Iron deficiency and hair loss

Many women and men suffer from iron deficiency, i.e. anemia. Symptoms of iron deficiency include fatigue, shortness of breath, frequent infections, pica syndrome (read “pica”, eating inedible things like plaster, chalk, ice), brittle and brittle nails and hair loss. If you think you may be anemic, have your iron levels checked by your doctor.

Who is at risk for iron deficiency?

Anyone can suffer from iron deficiency. But women and teenage girls of childbearing age are particularly at risk. Women who have suffered from anemia, women and girls in puberty who have heavy blood loss during menstruation, or pregnant women are especially susceptible to iron deficiency. 1 in 5 women of childbearing age and approximately 50% of pregnant women will experience iron deficiency in the blood.

In the case of pregnant women, examination and screening also include monitoring of iron values. If your iron levels are low during pregnancy, your gynecologist may prescribe an iron supplement or recommend eating more iron-rich foods.

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Hair loss due to iron deficiency

Iron deficiency hair loss occurs when the body does not have enough iron to make hemoglobin in the blood. Hemoglobin is the component that carries the oxygen needed for the growth and repair of all body cells, including the cells that give rise to follicles.

Temporary hair loss, such as hair loss due to iron deficiency, is called telogen effluvium. Telogen effluvium is an abnormality in the hair growth cycle that causes hair that should normally be in anagen (that is, growing) to be prematurely moved into telogen (resting phase). Affected hair subsequently falls out. Telogen effluvium is usually temporary if you act quickly to address the cause. Since hair is one of the “unnecessary” or “unessential” parts of the body, hair growth is one of the first processes that the body resorts to when there is a lack of iron or other nutrients.

Medical tests to diagnose iron deficiency

If you think you have an iron deficiency, see your doctor to check your blood levels. Three tests can show you how much iron and iron stores you have in your body.

Determination of iron in serum (serum iron)

This test measures the amount of iron in your blood. Your blood iron level may be normal even if the total amount of iron in your body is low. Doctors usually recommend this test along with other iron tests.

Determination of ferritin in serum (serum ferritin)

By measuring levels of ferritin, a protein that helps store iron in the body, your doctor can tell how much stored iron your body has used. Low ferritin levels affect hair growth as the body tries to conserve iron for essential bodily functions.

Determination of transferrin levels (total iron binding capacity)

Transferrin is a protein in the blood that transports iron. Total iron binding capacity measures how much transferrin is not carrying iron. People with iron deficiency tend to have high levels of iron-free transferrin.

Solution for iron deficiency in hair loss

If your doctor diagnoses you with an iron deficiency, or if you simply want to increase healthy hair nutrients, eat more iron-rich foods or take an iron supplement.

Foods richest in iron include red meat, such as beef and liver. Other animal proteins such as chicken, pork, fish and shellfish are also good sources of iron. According to research, the body can absorb iron from animal sources better than iron from meatless (vegetarian) foods. Vegetarians should eat more spinach and dark leafy greens as a source of iron. Also beans and lentils, tofu, dried fruit like prunes and apricots, and prune juice.

In addition, the body can better absorb iron with the help of vitamin C. Good sources of vitamin C are red peppers, strawberries, spinach and citrus fruits.

An easier way to get more iron and vitamin C, with added hair growth benefits, is with a hair growth supplement. Choose one that contains iron and other healthy nutrients such as biotin, zinc, or marine extracts. In general, the healthier the nutrients you consume, the more stunning your crown of beauty will be.

When it comes to hair loss due to iron deficiency, remember one fact. What happens to your body today will affect your hair tomorrow. Unlike the skin, it can take several months for the negative effects of crash diets, iron deficiency or other causes of hair loss to show on hair growth. To manage hair loss due to iron deficiency, be patient and regularly take recommended doses of proven hair growth products. Your conscientiousness will pay off in just a few months!


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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