Are Herbal Supplements Effective in Male Pattern Baldness?

Are Herbal Supplements Effective in Male Pattern Baldness

Dr. Weil talks about various herbal supplements and their effectiveness in curing male pattern baldness. Various herbs and supplements like pumpkin seeds, nettle root, zinc and Pygeum africanum are believed to be effective for treating baldness in men. Dr. Andrew Weil sheds light on the studies that have been conducted for testing efficiency of these herbs.

Saw Palmetto also known as Serenoa repens is a small palm tree native to coastal region of southeastern U.S. Dr. Weil recommends consuming berry extracts around 160 mg each day to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), i.e., enlargement of prostate in men above 50 years of age. Few people recommend using saw palmetto gel on their scalps by extracting the gel from the capsules. This provides a modest effect on hair regrowth in men.

Dr. Weil mentions that James A. Duke, Ph.D., a leading author, recommends saw palmetto for promoting hair regrowth as it can prevent testosterone from converting into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is involved in prostate enlargement and is also responsible for destruction of hair follicles eventually leading to male pattern baldness.

Baldness is characterized by excessive hair thinning, patchy bald spots, losing hair from the crown region and too much shedding of hair. There are various types of baldness and they all have associated factors. Hence, it becomes important to visit a doctor for determining the cause of baldness and initiating proper treatment. Dr. Duke also has collected various uncontrolled case studies that indicate the effectiveness of saw palmetto in treating male pattern baldness.


Herbs That Can Prevent Hair Loss in Men

Dr. Weil mentions some below-given herbs that are very effective in treating hair loss in men:

• Licorice or Glycyrrhiza glabra also prevents conversion of testosterone into DHT. It is advised to add licorice in your shampoo.
• Rosemary or Rosmarinus officinalis might improve blood circulation and thereby encourage hair growth. It can be mixed with hair oil and applied on the scalp. Mixing one part of rosemary oil in two parts of almond oil work wonders for hair by boosting hair re-growth.
• Sage (Salvia officinalis) and Danshen (Salvia miltiorrhiza) can prevent hair loss and can restore hair color. Small amounts of sage tincture can be added to the shampoo for maximum benefits.
• Stinging nettle or Urtica dioica can prevent baldness in people experiencing hair thinning.

While, all these herbs might possibly prevent or help hair re-growth in male pattern baldness, there are not enough evidences to support these herbs for effectively treating male pattern baldness.
Other herbs that might be useful in treating male pattern baldness are safflower, horsetail, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, zinc and pygeum (Pygeum africanum).

Dr. Weil does not have enough scientific pieces of evidence to prove that these herbs and supplements work. However, on the limited studies conducted to check their efficiency indicate that these might prove beneficial for hair re-growth in people with male pattern baldness.