep’s wool), this supplements provides vitamin D3 from Wild Lichen, which is one of the plant sources of vitamin D3 and is Vegan Society and Vegetarian Society registered.

Another vitamin that all vegans should take with no exception is vitamin B12. Most vegans will become deficiency in vitamin B12 if they don’t supplement.

In a recent study, it was found that 52% of vegans were deficient in vitamin B12. A more sensitive test measuring levels of methylmalnic acid showed that this increased to 92% for vegans. It’s clear that vegans must supplement vitamin B12.

This supplement is a non-GMO, Vegan-friendly supplement that you can take if you are worried that you might be deficient in these nutrients.  See more here. 


Garden of Life Vegan DHA Supplement 

Although not a “vitamin”, it nevertheless is something that many vegans miss out on when they adopt this lifestyle. As a vegan you will be avoiding one thing that can make your hair silky smooth and beautiful! Omega 3.

The essential fat is abundant in fish like Salmon; but for a vegan who wishes to obtain these fats, we must look elsewhere. Algae is one alternative source of omega 3 that you can obtain DHA. You can already get plenty of EPA from a vegan diet by consuming ALA, which is converted mostly to EPA.

This supplement also contains a powerful antioxidant known as Astaxanthin, which is great for skin and hair health.

See more info here.

While you Wait…

Before you start taking the supplements, why not create a shirt so that you can begin to record your hair growth rate of your hair.

KashTV gives you some tips on how you can measure hair growth using a shirt.

And Finally…

You need to have patience! No vitamins or pills are miracles by themselves. Hair still grows at a slower pace that we want it to. But even though we don’t have any miracle pills that can grow hair overnight, these things can make a real difference.

Remember that it’s the little things that make a difference. It’s the thing that you are consistent with for weeks and months which will improve your health and beauty.

Don’t be complacent when you’re on a vegan diet. It’s very easy to fall into deficiencies, and it can happen slowly.

And if you’re in any doubt, see your physician so they can do blood tests on you to make sure that you’re healthy. Just explain to your doctor that you’re eating a vegan diet and you would like to be tested¬† to check for vitamin and mineral deficiencies.

If you want to spread the word about veganism and attract people to it the cause…

Be a healthy vegan! ūüôā

Best probiotic for hair growth

Best Probiotic For Hair Growth

Do Probiotics Help Hair Growth?

If you’re wondering how probiotics help hair growth, then allow me to explain why you should consider taking probiotics to improve your hair. This is especially true if you have taken antibiotics in the past.

Your ‘microbiome’ is more important to your health than you might think. The human body is home to trillions of microorganisms which live symbiotically with us, helping digest our food, mediating the immune system and hormones released in our body.

Scientists are still uncovering the importance of having a healthy microbiome to our overall health.

Hair loss and other hair problems can be caused by many different things and affect both men and women. They can be caused by mineral and vitamin deficiencies, stress, hormones,  or even autoimmune diseases where the immune system attacks the hair follicles and causes excessive inflammation triggering premature hair loss.

Hair loss is usually a symptom of something else going on and not a serious concern by itself. However, hair loss can have a huge emotional impact on the person who is experiencing it. The good news is that there are many natural treatments for hair loss as well as prescription medications which can halt and even reverse it.

Most people want to go for the natural route to prevent hair loss and grow their hair longer, but one natural product for hair growth has often been overlooked: Probiotics.

Do Probiotics Help Hair Growth?

As mentioned earlier, good bacterial are very beneficial for our health. Good bacteria help keep¬† the bad bacteria in check, and also prevent overgrowth of yeast, particularly Candida. The good bacteria in our stomach is a large part of our immune system and so it’s unfortunate that overuse of antibiotics is wiping them out and causing an imbalance which affects our health. Most people as a child have received multiple courses of antibiotics. And although one of the best discoveries of the 20th century, they also are a cause of many problems too.

In a study published back in 2013 titled ‘Probiotic Bacteria Induce a ‘Glow of Health‘ researchers discovered that when mice were given large doses of good bacteria, their skin became healthier and the fur became shinier and thicker. They discovered one of the mechanisms behind this effect was due to a cytokine called Interleukin-10 which has powerful anti-inflammatory properties.

The more hairs you have in the anagen growing phase, the thicker your hair will be. This is exactly what the probiotic yogurt and good bacteria did for the mice. We also have the same cytokines and similar effects have been observed in humans using multiple strains of good bacteria.

The mice in the study who were consuming the probiotic yogurt had 70% of their hairs in anagen growth phase, 14% in catagen, and just 16% in telogen phase.

In contrast, the mice eating the normal diet without the good bacteria had just 36% of hairs in the anagen growth phase, no catagen hair follicles, and 64% in telogen phase, which is the resting or inactive phase and can last for several months.

