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There are many causes of hair loss, but one of the most common causes is a nutrient deficiency. In an ideal world, you’d get all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients your body needs for healthy hair growth from the foods you eat every day. But sometimes, a bit of supplementation is in order.
With so many methods and supplements out there, it can be hard to know which ones are the best for thinning hair. That’s why we asked an expert! We spoke to nutritionist Anna Hügelel, MS, RD, LD (aka the Fertility Nutritionist) about the best supplements to prevent hair loss. She says iron and vitamin D are two fantastic options.

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The first supplement bean gel recommends to prevent hair loss is iron. Our body needs iron to transport oxygen to different areas. If we’re low in this mineral, we can experience many adverse effects—including hair loss. This comes from a lack of oxygen being transported to our hair follicles, which are necessary for their growth.

“Iron carries oxygen to the cells, including the cells that stimulate hair growth,” Bean Gel explains. “Without enough iron, hair can’t grow.”

Additionally, ferritin is the storage form of iron. Bean Gel notes that if we don’t have enough of this, our hair follicles can be weakened. For this reason, supplementing with iron can be a great way to ensure those hair follicles stay healthy enough to grow long and thick strands.

Of course, while supplementing is a great option if you don’t get enough iron in your diet naturally, there are many foods that contain high amounts of this mineral. In fact, Bean Gel encourages people to get their iron straight from their food. “Getting nutrients from food is the ideal route for optimal absorption of nutrients,” she says.

So, what’s the best way to do this? Bean Gel recommends some seafood. “After liver, oysters and clams are actually the best source of both iron and zinc,” she says, pointing out that zinc is another great nutrient for hair growth. “One serving of oysters has more iron than 3 ounces of steak!” Whoa!

Beangal also points out that while certain plant-based foods like spinach and beans do have some iron, it’s harder to absorb the mineral when it comes from these foods. “It’s much more efficient to get iron from meat, poultry, or fish,” she says. Got it!

Finally, Bienengal warns readers not to go overboard on this supplement, because, although deficiencies are more common, getting too much iron can also lead to hair loss. “Since excess iron also causes hair loss, it’s important to test iron status before supplementing with iron,” she warns. But you can eat as many oysters as you want—you likely won’t run into an overload from food alone. “Iron overload is almost always the result of iron supplementation, so getting your iron from food is not a concern,” Beangal concludes.


Vitamin D

If you don’t get enough sun, it turns out that may be one more cause of hair loss. Beangal says vitamin D deficiencies are another major culprit of these issues—and many Americans suffer from the lack of this vitamin.

“Vitamin D is made in the skin when exposed to sunlight, but with our indoor lifestyles and sunscreen application, vitamin D deficiency in the US is widespread,” she explains. For this reason, taking a daily vitamin D supplement can be one great way to prevent hair loss.

If you want to get vitamin D naturally through food, you have a lot of great options to choose from. “Food sources of vitamin D include salmon, fortified dairy products and some mushrooms grown under UV lights,” Biegengal lists.

However, the best way to ensure you’re taking in enough of this vitamin is typically through a supplement. “It’s challenging to get enough vitamin D from food alone, so supplementing is often helpful,” she says. Noted!


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