Saw Palmetto, as everyone likely knows, has been around since day one, or at least for the last 20 years on the hair loss treatment radar. The general conscencus over the years is that it of little use for treating hair loss , or Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA). We have consistently asserted that this conclusion was short -sighted and erroneous due the established mechanisms of Saw Palmetto with regards to its inhibitory effect on DHT binding, and its stellar track record at treating the symptoms of Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy (BPH).
Saw palmetto, used as an ancient native American medicinal treatment has evolved in Western Medicine over the last 20 years. In its original commercial form, it was used as a lipid sterolic extract, in a dose of 320 mg sold in Europe as a treatment for BPH under the name under the name Permixon. Saw Palmetto has since significantly evolved, and current, state of the art formulas utilize an Indena patented CO2 critical extract which has more potent DHT binding properties than Permixon. Saw Palmetto is now often used as part of multi-component phytosterol , anti-DHT formulas, which include Beta Sitosterol from Pine Trees, which is comparatively more potent than Saw Palmetto in its ability to inhibit DHT binding to receptor sites.
The following study comparing Saw Palmetto with Propecia ( 1 mg finasteride) in its ability to regrow hair in a fairly sizable subject pool. Not surprisingly. both produced hair growth effects, with Propecia being the better of the two. What this study also does is confirm the hair growth effects of Saw Palmetto, which has been a question mark in many minds over the years.
Int Immunopathol Pharmacol. 2012 Oct-Dec;25(4):1167-73.
Comparitive effectiveness of finasteride vs Serenoa repens in male androgenetic alopecia: a two-year study.
Rossi A, Mari E, Scarno M, Garelli V, Maxia C, Scali E, Iorio A, Carlesimo M.
The objective of this open label study is to determine the effectiveness of Serenoa repens in treating male androgenetic alopecia (AGA), by comparing its results with finasteride. For this purpose, we enrolled 100 male patients with clinically diagnosed mild to moderate AGA. One group received Serenoa repens 320 mg every day for 24 months, while the other received finasteride 1 mg every day for the same period. In order to assess the efficacy of the treatments, a score index based on the comparison of the global photos taken at the beginning (T0) and at the end (T24) of the treatment, was used. The results showed that only 38% of patients treated with Serenoa repens had an increase in hair growth, while 68% of those treated with finasteride noted an improvement. Moreover finasteride was more effective for more than half of the patients (33 of 50, i.e. 66%), with level II and III alopecia. We can summarize our results by observing that Serenoa repens could lead to an improvement of androgenetic alopecia, while finasteride confirmed its efficacy. We also clinically observed, that finasteride acts in both the front area and the vertex, while Serenoa repens prevalently in the vertex. Obviously other studies will be necessary to clarify the mechanisms that cause the different responses of these two treatments.
Comment: As significant, hair growth was produced using the weakest form of Saw Palmetto, the 320 mg dose of lipid sterolic extract. More concentrated, critical extracts of Saw Palmetto, particularly when combined with higher doses of Beta Sitosterol, above and beyond what naturally occurs in Saw Palmetto, are documented to produce better treatment outcomes for BPH compared to the standard, lipid sterolic extract. If prostate research (which provided the original hair growth cues for both Propecia and Avodart) is any indication, these newer, multi-component formulations will invariably produce better hair growth results as well.
L’Oreal uses 100mg of Beta Sitosterol, extracted from Pine fiber, in its multi-component oral hair loss treatment sold in Europe under the name Hair Mass for Men, specifically to neutralize DHT. L’Oreal found what it termed significantly positive results in in-house trials evaluating the effects of Beta Sitosterol alone on men’s hair loss.
Triarco’s patented prostate formula, ALPHASTAT combines Saw Palmetto Extract/Phytosterol complex with Astaxanthin, which they have documented and published, drops serum DHT, Estradiol, and raises Testosterone- all beneficial for both hair and health.
The bioavailability of Astaxanthin has been optimized with the addition of phospholipids, which enhance its absorption by a factor of 12.
Those wishing to cost effectively benefit from the documented Testosterone raising and DHT lowering and binding inhibition effects of ALPHASTAT can simply combine 1 capsule of Super Saw Palmetto with Beta Sitosterol along with 1 capsule of Astaxanthin with phospholipids.
The bottom line is that Saw Palmetto is definitely worth using as an adjunctive hair loss intervention, particularly in light of this recent study that showed it produced an increase in hair growth in about 40% of the subjects over a two year period. The hair growth effects were achieved by only using a standard lipid sterolic extract. If Prostate research offers any indication, these hair growth effects would be much more pronounced by using a more powerful patented CO2 critical extract of Saw Palmetto, particularly in combination with Beta Sitosterol. Add Astaxanthin, and the picture gets even better. Not only will you hair respond positively, but your Prostate function, skin, libido, and overall health will as well.