There seems to be an endless list of potential hair loss treatments available to us and not too much to tell us which will work best for us. A lot of these treatments can work out very expensive, so naturally we all want a cheaper alternative. Among the home remedies that the researchers found to be flimsy were garlic gel, Vitamin D, E and B7, massage, aromatherapy, acupuncture, procyanidin, various amino acids and curcumin. That wasn’t to say that none of these worked as treatments, but that the science that backed up the claims needed further research. With time we may find out more about these particular home remedies and how seriously we should take them.
Topical Garlic was one of the home remedies that the team of researches picked out as needing further research to fully under understand the mechanism of action of the scalp and hair. After 6 months of trials with Curcumin, no significant improvement was noted. Vitamin D was noted as having potential, but current research into was highly flawed. Small sample sizes and lack of controls in the studies so far needed improving on before Vitamin D can be evaluated correctly.
So, which alternative therapies turned up promising results as part of this study? There were in fact 8 different home therapies that actually turned up as promising. These 8 were Rosemary Oil, Caffeine, Zinc, Onion Juice, Melatonin, Saw Palmetto, Pumpkin Seed Oil and Marine Proteins. The scientists wrote “Rosemary oil appeared to be a safe non-prescription alternative for [androgenetic alopecia], and the results of this study merit further investigation.” What this study has done has laid the foundation work for further research to be conducted on the 8 potential treatments to really understand the mechanism of action and how effective they could be.
Caffeine, Saw Palmetto and Marine Proteins are more well researched than some of the other identified Hair Loss treatments. Caffeine shampoos have become increasingly popular as anti-hair loss shampoos over the last 5-10 years. Whether caffeine has any relevance to hair loss as a shampoo is still not known. It is more likely to be effective in a topical solution that is applied and left on the scalp for several hours. Saw Palmetto as a tablet is a very popular alternative treatment to drug treatments. Saw Palmetto is one of few things that is actually a treatment that works by preventing the cause of hair loss. Many hair loss treatments instead are battling against rather than preventing the cause. The study also found that Marine Proteins led to a significant improvement in a trial.
In conclusion the studies lead author Anna-Marie Hosking had this to say “There are a variety of complementary and alternative medicines on the market for alopecia; however, only a few are backed by strong clinical evidence.”