Hair Loss Causes: Can Too Much Vitamin A Cause Balding?

July 30, 2014 — by Robert True
Tags: Hair Loss Causes

A man in a grey room looks up in the cornerWhen it comes to treating patients at True & Dorin Medical Group, it's important that we identify the root cause and act accordingly. In essence, different hair loss causes have different hair restoration solutions, so we cannot take a one-size-fits-all approach to treatment. This may be why we are such a trusted name in hair restoration in New York City, Long Island, Boston, and New Jersey.

One cause of hair loss that is surprising to many patients is vitamin A. Let's look at this particular cause of hair loss and how it can be treated.

What is vitamin A?

Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that is crucial for many basic functions in the body, including cell reproduction, maintaining good vision, proper function of the immune system, and the growth of hair.

Foods that are a good source of vitamin A include:

  • Carrots
  • Leafy greens
  • Liver
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Broccoli
  • Papaya
  • Mangoes
  • Pumpkins
  • Peaches
  • Apricots
  • Dairy products

Can too much vitamin A lead to hair loss?

Yes.

Even though vitamin A is essential, too much of a good thing is bad for you. One symptom of excessive vitamin A is hair loss.

Why is that the case?

Excess vitamin A will be stored by your body since it is fat-soluble. Too much vitamin A in your system can prove toxic.

Additional signs and symptoms of excessive vitamin A include:

  • Blurry vision
  • Headaches
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Muscle fatigue
  • Irritability

Severe cases of excessive vitamin A may also involve fever, weight loss, dry skin, anemia, bone fractures, and insomnia. If you should notice any combination of these symptoms that have been listed, be sure to meet with your general practitioner right away.

How much vitamin A should I be getting?

Adults should generally be getting about 5,000 IU of vitamin A a day, with 10,000 IU being the upper limit for acceptable daily vitamin A intake. Anything in excess of that can prove harmful.

Keep in mind that it is difficult to overdose on vitamin A through diet alone. People usually experience problems with toxicity as a result of dietary supplements. Having a balanced diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables will not cause dangerous/toxic accumulations of vitamin A in your system.

Treating Hair Loss Caused by Vitamin A

In many cases, the hair loss caused by vitamin A is reversible simply by addressing the excess vitamin A in the body. This will usually involve the use of intravenous fluids and diuretics in addition to other medical treatments that help the patient process the stored vitamin A. Patients will be asked to stop taking vitamin A supplements and may also be asked to temporarily avoid certain foods that contain vitamin A until treatment is over. Afterward, patients can return a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats; vitamin A supplements should be used with caution and under doctor supervision.

If the hair loss experienced is especially severe, our hair loss specialists can look into various treatment options to create a fuller hairline.

Learn More About the Causes of Hair Loss and Your Options for Treatment

If you would like more information about the causes of hair loss and what we can do to help you have a healthy head of natural hair, be sure to contact our hair restoration specialists today. The entire team at True & Dorin Medical Group looks forward to your visit and helping you achieve excellent results.