Hair loss treatment: Aloe vera contains important minerals that could promote hair growth

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The ancient thick-leaved plant has been valued for its regenerative properties. As well as being nutrient dense, it contains amino acids, minerals, plant steroids and fatty acids. How can it promote hair growth? Part of the Liliaceae family, the aloe vera plant contains copper and zinc, which are important for hair growth. But it’s not just now that we, as a society, have recognised the benefits of the plant.

Aloe vera has been popular for centuries, and for good reasons too; it contributes to a healthy scalp, which is essential for hair growth.

Research also suggests aloe vera can stimulate blood circulation and improve the delivery of oxygen and nutritions to hair follicles.

Copper and zinc

In the Annals of Dermatoloy scientific journal, scientists wanted to investigate the impact copper and zinc deficiencies have on hair loss.

In the study, there were 30 healthy controls and 312 patients who were diagnosed with different types of hair loss:

  • Alopecia areata
  • Male pattern baldness
  • Female pattern baldness
  • Telogen effluvium

DermNet NZ confirmed that alopecia areata is the term used to describe one, or more, tough bald patches that suddenly appear on the scalp.

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Meanwhile, telogen effluviumm is a “non-scarring form of hair loss” that can affect up to 50 percent of the scalp.

Zinc and copper serum concentrations were evaluated between controls and each of the four types of hair loss patients.

In all of the hair loss patients, the average concentration of zinc was “significantly lower” than the control group.

The scientists didn’t find copper to be “significantly” lower in the hair loss group compared to controls.

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Thus, the researchers concluded that zinc deficiency plays a “key role in hair loss” whereas the “effect of copper on hair growth still needs more study”.

Fresh aloe vera

If you’d like to apply the gel from an aloe vera plant directly onto your hair, you’ll need an aloe vera plant.

The next step would be to cut a leave from a live aloe vera plant and, using a spoon, collect the gel.

Before using aloe vera gel on a large part of the body, do test a small area, such as the wrist.

This is to make sure you don’t have an allergic reaction to the aloe vera plant.

Once you’ve confirmed you’re not allergic to the gel, it can be mixed with coconut or olive oil before rubbing the mixture directly onto the scalp.

Leave the hair treatment sit on the scalp and hair for an hour or so, and then use mild shampoo to wash the hair and scalp.

This process is to be repeated up to three times per week – as with everything, consistency is paramount.

Aloe vera is also a popular ingredient in hair masks you can buy in supermarkets and pharmacies, such as Superdrug and Boots.

Hair masks containing aloe vera are also enriched with products such as honey, jojoba oil, egg whites or fenugreek.

Please follow the product instructions if you choose to indulge in a hair mask.

Aloe vera gel is available in liquid form, in an oil, gels, capsules, and shampoos.

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