The following article simply reiterates what we’ve been saying for years about Soy’s beneficial effects on male and female pattern hair loss. As mentioned in previous updates, Soy Isoflavone concentrates will likely have a significantly more pronounced effect than dietary Soy.
It would also appear that these positive effects on hair growth are not dependent upon one being genetically able to metabolize Soy to the anti-androgen Equol. However to help facilitate this conversion and further enhance the hair growth effects of Soy it would be prudent to consume 5-10 cups a day of Green Tea or better yet utilize a potent Green Tea Extract with a high dose of epigallocatechin gallate, (EGCG).
To briefly summarize, Soy and Green Tea consumption are associated with a reduced incidence of androgenetic hair loss, obesity, and many forms of cancer, including prostate and breast. Studies have shown that dietary Soy reduces serum DHT and in certain individuals can additionally metabolize to Equol, a naturally occurring anti-androgen that several researchers have posited would be a side effect free equivalent to the dual 5AR inhibitor, dutasteride.
Keep in mind that there are multiple hormonal facets to hair loss (not to mention inflammatory facets) in addition to DHT. These include Androstendione, Prolactin, and in middle aged and older men, a higher ratio of systemic estrogen to testosterone as well.
SOYBEAN AND BALDNESS PREVENTION: APPARENTLY, THERE IS A LINK – 2007By Blanche Lo
Nutritionists and vegetarians have claimed for years that soy provides a wide range of health benefits, such as lowering rates of heart attack, reducing blood cholesterol levels, relieving menopausal symptoms in postmenopausal women, and in the general enhancement of the immune system. In fact, in 1999, the Food and Drug Administration even permitted food manufacturers to put label on products with high soy protein contents, with the indication that the corresponding food product may be able to reduce heart disease risks (Henkel 2000). Consequently, ever since these claims were announced, attention and examination of the impact of soy on human health has been risen rapidly, as scientists and the public health community became more focused on the chemical components of soy (for instance, the soy isoflavone genistein and daidzein). Soybeans also contain a complete protein profile, which means that they provide all the essential amino acids that cannot be synthesized by the human body. Hence, soy protein products can be used to replace animal-based products, which are generally associated with unhealthy substances, such as saturated fats (Henkel 2000).
However, in addition to these well-known benefits, some previous publications reveal that soy extracts can even enhance cosmetic attributes. This includes healthier-looking skin and nails (Revival 1998, Kim et al. 2004) as well as the reduction of hair loss, in particular, male and female pattern baldness (Adams 2004). Therefore, this paper will intend to look more closely at this hair loss claim.
According to some conservative estimates, 60 million Americans are affected by hair loss, in which two-thirds are males (Hair Transplant Center, Inc.). Also, men above the age of 50 have a 50% chance to experience some type of hair loss, and such process can often start as early as the age of 20 (Bauman 2003). Typical male pattern baldness begins as a recession of the hairline with thinning at the top of the head; as the process progresses, the so-called “monk’s ring” of hair will result (Bauman 2003).
For females, the first sign of hair loss usually begins in their late 40’s to 50’s (Bauman 2003). In general, their pattern of baldness does not involve a receding hairline; rather, some women may experience thinning only on the top of the head, while others may have hair that thins out over broader regions or possibly even the entire scalp (Bauman 2003)
Before looking more closely at what contributes to hair senescence, it is important to recognize what does not cause hair loss. There are many misconceptions that the general public has about hair loss, including: poor scalp circulation; microscopic scalp mites; poor choices of shampoo and other hair-care products; and/or wearing hats or helmets. Indeed, in all of these cases, such considerations will only affect the quality, manageability, or potential breakage of hair (Bauman 2003). Real causes of male and female pattern baldness involve medications, diseases, poor nutrition, hormonal changes, stress, and genetics.
I doubt anyone else is telling you that mustard is a potential hair growth promoter. It may sound a little crazy, until you look at the science behind it. Because turmeric, the pigment that gives mustard its bright yellow color, is the most effective TGF-ß inhibitor known. Can mustard cure hair loss?
Among these causes, genetics appears to be at the forefront, and in fact, accounts for 95% of hair loss cases (Yap 2005). This implies that it is the inherited DNA from either of the parents that will determine hair loss in the individual. And this inheritance of common baldness appears to be related to the actions of androgens, such as the male circulating hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT) (Kuster and Happle 1984). Here, this genetic disease is often known as “androgenic alopecia” (Kuster and Happle 1984) – essentially, when a diseased individual ages, his/her hair follicles on the scalp begin to miniaturize and the follicles will continue to shrink until they no longer produce hair (Yap 2005). Although the exact mechanisms are still unclear, DHT is has been shown to influence the hair growth cycle, which usually consists of hair expansion, falling out, and new expansion. Studies have shown that as the level of DHT increases, the expansion phase shortens, and the rate of hair senescence will elevate (Yap 2005). Eventually, the ability of follicles to produce hair will cease, and microscopic scarring will result (Bauman 2003).