This is a massive difference! And so it goes to show how such changes in our gut health or microbiome can affect our appearance.

What Are the Best Probiotics for Hair Growth?

When choosing a probiotic you want to consider a few things: the strains of bacteria in the probiotic. You also want to know if the bacteria are protected from stomach acid.

There are probiotic supplements which have bacteria strains that are resistant to stomach acid, and those are the ones you want to go for.

One of my favourite products that I have used on and off for several years is a great probiotic by Healthy Origins. It contains many different strains of bacteria strains which are all resistant to stomach acid, and so they can get passed their stomach and start growing.

Healthy Origins Р30 Billion CFU 

Each capsule contains approximately 30 billion colony forming units. However, at time of manufacturing, the Healthy Origin says the amount is between 60-100 billion. There are eight strains of bacteria included in the supplement, which have been shown in studies’ to have some efficacy in improving human health.

See more details here.

 

This product is relatively cheap and is made in the USA, in an FDA inspected facility. This is great because we should all be just a little weary about the products we buy online these days. That’s a huge plus in my book.

The probiotic also contains acid resistant bacteria, ensuring that the bacteria get to where they need to be so they can do their work.

The product is also vegetarian and vegan friendly.  See more details here..

How to make the probiotic more effective?

Make sure you consume foods that support the growth of bacteria. You want to eat more foods that are ‘prebiotic’.

These foods include: Raw Garlic, Raw Leeks, Raw Onions, Asparagus, Broccoli. Basically to support a healthy digestive system you want to consume as many plant foods as you can.

Are there any side effects to take probiotics?

If you have never taken probiotics before and your diet is quite poor, you might notice some changes initially but your stomach should eventually adjust. If you have any concerns about taking a probiotic supplement, please speak to your doctor.

Supplements should never replace a healthy diet, but only supplement it. Health starts from the inside and shows on the outside. If you take care of your body, your body will take care of you.

And Finally…

And if you aren’t convinced enough to take probiotics, check out the new report showing that extremely healthy 100 year olds have the same gut microbiome as healthy 30 year olds!

A healthy microbiome might help more than just your skin and your hair. It might even make you live longer in good health.

Does Saw Palmetto Work For Hair Loss?

Will Saw Palmetto work for hair loss?

You’ve probably heard of this wonder herb called Saw Palmetto before. It’s widely talked about in hair loss talk forums; some people claiming to have success while others haven’t had such luck. So, does saw palmetto work for hair loss? The short answer is that saw palmetto works for hair loss in some people, and I’ll go into why in just a moment.

Why does SAW PALMETTO work for some people? 

Some people are just more prone to the effects of DHT, and this has a lot to do with their genetics. There are also other factors, such as diet, smoking, mental health, as well as certain other hormones which can affect the success of treatments aimed at reducing the level of DHT to stop hair loss.

One study showed that higher levels of IGF-1 in patients treated with propecia experienced better results over a 12 month period, whereas those who experienced a drop in IGF-1 did not improve and some got worse!

One way to increase IGF-1 is to take a protein supplement, like whey protein. I talk about this in my post, supplements that support hair growth.

Benefits of saw palmetto for hair loss

Saw palmetto is an extract from the fruit of a plant known as Serenoa Repens, and it’s magic for hair loss comes from a plant sterol known as beta-sitosterol. In both men and women, we have an enzyme called 5-alpha-reductase, which converts a small amount of the available testosterone to a very potent androgen called¬†dihydrotestosterone (DHT).

It’s been found in studies that this plant sterol is able to inhibit this enzyme which is responsible for testosterone being converted to DHT, and therefor reduce the damage to hair follicles that are sensitive to this androgen.Does Saw Palmetto Work For Hair Loss?

One preliminary study showed that a combination of saw palmetto and astaxanthin (a carotenoid found in foods such as salmon, lobster, krill, algae, among other sources. This study was conducted in vitro, but astaxanthin is readily absorbed and utilised by the body, so it would be a great addition to prevent hair loss from DHT.

In another double blind placebo controlled trial to determine whether or not saw palmetto worked for men suffering from androgenetic alopecia, 60% of the men in the treatment group reported an improvement upon their final visit.

OTHER HEALTH BENEFITS OF SAW PALMETTO

Saw palmetto is a herb that is not just great for treating hair loss, it can also improve and treat other conditions such as:

  • Chronic pelvic pain syndrome
  • Prostate enlargement
  • Reduce risk of prostate cancer

saw palmetto hair loss dosage

Saw palmetto is a really safe herb to take, and for it to be effective for hair loss you would need to take at least 200 mg, twice a day. A good standardized extract containing 320 mg of sterols is one by Sonora Nutrition. This should be enough to see a result, so just start at capsule of saw palmetto one a day.

