Resveratrol for Hair Loss
DISCLAIMER: This article has been written for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
Hair is an important part of your personality. People spend a lot of time and money to get the perfect hairstyle they want. They go to salons, get expensive hair treatments done, and use branded oils, shampoos, and conditioners. Some people also try different DIY remedies.
Even after all the above-mentioned things, many people still encounter the nightmare of hair loss. It can be attributed to their lifestyle or age-related changes. Hair loss can also occur as a result of autoimmune disorders.
So what can you do to prevent hair loss? Apart from medical treatments, cosmetics products, and natural remedies what you can use are resveratrol supplements.
Before getting into the details of resveratrol and its potential benefits let’s first discuss the types of hair loss and their causes.
TYPES OF HAIR LOSS
Hair loss can be due to aging, hormonal disturbances, autoimmune disorders, and other factors. Below is a list of different types of hair loss along with their common causes:
- Androgenetic Alopecia – It is one of the most common types of hair loss. The male pattern baldness or androgenetic alopecia occurs due to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) sensitivity. This type of hair loss mainly affects males because the levels of testosterone are higher in men than in women.
- Involutional Alopecia – It is the result of a naturally occurring aging process in which your hair becomes short and thin. You also begin to lose hair follicles which leads to further hair loss.
- Cicatricial Alopecia – It is also known as scarring alopecia. In this disorder, the hair follicles are replaced by scar tissue leading to permanent loss of hair.
- Anagen Effluvium – It is a diffuse type of hair loss that has a very rapid onset. It can cause an individual to lose all their hair suddenly. The main cause of anagen effluvium is chemotherapy but it can also occur due to an infection, radiation exposure, or autoimmune disorders.
- Scalp Folliculitis – It is an inflammatory disorder of hair follicles mainly caused by bacterial infections. The inflammatory process destroys hair follicles leading to hair loss.
- Alopecia Areata – It is a type of patchy baldness which occurs due to autoimmune disorders.
WHAT IS RESVERATROL?
Resveratrol is a naturally occurring compound with powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Red grapes are the main source of resveratrol. Apart from that, it is also found in different kinds of berries, nuts, and chocolate.
Resveratrol works by activating mitochondrial enzymes known as sirtuins. These enzymes when activated promote metabolic processes occurring in the mitochondria and within the cell. When mitochondrial functions are at their optimum levels your overall health improves.
Resveratrol being a flavonoid may also protect you from damages caused by blood clotting and high cholesterol levels. It may also play a role in suppressing the growth of different types of tumors.
NATURAL SOURCES OF RESVERATROL
Some of the common and easily available food sources of resveratrol are:
- Red Grapes – The skin of perfectly ripe red grapes is a rich source of resveratrol. Wines made up of red grapes also contain resveratrol.
- Berries – Blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries all are good sources of resveratrol. These berries are also rich in other antioxidants that can be very beneficial for your physical and mental health.
- Nuts – All kinds of nuts including almonds, cashews, walnuts, and pistachios are good sources of resveratrol.
- Cocoa – Resveratrol is found in the shells of cocoa beans. All the products made of cocoa including cocoa powder and chocolate are great sources of resveratrol.
- Peanut Butter – An all-organic peanut butter is a rich source of resveratrol along with other nutrients. However, it is not recommended if you are allergic to nuts.
HOW RESVERATROL CAN PREVENT HAIR LOSS?
When you become older the blood supply to your skin and hair follicles is decreased. The essential nutrients don’t reach hair follicles and hence you begin to lose your hair. Resveratrol can increase angiogenesis i.e. new blood vessel formation. These new blood vessels ensure the proper delivery of oxygen and other nutrients to skin and hair follicles and promote hair growth.
Endothelial dysfunction is also an important cause of hair loss. It may cause vessels to constrict and strangulate. Endothelial dysfunction can also lead to inflammatory reactions, thrombosis, and vascular damage. When the blood supply to hair follicles is damaged in such a bad manner it can cause the death of hair follicles and ultimately hair loss. Resveratrol may prevent this endothelial dysfunction and provide good growth to your hair.
