Hair fall and hair thinning are the most common problem faced by both men and women today. There could be many reasons for hair loss. But, can low testosterone cause hair loss?
Testosterone is a hormone produced in men by the testicles. Testosterone plays an important role in the development of male reproductive tissues such as the prostate and testes. It is the major male sex hormone that balances fertility, fat distribution, muscle mass, and red blood cell production. When the testosterone level drops below average, it causes conditions like hypogonadism and infertility. Let’s see the reason and treatment for hair loss due to testosterone.
Different Types of Testosterone
98 per cent of the testosterone in the body is bound to albumin or globulin(SHBG) hormones. The remaining 2 per cent is known as free testosterone. This free testosterone does not bound to the proteins in our body.
DHT is androgens or hormones that are made by an enzyme called 5-alpha reductase. Almost 10 per cent of the testosterone gets converted to DHT daily. This type of testosterone helps grow male sex characteristics like deep voice, sperm production, hair growth on the body, and testicle growth when you go through puberty. This testosterone is also responsible for overall muscle mass, fertility, and sexual health.
Does Low Testosterone Cause Baldness?
Hair on your body grows out of an organ called follicles. Hair follicles is a tiny hole in your skin and head that contains a single strand of hair. The hair in the follicles goes through a growth cycle of two to six years. They reach a resting phase at the end of each cycle, then fall out, and the cycle repeats.
Both high or low testosterone can cause hair loss and baldness. Although DHT is the main hair hormones in the human body. But the low testosterone levels in your body can cause hair loss even if you have an average level of DHT. A high or low level of testosterone reduces the size of your hair follicles, resulting in thinning of hair in both men and women. As the size of follicles reduces, the hair becomes thinner with each cycle which results in baldness.
An abnormal level of testosterone can cause androgenetic alopecia in both men and women in a different form. The hair loss occurs in a specific format which leads to balding in the long run.
Male Pattern Baldness
The hair fall starts occurring in the front hairline for men, continuing in the crown area resulting in baldness.
Female Pattern Baldness
The hair loss mainly occurs in the partition line for females and may or may not result in complete balding.
DHEA and Hair Loss
DHEA is the short form of Dehydroepiandrosterone which is a mild male hormone produced in your body. Your body makes the most crucial male hormone from DHEA.
DHEA level is not directly connected to hair loss but comes into the picture when it produces a high or low testosterone level in your body.
Testosterone and Hair Growth
Fluctuating levels of testosterone can cause hair loss. But does testosterone make you grow hair? Testosterones are not responsible for your scalp hair growth, but DHT is a very important hormone for hair growth in other parts of your body. Particularly for men, you need DHT to develop a beard, chest hair, and hair on other parts of your body. A lower level of this hormone results in less beard growth or skin hair. Men with a higher level of DHT are likely to have more facial hair than men with lower levels.
Treatment for Hair Loss Due to Testosterone
Testosterone hair loss can be treated with the help of DHT blockers. DHT blockers will help in restoring the natural level of DHT hormone in your body. Few of the DHT blockers are:
1. Saw Palmetto
Saw palmetto is an anti-androgen herb. It helps lower the DHT levels in your body by blocking the 5 alpha enzyme from converting testosterone into DHT.
2. Pumpkin Seed Oil
Pumpkin seed helps reduce hair fall by blocking the hormones and enzymes in the scalp, which causes hair loss.
3. Peppermint oil
Peppermint oil can help in clearing the blocks in hair follicles. This helps increase the number of hair follicles and the depth of hair follicles which will promote regrowth of your hair.
Minoxidil is a medication used for the treatment of pattern hair loss in both men and women. It also comes in a solution form which helps in increasing the blood flow to hair follicles when applied.
Finasteride is an oral DHT blocker medicine that helps in reducing hair loss and regrowth of hair. This medicine is also used in the treatment of excessive hair growth in women.
Top 5 Natural Ways to Boost Your Testosterone?
You can boost your testosterone levels naturally by following these steps.
Take Care of Your Diet
The food that we eat impacts our hormones positively or negatively. Zinc, vitamin D, and fats are extremely beneficial in increasing testosterone level naturally.
The food that is rich in zinc are spinach, garlic, egg, kidney beans, flax seeds, peanuts, etc.,
The best natural source for vitamin D is sunlight. You can sit in sunlight for 15 to 20 minutes daily to get yourself plenty of vitamin D. Also, mushrooms, milk, tuna, salmon, and eggs are a rich source of vitamin D.
It is recommended not to eat more than 20 grams of saturated fats in a day. Egg yolk, paneer, coconut, chicken is the best source of saturated fats.
Related: Ketogenic Diet Long Term Effects
Hit the Weights
Exercise plays a significant role in the production of testosterone. All forms of exercise increase testosterone production, but the right form of weight lifting is more effective when even done 3 to 4 times a week. Studies have shown that the higher the intensity of the workout, the greater the production of testosterone.
Get Enough Sleep
Restful and high-quality sleep is vital in the production of testosterone in your body. According to the study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), the men who slept only for five hours tend to have their testosterone level decreased by 10 to 15 per cent. It is recommended that you get around 7 to 8 hours of sleep every day.
Cut Out the Stress
Stress plays a significant role in the level of testosterone. When you stress out, your body produces a hormone called cortisol. The increasing level of cortisol will decrease testosterone levels in your body. Working out, meditation, and good sleep are the best ways to reduce stress.
If you are overweight, reducing few kilos can help you in increasing your testosterone level. Studies have shown that overweight men are more likely to have low testosterone levels.
Hair loss is one of the biggest problems faced by both men and women. Hair fall is one of the symptoms of low testosterone in your body. But hair fall doesn’t always mean that you have low testosterone. If you have low testosterone, you may also experience fatigue, increased body mass, loss of muscle mass, low sex drive, poor memory.