There are two vitamins that you have to make sure you have plenty of every day, if you want to minimize your hair loss. These nutrients are Vitamin A and the B vitamins. To digest and absorb these nutrients you cannot use antacids.
Vitamin A is a key component to developing healthy cells, tissues in the body, and reducing hair loss. Additionally it works with silica and zinc to prevent drying and clogging of the sebaceous glands, the glands vital to producing sebum. Sebum is an important lubricant for the hair follicle.
Vitamin A deficiencies commonly cause thickening of the scalp, dry hair, and dandruff. Air pollution, smoking, extremely bright light, certain cholesterol-lowering drugs, laxatives, and aspirin are some known vitamin A inhibitors. Liver, fish oil, eggs, fortified milk, and red, yellow, and orange vegetables are good sources for vitamin A, as are some dark green leafy vegetables like spinach.
Be particularly careful if you take vitamin A supplements, as vitamin A is fat-soluble, allowing the body to store it and making it easy for the body to overdose on vitamin A. Vitamin A overdoses can cause excessively dry skin and inflamed hair follicles, and in some cases ironically can cause hair loss.
A safe dose of vitamin A is 10,000 IU or 25,000 IU. Most Vitamin supplements are sold in these quantities. Also take all supplements during meals unless you are working with a Nutritionist that recommends otherwise.
B-vitamins work interdependently and therefore all levels of B vitamins need to be sufficient in order to maintain proper health. Vitamins B-6, folic acid, biotin, and vitamin B-12 are all key components in maintaining healthy hemoglobin levels in the blood, which is the iron-containing portion of red-blood cells.
Hemoglobin’s primary function is to carry oxygen from the lungs to the tissues of the body, so if these vitamins were deficient in your body, then hair and skin would suffer. Fortunately some of the tastiest foods contain these vitamins. Vitamin B-6 is found in protein rich foods, which is excellent because the body needs a sufficient amount of protein to maintain hair growth. Liver, chicken, fish, pork, kidney, and soybeans are good sources of B-6 and are relatively low in fat when they are not fried.
Folic acid is found in whole grains, cereals, nuts, green leafy vegetables, orange juice, brewer’s yeast, wheat germ, and liver again. Meat, fish, poultry, eggs, and other dairy products meanwhile provide healthy amounts of B-12.
Biotin deficiencies are rare unless there is a severe case of malnutrition or a serious intestinal disorder, since a healthy gut produces biotin through good bacteria found there.
There is one more important fact in making sure you are absorbing the B-vitamins. If you have heartburn, acid reflux, or GERD and are taking any antacids or drugs to reduce your stomach acid, you will reduce your ability to digest and absorb B-vitamins. Antacids make your stomach acid more alkaline, which does not support the digestion and adsorption of the B-vitamins.
If you are taking over the counter antacids, you decrease your ability to use the B-vitamins that you eat or take as supplements.