Hair transplant, and medications such as Provillus, are some of the current treatments for hair loss, although often not without significant side effects. Alternative solutions can be focused on changing lifestyle or adopting an appropriate diet habit. This includes the potential use of soybean in ones diet.
In essence, soy proteins have been indicated to play a role in hair growth in many previous studies. Soy contains isoflavones, which belong to a class phytoestrogens known as flavonoids (Lund et al. 2004). Phytoestrogens are essentially plant compounds capable of acting like estrogen. Among all the isoflavones, genistein and daidzein carry the most estrogenic properties and functions (Lund et al. 2004). Although soy products are not composed of high levels of genistein and daidzein, they do have high amounts of their precursor forms (genistin and daidzin respectively) (Lund et al. 2004). After the conversion, daidzein is further metabolized in the intestine to equol (Lund et al. 2004). Equol acts as an anti-androgen, but does so in a very specific and unique manner. It does not actually bind the androgen receptor (AR), but rather binds DHT with high affinity, which prevents the latter from binding the AR (Lund et al. 2004). Thus, the biological activity and physiological process of DHT can be modified.
Moreover, it has been shown that in the soy extract, the isoflavone genistein can stimulate the production of hyaluronic acid (HA) in the epidermis and dermis (Miyazaki 2003). HA is a carbohydrate, and occurs naturally in the human body (Hyalogic 2001). When not binding with other molecules, HA binds with water readily, which contributes to its viscous gel property. HA has been found in many movable parts of the body, and acts as a lubricant (Hyalogic 2001). Since HA is one of the most hydrophilic molecules in nature, it is often referred to as “nature’s moisturizer” (Hyalogic 2001), which is why it is applied in many skin-care products (Hylogic 2001).
HA is present abundantly in the scalp tissue, and its function is (by holding water) to form a gelatinous fluid in tandem with the connective tissue in the dermal layer. This results in providing support, nourishment, and hydration to the deep layers of scalp, which in turn facilitates the good health of the hair follicles locating in the dermal layer (Miyazaki et al. 2002). In fact, HA powder has been shown to facilitate the turnover and regeneration of hair follicle keratinocytes (Annely 2006), and to enhance hair colour restoration (HSite 2002). Furthermore, HA forms a gel-like shield directly on the hair follicles (HSite 2002 which can protect them from the harmful effects of DHT (HSite 2002).
Finally, soy extracts have also been shown to reduce another disease-causing baldness, called alopecia areata (AA) (McElwee et al. 2003). AA is an autoimmune disease, manifest of focal inflammation in hair follicles that ultimately leads to hair loss (Asaleh et al. 1995). AA is also genetic in nature, as many studies have been reported where monozygotic twins show similar onset and hair loss patterns of AA (Scerri and Pace 1992), as well as multiple generations within the same family being affected by the affliction (Van der Steen et al. 1992). Research has shown that the intake of soy oil content modifies the susceptibility of AA. The data showed that mice being fed soy oil developed a resistance to AA induction by skin grafting in a dose-dependent manner (McElwee et al. 2003). Further studies reveal that the injection of isoflavone genistein into mice reduced the occurence of AA (McElwee et al. 2003). Based on this data, the researchers proposed that since genistein is a tyrosine protein kinase inhibitor (tyrosine phosphorylation is an importance part of the immune response) and has been shown to suppress inflammatory cells in many tissues, the presence of the protein inhibits autoimmunity and inflammation in the affected areas (McElwee et al. 2003).
Taken together, soy seems to be a putative treatment to prevent hair loss, and is less expensive while arguably much safer and healthier than prescription drugs and surgery. However, despite being aware of all the health benefits from consuming soy products, the majority of North Americans and Western Europeans detain to include soy foods as one of their dietary staples. Even so, soy products are inadvertently being consumed in a large variety of food products in supermarkets. For instance, 79% of the edible fats are composed of soybean oil (Henkel 2000). Also, many brands of commercial mayonnaises, margarines or salad dressings have soybean oil (Henkel 2000). Although taking soy contents may not stop hair loss outright, having this food source in diets is always a healthy and nutritional strategy for both men and women.
The following article appeared in a German Publication. Black Cohosh is one of several components of Natural Estrogen with Pomegranate Extract that promote hair growth.
BLACK COHOSH CURES BALDNESS, GERMAN RESEARCHERS CLAIM
A plant historically used by American Indian medicine-men to help menstrual problems can also cure baldness, German researchers said. Black cohosh, scientific name Cimicifuga racemosa, was the first known herbal agent that could stop hormone-related loss of hair in both men and women and even bring a modest thickening of growth, said the team at Ruhr University in Bochum, Western Germany.
The estrogen-like substance has been used for generations by the Indians and is a big-selling herbal remedy in the United States for rheumatism, back pain and women’s menstrual stress.
