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Which Vitamin Deficiency Causes Hair Loss? Detect and Prevent

If we look at which vitamin deficiency causes hair loss, we see that mainly vitamin D, vitamin B12, biotin, folic acid, and niacin (vitamin b3) deficiencies cause it. These nutrients improve hair growth and keep the scalp and hair healthy. For that reason, vitamin deficiency hair loss can be seen if the body lacks these vitamins. 

Having a vitamin deficiency is a very common issue. All around the world, over 2 billion people have at least one vitamin or mineral deficiency. Since it is a common issue, if you have a hair fall problem, you may be experiencing nutrient deficiency hair loss.

Some of the key points from the article:

  • HAIR LOSS AND VITAMIN DEFICIENCY CAN BE RELATED.
  • VITAMIN D AND CERTAIN OTHER VITAMIN DEFICIENCIES CAN CAUSE HAIR LOSS.
  • IT IS USUALLY TEMPORARY. 
  • LACK OF MAGNESIUM AND CERTAIN OTHER MINERALS CAN CAUSE HAIR FALL. 
  • WOMEN, CHILDREN, AND VEGANS ARE MORE LIKELY TO EXPERIENCE VITAMIN DEFICIENCY.
  • IT CAN BE FIXED WITH DIETARY INTAKE OR SUPPLEMENTS.
  • OVERSUPPLEMENTING CAN CAUSE HEALTH PROBLEMS OR HAIR LOSS. 
  • YOU CAN GET A VITAMIN DEFICIENCY TEST TO CHECK YOUR VITAMIN LEVELS.

What Vitamin Deficiency Causes Hair Loss?

There are countless vitamins that cause hair loss in case of a deficiency. Some of the well-known vitamin deficiencies that may lead to hair fall:

  • VITAMIN D
  • B12
  • BIOTIN
  • FOLIC ACID
  • NIACIN
  • BIOTIN


To understand which deficiency causes your hair loss, you need to go to a doctor and get your vitamin levels checked.

Now that we know which vitamin deficiency causes hair loss, let’s dive further into details starting with vitamin D.

Vitamin D Deficiency Hair Loss

Vitamin D is an important component of the hair follicle cycle, and its deficiency may lead to hair loss. Hair follicles have vitamin D receptors, and vitamin D helps to maintain hair growth by binding to these receptors.

Studies show that vitamin D deficiency is a common condition among alopecia areata, androgenetic alopecia, and telogen effluvium patients.  

In a study conducted in 2016 that analyzed vitamin D levels in female pattern hair loss, it was seen that female androgenetic alopecia patients had lower vitamin D levels than patients who don’t have the condition. 

Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency hair loss may include diffuse hair thinning and loss, or patchy hair loss. 

B12 Deficiency Hair Loss

Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause hair loss because its deficiency can lead to a decrease in red blood cells. Hair follicles maintain their lives if they get the necessary oxygen and essential nutrients from the blood.

B12 is one of the core elements in the production of red blood cells, that’s why B12 deficiency hair loss can happen.

Folic Acid Deficiency Hair Loss

Folic acid deficiency may cause hair loss because it plays an essential role in cell improvement.

In terms of folic acid deficiency hair loss, hair can have a hard time keeping itself healthy. The maintenance and further growth of the hair becomes disrupted and causes hair to fall.

Niacin Deficiency Hair Loss

Niacin is important for hair follicle function, blood circulation, and reducing inflammation on the scalp. Its deficiency can lead to disruptions in the hair cycle, the follicles may not get the required blood, and inflammation can be seen. 

Niacin deficiency can cause a rare condition called pellagra (a nutritional disease), which can lead to niacin deficiency hair loss.

In terms of pellagra, niacin deficiency alters the functioning of the cells and they cannot work properly. This alteration in cell function can also affect hair, interfere with the hair cycle, and cause hair loss.

Biotin Deficiency Hair Loss

Biotin (vitamin B7) deficiency can lead to hair loss, but it is a rare condition. Vitamin B7 helps to improve hair health by assisting protein synthesis.

A small amount of biotin is produced by the body. With the help of a healthy diet, a person can get enough amount of Biotin.

Surprisingly, while biotin deficiency hair loss is proven, its supplementation in preventing hair loss is a debatable subject. The supplementation may help to improve hair health in deficient patients, but not enough studies show its benefit on non-deficient people.

