Vitamin D – an essential nutrient that has an impact on our bones, skin and hair! While we absorb Vitamin D through sun exposure primarily, there comes a time when your body lacks Vitamin D, especially during Winter when we aren’t exposed to the sun as much as during summer.
In this article, I am going to explain the link between Vitamin D and hair loss and how a Vitamin D deficiency can cause hair loss.
Does A Vitamin D Deficiency Cause Hair Loss?
Up to 50% of the world’s population doesn’t get enough sun. According to research, having a Vitamin D deficiency can cause hair loss. Since Vitamin D stimulates hair follicles and promotes hair growth, a lack of Vitamin D can lead to thinning hair.
There is also evidence that a Vitamin D deficiency can be linked to alopecia areata. You can check out one of my previous posts to learn more about the types of hair loss.
Spending more time indoors can be one of the main reasons for insufficient Vitamin D levels. Try to spend more time outdoors and soak up the sun. That way you will make sure to absorb more Vitamin D and, as a result, your hair will likely grow back.
Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms
If your hair started thinning although you’ve never had any problems with your hair before, your hair loss might be caused by a Vitamin D deficiency.
The following symptoms may indicate that your body needs Vitamin D:
- mood changes (depression or anxiety)
- chronic pain
- hair loss
- slow wound healing
- high blood pressure
- muscle weakness
If there is a lack of sunlight, eating foods that are rich in Vitamin D can restore the balance, which brings me to the next point.
Foods That Are Rich In Vitamin D
The Reference Daily Intake (RDI) is 600 IU of Vitamin D, which you can consume by eating specific foods. In case you don’t get enough sunlight, here is a list of foods that are high in Vitamin D:
1. Salmon: Salmon is a great source of Vitamin D. While wild salmon contains about 988 IU of Vitamin D, farmed salmon contains about 250 IU, which makes 25% per serving.
2. Canned Tuna: Canned tuna contains up to 236 IU of Vitamin D in a 3,5-ounce serving, which makes half of the RDI. It’s way cheaper than fresh fish.
3. Herring And Sardines: Being one of the best sources of Vitamin D, canned, raw, smoked or pickled herring is a good Vitamin D source. Herring contains 1628 IU of Vitamin D in a 3,5-ounce serving. Sardines contain about 272 IU of Vitamin D, which makes 45% of the RDI.
4. Oysters: Oysters are rich in nutrients and Vitamin D and contain 320 IU of Vitamin D per serving, which makes 53% of the RDI.
5. Cod Liver Oil: Cod Liver Oil is another option for consuming Vitamin D if you are not a big fan of fish. It has about 450 IU of Vitamin D per teaspoon, which clocks in at whopping 75% of the RDI.
6. Shrimps: Being low in fat, shrimps contain around 152 IU of Vitamin D per serving, which makes 25% of the RDI.
7. Fortified Food: If you are vegetarian or are not that much into fish, fortified food can be an excellent option for you. These include:
- Soy milk
- Cow’s milk
- Cereal and oatmeal
- Orange juice
Vitamin D Supplements In Pill Or Tablet Form
Vitamin D pills or tablet supplements can be a good way as well if your doctor has determined that your Vitamin D levels are low (less than 20 ng/ml). You can either buy Vitamin D supplements at your local pharmacy or purchase it online.
Though Vitamin D tablets are usually harder to swallow than the gel caps, they tend to be much cheaper.
There are two types of Vitamin D: Vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol), which comes from plants and Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol), manufactured by fish oil or lanolin from sheep wool, which then gets subjected to ultraviolet.
If you are wondering which one to opt for, taking Vitamin D2 supplements is a great option as your body generates Vitamin D3 naturally from the sun, whereas our body can’t make Vitamin D2 on its own.
But since Vitamin D3 is recommended more often and easier available in stores, taking Vitamin D3 supplements is probably the better option.
Plus, by taking Vitamin D3 supplements you will add more nutrients to your body.
Vitamin D Powder
If you are struggling with swallowing pills, you can consider using a Vitamin D Powder instead. The powder can be easily added to food, smoothies and juice drinks that include fat, because the body needs fat to absorb Vitamin D.
You should consider these tips before you start taking Vitamin D supplements.
- Always check the dosage recommendations for your medical needs.
- Buy Vitamin D3 instead of Vitamin D2 supplementsas this is the more useful form for your body.
- Your daily Vitamin D intake can go up to 10.000 IU per day.
- You can take Vitamin D in any form you like and will still get the same results.
- Although side effects are rare, be sure to talk to your doctor, especially if you have certain health conditions.
How To Avoid Side Effects
Even though taking Vitamin D supplements has no serious side effects, taking high amounts can have an impact on your nutritional balance. This can occur if you are low on Vitamin K and can lead to a declining bone health and calcification.
You can avoid this by raising your intake of Magnesium, Vitamin A and Vitamin K. When supplementing with high doses of Vitamin D, always supplement with Vitamin A, K and magnesium.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment in the comment section below and I will be more than happy to help you out!
Founder of The Hairy Solution