DHT Blocker supplement

Click to see reviews on Amazon

DHT Blocker containing Saw Palmetto and other ingredients

This product combines many different ingredients to act synergistically with saw palmetto to block DHT.

Zinc Рlow levels of zinc can cause more testosterone to be converted into DHT, which is bad for your hair. Many people are also deficient in zinc. Those who are at most risk are vegans and vegetarians, and those who eat a lot of plant foods, as they are high in copper, which decreases absorption of zinc.

Green Tea¬†– EGCG – the main active component of green tea – has been found to inhibit 5-alpha reductase type 1, thus lowering DHT production. Green tea also helps block inflammation and reduces scarring, which is good because that is one of the reasons why hair won’t grow back.

Stinging Nettle РOften drank as a tea, this supports prostate health, reduces DHT and estrogen in men.

Probiotics – As mentioned in one of my other articles, our microbiome is very important in the growth cycle of hair. Read how probiotics can increase hair growth here.¬†If you’ve ever taken antibiotics before, or if you have a bad diet, then it’s possible that you have a microbiome which is not good.

.This supplement also contains other ingredients which are thought to help block DHT and improve hair growth. These compounds all act synergistically together, and they all have some evidence which prove their efficacy in reducing DHT and improving hair growth in men who are suffering from androgenetic alopecia.

See the reviews of this DHT blocker.

saw palmetto side effects in men

Saw palmetto is very well tolerated and side effects are rare and completely reversible. Side effects may include nausea, headache, insomnia, muscle pain and depression. If you have any of these side effects, discontinue and speak with your doctor.

Some men may experience shedding when they begin a hair loss regimen. Hair fall is common when there is a sudden change in hormone levels. This can be a sign that the treatment is working. Don’t panic, because within a few months, new and better quality hair will grow back.

When I started taking supplements to block DHT, I noticed that my hair would fall out, but grow back much thicker and stronger as time went on. This can take a few cycles before things stabalize and you see the maximum improvement possible. For example, men who take finasteride improve 2 years after treatment. A few men continue to improve for up to 10 years

can women take saw palmetto for hair loss?

Studies have been undertaken looking at the effect of blocking DHT in women who have been diagnosed with androgenetic alopecia, but the results say that even powerful medications such as propecia are not effective.

Women who use other medications for hair loss, such as spironolactone have seen more positive results. So I do not recommend saw palmetto for women with hair loss due androgenetic alopecia.

Children should not take saw palmetto.

Saw Palmetto research

Saw Palmetto has been studied for years, and has a good safety profile compared to medications such as finasteride. Men who take finasteride are at risk of various side effects from taking the drug long term, which is why some men are looking for something more natural and less risky.

In a study conducted in 2012, researchers compared finasteride with saw palmetto and the results were as expected, in that finasteride was more powerful and not only treated frontal hair loss and hair loss at the top of the head, but men who took saw palmetto for hair loss saw increased hair growth, more so at the vertex.

And as mentioned already, one earlier study study conducted in 2002, saw that 60% of the men taking saw palmetto had a highly positive response to taking the supplement. The men in the study were between 23 and 64 years of age.

So, there is clearly research to show that saw palmetto does have some efficacy in treating hair loss in men. However, more research needs to be done. For now at least, it’s a good alternative to drugs like finasteride.

Is taking Saw Palmetto worth it?

If you’re still wondering if saw palmetto works for hair loss, you simply have to just try it for yourself and then wait for a few months, even up to a year to see the results. Saw palmetto is a useful supplement to take for hair loss if you are also addressing the problem in other ways.

Saw Palmetto by itself is by no means a magical cure, but when combined with other ingredients, it will be much more effective in combating hair loss in men.

Develop a strategy that is specific to your needs, and your problem.

I would recommend for anyone suffering from male pattern baldness to try out saw palmetto for at least 6 months, in combination with a healthy diet, exercise routine and perhaps a standard multivitamin.

If you have any questions related to saw palmetto and hair loss, please shoot me an email or leave a comment! ūüôā

Check out the range of Saw Palmetto supplements.

Also read:

Growing long hair as a guy

Spearmint fights hair loss

REFERENCES

The expression of insulin-like growth factor 1 in follicular dermal papillae correlates with therapeutic efficacy of finasteride in androgenetic alopecia. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12894070

A preliminary investigation of the enzymatic inhibition of 5alpha-reduction and growth of prostatic carcinoma cell line LNCap-FGC by natural astaxanthin and Saw Palmetto lipid extract in vitro. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16093232

Comparitive effectiveness of finasteride vs Serenoa repens in male androgenetic alopecia: a two-year study. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23298508