Another main cause of hair loss is oxidative damage to hair follicles. Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant. It protects your hair follicles against oxidative stress and prevents hair loss.
Hair follicles are present in the dermis of the skin. When your skin is subjected to aging it also affects your hair follicles. Resveratrol can slow down the progression of age-related changes and improve the overall health of your skin. This is beneficial for hair follicles. It will promote hair growth and prevent age-related hair loss.
Hair loss can also occur due to different inflammatory conditions of the skin. The anti-inflammatory properties of resveratrol protect your skin and hair follicles from damage caused by inflammation. This will not only prevent hair loss but also other diseases of the skin and hair follicles.
WAYS TO INCREASE RESVERATROL CONSUMPTION
Resveratrol is found in many delicious food items. Increasing the resveratrol intake through dietary changes is a healthy way. However, it may require you to consume large quantities of foods containing resveratrol. This may not be a convenient option for some people. Hence, the more appropriate way to enhance your resveratrol consumption is through resveratrol supplements. They are easy to use in your daily routine and will help you achieve your goals in less time.
The typical dose for adults ranges between 250-1000mg daily. However, it is always advised that you consult your physician to get the personalized dosage according to your needs and underlying health conditions.
Resveratrol is well tolerated and side effects are limited to gastrointestinal distress. Common side effects include:
Resveratrol is considered safe to use but some conditions require you to be cautious and use resveratrol with great care. Some of those conditions are:
- Pregnancy And Breastfeeding – Women must be extra cautious with everything they consume while they are pregnant or breastfeeding. Although resveratrol found in natural foods like grapes, berries, and nuts is safe to use. But other sources like wine must not be used by pregnant and lactating women.
- Bleeding Disorders – Resveratrol may have a negative effect on blood clotting ability. If you consume resveratrol in a bleeding disorder it can increase your risk of bruising and bleeding. Hence, talk to your doctor before starting resveratrol supplements if you have any kind of bleeding disorder.
- Surgery – Due to the above-mentioned reason resveratrol can increase the risk of bleeding during and after the surgery. Therefore it is advised that you stop resveratrol supplementation at least two weeks prior to any scheduled surgery.
- Hormone Sensitive Conditions – Resveratrol may exhibit estrogen like effects. Therefore, if you have any hormone-sensitive conditions like breast cancer, ovarian cancer, uterine cancer, uterine fibroids, or endometriosis then you must not use resveratrol supplements. Resveratrol can further exacerbate these conditions.
INTERACTIONS OF RESVERATROL WITH OTHER DRUGS
Resveratrol is a chemical and has the potential to interact with other chemicals like the drugs we consume to treat different diseases. Two of the most common interactions of resveratrol are:
RESVERATROL AND ANTICOAGULANTS
Anticoagulants are also known as antiplatelet drugs. These drugs inhibit the normal blood clothing occurring within the body. Resveratrol also has the potential to hinder blood clotting. If you combine resveratrol with anticoagulants then your risk of bruising and bleeding increases many folds.
RESVERATROL AND DRUGS METABOLIZED BY LIVER
Some of the medicines that you use are not in their active forms. When they enter your body liver metabolizes them. This metabolism activates the drug. Resveratrol can affect the rate of metabolism of these drugs. In turns, the therapeutic effects of a drug can be altered. Even the side effects of drugs can also be amplified due to interactions between these drugs and resveratrol.
IN A NUTSHELL
Losing your hair is a horrifying experience. It can even affect your self-esteem and confidence. There are many medical treatments and natural remedies that claim to prevent hair loss but either they are expensive or difficult to use in daily routine. However, there is still hope in the form of resveratrol supplements. This naturally occurring compound prevents hair loss and is super easy to incorporate into your lifestyle.
It is recommended that you speak to your healthcare provider before starting resveratrol supplements especially if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or taking medications for any underlying medical conditions.