Many women find that their hair gets drier, thinner, and more brittle during perimenopause and menopause. Unfortunately, the hair may also start to fall out. Although various causes for hair loss exist, both thyroid and sex hormones play a role.
As your body begins to produce less estrogen, the hair growth cycle is reduced and results in thinner hair. At the same time, male hormones and their metabolites may become more prominent and encourage hair to thin and fall out. Thus, some women experience androgenic hair loss; hair loss due to high levels of androgenic hormones (testosterone and DHEA).
Hair loss can be extremely distressing, especially if you previously received a lot of compliments on the look of your hair. Many women turn towards natural alternatives as opposed to hormone therapy to tackle menopause related hair loss. Hormone therapy can potentially make hair loss worse and plant based options are a popular choice for addressing the underlying factors and restoring hair health.
Supplements that may aid in balancing estrogen contain natural plant estrogens, called phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens can support healthy hair during menopause as they mimic the effects of estrogen, which can relieve many of the symptoms of menopause.
Phytoestrogens can be found in the foods we consume. Some foods rich in phytoestrogens include soy, tempeh, strawberries, and alfalfa sprouts. Eating meals rich in phytoestrogens could potentially help relieve some menopausal symptoms like thinning hair. Try out some free recipes we have provided to boost your phytoestrogen consumption to fight hair loss.
Some herbs, including sage, can also balance hormones and reduce potential for hair loss.
Collagen is one of the main building blocks in the body. It is heavily involved in cartilage but is also very important for hair growth. A collagen deficiency can affect the hair and is likely to result in hair that is dry and brittle. As we get older, collagen production naturally decreases and can be worsened by lifestyle factors.
Collagen supplements can support thicker and stronger hair during menopause. Studies have found that supplementing with collagen can promote thicker hair in women experiencing hair thinning * Collagen also helps to balance hormones that contribute to hair loss.
Biotin (also known as vitamin B7) is strongly linked to healthy hair and a deficiency can result in hair loss .*
In one study, women with thinning hair were given a supplement containing biotin twice daily for 90 days. At the start and end of the study, digital images were taken of their scalps and hair shedding was assessed after hair was washed. The supplement group experienced better hair growth compared to the placebo group and also experienced less shedding *.
Silicon is another important nutrient that supports collagen production . It can be found in grains, certain vegetables, and seafood. Silicon intake decreases as we get older and many women choose to take supplements containing silicon during menopause.
Choline-stabilized orthosilicic acid is a bioavailable form of silicon that can support the body’s silicon and collagen production * and is included in some hair loss supplements for menopausal women.