Like the rest of our body, hair also relies on adequate amounts of nutrients for maintaining their health and growth. And these nutrients reach the hair follicles from a healthy and well balanced diet. Whenever there is a discussion about necessary vitamins about hair growth, it is impossible to ignore the benefits of Folic acid, or vitamin B-9.
Folic acid is a water-soluble B vitamin which is very important for healthy hair growth. However, folic acid does not promote new hair growth on its own; its benefits can be enjoyed along with the other forms of B vitamins to encourage health hair growth. A deficiency of this vitamin can lead to change in hair color. Apart from helping in hair growth, folic acid also helps in the formation of red blood cells, maintaining the central nervous system, and for the overall normal growth and development of human body.
Why Folic Acid is important for hair growth?
This B complex vitamin promotes hair growth. It plays a key run in turning the food we eat into energy and aids it in processing and using these nutrients. When nutrients reach our hair, it enjoys proper growth, extra glow and shine. Also the problem of hair fall can be solved. Another role of folic acid is that it helps in cell division, including the cells found in our hair follicles. Since hair growth depends on regular cell regeneration in the follicle, a steady supply of folic acid encourages healthy hair growth. Any kind of hair problem caused due to deficiency in folic acid can be corrected by eating more and more foods enriched with folic acid.
Cures premature hair graying:
It has been found that a deficiency of folic acid often causes premature hair graying. During this time red blood cells grow larger than normal, causing a condition known as megaloblastic anemia. With folic acid the formation of red blood cells will return to normal. So, when you notice premature hair graying, make sure your body is getting the required amount of folic acid.
Promotes healthy hair growth:
Folic acid helps to metabolize carbohydrates, fats and protein that are available in your body. So, when our body is getting the required folic acid on daily basis it helps in reducing symptoms of various hair disorders, including alopecia, male pattern baldness, hair shaft disorders and hirsutism, or excessive hair in the body of women where hair does not usually grow.
What happens with folic acid deficiency?
Folic acid is an important vitamin that our body needs for various functions. A deficiency of folic acid in the body can cause hair loss and even premature graying of hair. Also girls and women of childbearing age can protect and promote their reproductive health by taking adequate supply of folic acid as required by the body.
Too much folic acid can be harmful:
It is important to keep a track on how much folic acid you are taking as both less and more than the required amount can be harmful. When you take folic acid more than the required amount it may affect the absorption capacity of the antibiotic tetracycline, reducing its effectiveness. Excess amount of folic acid may also cause hair fall and other health related problems.
This vitamin can be taken as a supplement or naturally by including the various foods enriched with folic acid. Food products such as green, leafy vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts and cereal products are good source of folic acid. But if you wish to take any supplement it is advisable to consult your doctor before taking one.
Recommended Dose of Folic Acid:
The recommended daily allowance of folic acid for adults over the age of 19 is 400 micrograms daily. It should be not more than 1,000 micrograms per day for both men and women. Those who are pregnant, planning to conceive, or lactating should include 600 to 800 micrograms of folic acid in their diet daily.
Major Sources of Folic Acid:
There are many regular food items that are rich in folic acid. Some of such food items are cooked dried beans, peas, lentils, spinach, asparagus, romaine lettuce, beets, broccoli, corn, peas, tomato juice, vegetable juice cocktail, Brussels sprouts, orange juice, canned pineapple juice, cantaloupe, melon, hemp, soybean, honeydew, potato, canned grapefruit juice, bananas, raspberries, lean meat, grapefruit, strawberries, whole wheat flour, coffee beans, enriched grain pasta, whole grain breads, whole grain bread, peanut butter, sunflower seeds, milk, soya items and nut products especially walnuts. Including these food itmes in your diet will surely make your hair grow faster.
Folic Acid Supplements:
Taking folic acid supplements is definitely a good idea for proper hair growth. Rare allergic reactions to folic acid have been observed that include skin rashes, itching and difficulty breathing. So, it is always better to consult a physician before taking any new vitamin supplement including folic acid.
To conclude, it is true that folic acid helps in hair growth. But for hair growth, correct amount of folic acid must be consumed regularly otherwise it can have negative impacts. Along with folic acid one must also follows other important tips such as healthy diet, regular exercise, adequate sleep, less use of chemicals on hair, keeping the scalp clean, regular oil massaging and so on to make their hair grow faster.