Black cohosh is native to eastern North America and grows about 3 meters high.
The university said it used a new, kinder testing system on its human guinea pigs, measuring hair growth with digital cameras. Traditional testing involves tearing out hair 100 strands at a time to check how fast it has been growing.
As reported in the Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa) August 27, 2003
** FEATURED TREATMENT COMPOUNDS **
SUPER ABSORBABLE SOY ISOFLAVONES
Soy Isoflavone extracts have been shown to possess mild phytoestrogenic properties which can neutralize androgen mediated pathologies in the body. Several biotech firms have applied for patents for oral soy extracts as a treatment and preventative agents for male and female pattern hair loss.
Soy extract prevents the hair loss effect of testosterone by inhibiting the binding of testosterone to the hair and scalp receptor. Soy extracts also raise systemic levels of sex hormone binding globulin(SHBG), and upregulate VEGF(vascular endothelium growth factor). A recently published study showed that merely consuming soy milk and small amounts of soy protein significantly lowered blood levels of DHT. Oral soy extracts can be combined with other pharmaceutical treatments for hair loss without adversely affecting the beneficial and positive effects of such treatments.
In a recently granted patent for oral soy extract as a treatment for MPB, a dosage of 400 to 450 mg. was recommended. Super Absorbable Soy Isoflavones is the most potent and bioavailable soy extract commercially available. Each capsule provides 135 mg. of highly concentrated isoflavones, including genestein, diadzein, and glyciten, and is combined with Natto, a fermented extract that facilitates absorption.
Dosage and usage:
- For the treatment or prevention of hair loss, 1-2 capsules daily is suggested.
- Serving Size 1 capsule
- Amount Per Serving:
Soybean Powdered extract – 135 mg
Standardized to supply isoflavones – 55.5 mg
Genistein and its precursor isoform genistin – 25.8 mg
Daidzein and its precursor isoform daidzin – 25 mg
Glycitein and its precursor isoform glycitin – 4.7 mg
Soynatto Fermented Soyfood (Organic, Non-GMO)- 435 mg
NATURAL ESTROGEN with POMEGRANATE EXTRACT
Natural Estrogen with Pomegranate is a multi-component phytoestrogen compound that addresses all the currently identified hormonal components of androgen mediated hair loss. It contains a potent dose of Soy Isoflavones. In so doing its effects in men would be more accurately described as “anti-estrogenic”.
It functions to reduce DHT, Androstendione via 17BHSD inhibition/Enterlactone production, Prolactin, and modulates estrogen in such a way to neutralize its role in hair loss and prostate cancer development. It also functions as an androgen receptor antagonist, and provides a potent dose of ellagic acid, an antioxidant that has been shown to stimulate hair growth and provide numerous other health benefits.
Natural Estrogen with Pomegranate Extract also contains Black Cohosh(which mimics the safe estrigen, “estriol”), recently patented as a sole treatment for hair loss in germany.
Dosage and usage:
- Take two caplets in the morning with or without food, or as recommended by your healthcare practitioner.
- Those taking any estrogenic product should include as part of their diet cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, and/or cauliflower.
- Serving Size 2 caplets
- Serving per container 30
- Amount Per Serving:
SoySelect® soybean (Glycine max) 70:1 Extract [standardized to 13% isoflavones
(52 mg), 18% Group-B Saponins (72 mg)] – 400 mg
Broccoli (Brassica oleracea l.) Super Concentrate Extract (plant)
[standardized to 4% glucosinolates (12 mg)]- 300 mg
Pomella® Pomegranate (Punica granatum) Extract (fruit) [standardized
to 30% Punicalagins (60 mg)] – 200 mg
Black cohosh extract (Cimicifuga racemosa) (root and rhizome)
[standardized to 2.5% triterpene glycosides (1 mg)] – 40 mg
HMRlignan™ Norway spruce (Picea abies) lignan extract (knot wood)
[standardized to 90% Hydroxymatairesinol potassium acetate complex] – 30 mg
Dong quai extract (Angelica sinensis) (root) [std. to 1% ligustilide (.25 mg)] – 25 mg
Licorice extract (Glycyrrhiza glabra) (root) – 25 mg
Vitex extract (Vitex agnus-castus) (fruit) [std. to 5% vitexicarpin (1 mg)] – 20 mg
Other ingredients:dicalcium phosphate, microcrystalline cellulose, stearic acid, croscarmellose sodium, silicon dioxide, magnesium stearate, pharmaceutical glaze.
Contains soybeans. Contains corn. This product contains NO milk, egg, fish, peanuts, crustacean shellfish (lobster, crab, shrimp), tree nuts, wheat, yeast, gluten, or rice. Contains NO sugar, and no artificial sweeteners, flavors, colors, or preservatives.
SoySelect® is a registered trademark of Indena S.p.A.
Pomella® is a registered trademark of Geni Herbs.
HMRlignan™ is a trademark used under sublicense from Linnea S.A.