There is little direct link between drinking moderate amounts of alcohol and hair loss. However, very heavy drinking can lead to a number of vitamin deficiencies that can lead to hair loss. This can happen for two reasons:
- Heavy drinking often tends to go hand in hand with a poor diet. When you’re not eating enough micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) your hair follicles can slow or even stop growing new hair.
- Alcohol can interfere with the body’s ability to absorb, store and metabolise certain nutrients that are critical for hair growth. In particular, heavy drinking can lead to deficiencies of iron, zinc and copper.
Liver Problems and hair loss –
People who chronically abuse alcohol are at high risk to develop liver disease. Liver damage can result in poor digestion and a reduced ability to absorb nutrients in food. Without these vital nutrients, hair growth suffers and as a result, hair can thin and fall out.
Dehydration and Hair Loss -
However, you don’t have to be a heavy drinker for alcohol to have some kind of effect on your hair. Alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it affects the way your body absorbs water.
Thus, drinking alcohol can lead to dehydration. Water is essential for delivering nutrients throughout the body, including to your hair follicles. Without enough water in your system, your hair can suffer. Chronic dehydration can lead to dry, brittle hair that breaks off easily. While drinking water won’t help to grow hair directly, it will help reduce hair loss and breakage caused by dehydration.
Will the hair loss from alcohol be permanent?
Hair thinning and hair loss from heavy alcohol consumption should be temporary. If you have noticed your hair is getting dry, brittle and thin due to excessive drinking, we recommend assessing your daily intake and altering it, sticking with the guidelines of the recommended units. Your hair should get back to its normal healthy state within a couple of months.
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