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Supplements and herbs for hair growth

Supplements and herbs for hair growth have always been a hot topic in the beauty community. We are all aware of the fact that true beauty needs an inside-out approach.

Before we continue along the lines of herbs, vitamins and supplements kindly keep in mind that every one of us is different and our needs are different. Kindly keep your current health condition, allergies, etc. in mind and check with your healthcare provider before you make any lifestyle changes.

Some of the main culprits of hair health deterioration are:

  1. Environmental damages
  2. Heat styling
  3. Overuse of hair products (stronghold hair sprays and gels)
  4. Crash dieting
  5. Stress
  6. Hormonal changes due to pregnancy, nursing, menopause, etc.
  7. Vitamin deficiencies

In this video, we are addressing the non-hereditary causes of hair loss and the possible reasons behind it.

Western Approach

First of all, it is important to mention that Iron deficiency and low thyroid function is a big reason for non-hereditary hair loss in many people. So it is important to get yourself checked for hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. Another thing to get checked for is your ferritin levels and haemoglobin levels.

Biotin is a supplement that is taken as soon as anyone experiences hair fall. But it is way more effective to take a multivitamin containing biotin and ensuring to stay hydrated as biotin alone is said to cause acne in some people. Also, if you are someone who drinks alcohol regularly it is important to know that alcohol inhibits biotin absorption.

Based on your age, gender, and health condition, your doctor can prescribe for you the perfect multi-vitamin. Ensuring you have a diet rich in protein, leafy greens and fiber is essential for both your hair health and skin health. Zinc is vital for the growth and repair of hair tissue and a deficiency of zinc is related to hair loss.

Hair thinning is associated with silica deficiency so bamboo silica or bamboo extract is a supplement that might be beneficial for you. A lot of women have reported a change in the thickness of their hair strands after 2 to 3 months of silica intake along with a balanced diet. It is also essential to note that Vitamin D deficiency could also contribute to hair loss and lackluster hair.

Ayurvedic Approach

Ayurveda treats hair loss based on asthi dathu (bone tissue) health and also aims at balancing the three doshas in the body. Vata imbalance manifests as dry brittle hair. Herbs like Ashwagandha and Triphala for elimination is a good start.  An ayurvedic practitioner can help you identify your dosha imbalances and guide to a lifestyle and diet that is perfectly tailor-made for you.

Ingesting Triphala as directed by your doctor pacifies three doshas and improves tissue nutrition throughout the body which inevitably supports hair health and growth. To reduce excess heat or pitta on your scalp, mix  Amla powder or Amalaki along with yogurt into a loose paste and apply it on your scalp and hair. Cover it with a disposable shower cap for 15 to 20 minutes and wash it off with a mild shampoo or a mixture of Reetha and Shikakai.

Applying hair packs is called Thala pothichil and I personally do it only once or twice a month. However, scalp massage is a part of my daily routine and I recommend Neelibhringadi Keratailam from Kottakkal to everyone as it has all the herbs for thick hair growth and preventing premature greys.

Rasayanas that are generally prescribed for hair health are Chyavanaprasam and Narasimharasayanam. Other herbs that are perfect for hair health are Bhringraj, Brahmi, Amalaki powder, and Hibiscus. Henna powder is highly regarded for hair health, however it has the tendency to dry your hair especially if you have curly or wavy hair.

Telogen Effluvium

Telogen Effluvium is different from Alopecia Areata. Telogen Effluvium is a temporary hair loss caused by trauma. Antidepressants are apparently another cause for Telogen Effluvium. You can read more about it here.

While these tips can be used to manage the current health of your hair, it is important to visit your health care provider regularly and check with them before including any supplements or herbs into your diet. Another key element to shiny hair is drinking enough water daily. Keep in mind that though there are quick fixes, the key to everlasting beauty is embracing who you are and maintaining a beauty regime that is easy and consistent.


  1. I was using triphala earlier, will try using now

    • Soumya Midhun Soumya Midhun

      So glad to hear that Sonali <3

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