Q&A with Bill Harris, M.D.
Q. Hi, I am a vegetarian of 7 years. I am 23 yr old woman and my hair is falling out. Is this a vitamin deficiency or something like that? I take a daily multi-vitamin supplement. Its starting to be very stressful. Please help me.
A. Check your vitamin supplement for "vitamin A". If the label says retinol palmitate be aware that it is an essential metabolite, not really a vitamin and it has been been linked to hair loss. Beta carotene is the true vitamin A and it's non toxic and plentiful in pigmented plant foods. Nature's Life Vegetarian Super Mega Vite is the only supplement I can recommend from experience. Its "vitamin A" is beta carotene. Zinc deficiency has also been linked to hair loss and since zinc is a limiting nutrient on a veg*n diet a 15-30 mg zinc supplement might be worth a try.
Below is an good article on hair metabolism. I hope it will be of some use to you. Notice that crash dieting and weight loss is a common cause of hair loss.
-William Harris, M.D.