Is Hair Loss Permanent After Deficiency?

Hair loss after deficiency is usually not permanent. Hair loss usually stops when the deficiency no longer exists.

Since a vitamin deficiency itself is not permanent and a treatable condition, it is possible to stop what appears as a result of the deficiency.

Why Are Vitamins Essential For Hair Health?

Hair cells need vitamins to function properly. As humans need to eat to stay alive, hair follicles need to get the necessary vitamins to survive and produce healthy hair. For that reason, vitamin deficiency causes a disruption in hair follicle function and may cause hair fall.

What Causes Vitamin Deficiency?

There may be 3 main causes of vitamin deficiency, which are:

  • MALNUTRITION
  • STRICT DIETS
  • MALABSORPTION (THE BODY CAN’T ABSORB VITAMINS PROPERLY)

Who Is More Likely to Face Vitamin Deficiency?

Women and vegans are more likely to face a vitamin deficiency. People who are on strict diets and lose excessive amounts of weight also experience hair loss.

Hormonal imbalances are common in women’s bodies, making them more vulnerable to vitamin deficiency. Also, due to their eating habits without meat, vegans may not get the necessary amount of vitamins.

Strict diets limit the amount of vitamin intake and that leads to hair loss. 

How to Know If You Have a Deficiency

A vitamin deficiency test can show if you have a deficiency. It is an easy blood test. Simply, the nurse takes blood on the arm like a normal blood test or with a finger prick test. The test shows what vitamin is lacking at what level.

Can Too Much Vitamin Intake Cause Hair Loss?

Taking too much vitamin may lead to hypervitaminosis (vitamin toxicity), which can cause a wide range of health conditions such as hair loss, a headache, or liver damage. 

Over-supplementation of certain nutrients such as selenium and vitamin A can alter the hair cycle and can disrupt follicle function, leading to hair loss. Don’t forget to consult your doctor before taking any kind of supplements.

What Mineral Deficiency Causes Hair Loss?

There are certain minerals that may cause hair loss in terms of a deficiency. Some of them are:

  • Magnesium: It keeps hair follicles healthy, promotes blood flow, and helps with protein synthesis.
  • Iron: Promotes blood circulation on the scalp.
  • Calcium: It can regulate hormones and it is important for hair follicle development.
  • Zinc: Improves the hair cycle and plays a role in hormone regulation.
  • Potassium: A low potassium to high sodium ratio on follicles can make follicles hard to get necessary nutrients.
  • Selenium: Plays an important role in protein synthesis.

Can Nutritional Deficiency Cause Hair Loss?

Yes, nutritional deficiency and hair loss are related. Some of the common nutritional deficiencies that cause hair loss:

  • Protein: Hair is made of protein, especially keratin (a type of protein).
  • Collagen: A kind of protein, that also plays a role in the production of keratin.
  • Omega-3: Provides many nutrients to hair and reduces inflammation in the scalp.

How to Regrow Mineral and Vitamin Deficiency Hair Loss

Nutrient deficiency hair loss can be treated by:

  • DIETARY INTAKE
  • TAKING ORAL VITAMIN SUPPLEMENTS
  • GETTING INJECTABLE VITAMIN SUPPLEMENTS


A healthy diet that focuses on the deficient nutrient can help to stop hair loss or this nutrient can be taken by supplements. 

There are two types of vitamin supplements, oral and injectable. Both of them treat the deficiency, but injectable ones are more effective since they are taken through the veins directly. While oral vitamins can be found over the counter, injectable vitamins require a prescription.

Oral supplements can be taken daily, but some vitamin D capsules are taken twice a week. Injectable ones’ intake times change depending on the vitamins. For example, it can be once a week or once a month.

How to Arrange the Perfect Diet to Treat Nutrient Deficiencies: Macros and Micros

In order to prevent nutrient deficiency hair loss, you should have a balanced diet both in macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals). You need to learn how much protein and other macro and micronutrients you should take based on your height and weight.

Since you know which vitamin deficiency causes hair loss, you can add foods that are rich in these vitamins to your diet. 

⚠️ We highly suggest you consult an endocrinologist and a dietitian for the best diet for you. They will require a blood test to see your deficiencies.

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