Much has been made of the abilities of Inositol. Credited with helping everything from panic attacks to PCOS it is suggested it might have an even more exciting future. We ask, can Inositol help with hair loss.
Inositol – Arriving With A Bang
Inositol is a type of blood sugar that is mostly produced in the kidneys. All of us are producing it at the rate of around 2g a day. It performs a few important jobs, responding to hormones, growth factors, and neurotransmitters. This is all familiar ground to us in the hair loss world. JAK inhibitors, one of the great hopes of the hair loss industry currently making its way through trials, work on the same signal system. So it is entirely reasonable that we ask, can Isotinol help with hair loss?
Its first use outside of the human body came in the 1930’s. Professor Edward Barlow demonstrated a method for extracting large amounts of Inositol from the phytic acid in waste corn. He proposed using it in its nitrate form as a more stable alternative to nitroglycerin. To this day it can still be found in modern explosives, where it is used to gelatinise nitrocellulose for use in bombs and rocket propellant.
Applications For Inositol
As a medical treatment, Inositol has already found a couple of important uses. It is considered safe and effective for polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). It works by increasing insulin sensitivity which, in turn, can improve ovarian function. It seems to work for around 70% of patients treated… a remarkably high proportion, and with a high safety rating. They have not given up on the other 30% either and work is being done to investigate why the treatment is failing them.
It has also been found to be effective for preterm babies at risk of infant respiratory distress syndrome (RDS).
Can Inositol Help With Hair Loss?
The evidence from the results of treating PCOS patients has led some to think so. Its ability to reduce testosterone levels and balance hormone levels do suggest there might be something there. But that remains a long way from being a treatment. As this point, there has been simply no research done to investigate. In any sort of trial, the efficacy could be confirmed or refuted. If successful, more work would need to be done to identify optimal dosage and frequency. Then a full-blown double-blind trial with lots of real people to prove to the FDA it deserves its place on the market.
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People are taking supplements to boost their own 2g a day production rate. They are taking them for a variety of reasons, no doubt due to some of the hyperbole written around Inositol. It doesn’t help that it is found in its highest concentrations in the brain. So some might take the view that if it does not help them grow hair it might make them smarter.
You can boost your intake of Inositol by adding more nuts grains and fruits to your diet. Be warned that many of the foods high in Inositol are also packed with Phytates. Which can reduce your ability to absorb iron and other important minerals… important to processes including hair growth.
If you are going to try supplements then there is a list of side effects associated with taking Inositol in significant quantities, measured at 12g or more. They include nausea, gas, insomnia, dizziness, and headaches.
For us, for now, the jury remains out and the evidence seems very thin. Its benefits to PCOS sufferers and pre term infants are wonderful. It is also being examined for its ability to help people with panic attacks, and in large doses for people with depression. This important work is in its early stages and no results have been published yet. To learn more about its uses visit the WebMD page on Inositol here.
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