Magnesium, Iodine, Copper, Calcium & Potassium Deficiency Hair Loss

Does magnesium, iodine, copper, calcium or potassium deficiency result to hair loss? Read on to get facts and to utilize these minerals for hair growth, deficiency symptoms, causes and best supplements.

Magnesium and Hair Loss/Growth-Deficiency Symptoms and Causes

How Magnesium and Hair Growth/Loss relate?

Magnesium does a lot for your body including reducing fatigue, stress and weakness among others such as ensuring proper functioning of the heart, muscle and the kidneys. Any surplus is normally stored in the bones for use at a later time.

The relation between magnesium deficiency and hair loss is indirectly related to calcium deposition. It is calcium deposition on the bones of the skull that leads to calcification and further knitting over a long period of time. This calcification in the bones result in the closure of the skull sutures over time. It also leads to narrowing of the blood vessels that ramify the scalp and the follicles.

Therefore, the dermal papillae of the scalp and the follicle bed are deprived of nutrients and minerals that are essential for the proper growth of hair follicles (Dr. Ballenger). Direct deposition of calcium on hair follicles also leads to hair loss.

Now that you understand the pathology of hair loss through calcification, it is important to keep your calcium in check all the time. How is this done? Keeping off excess calcium from your tissues relies on magnesium. You will learn more about calcium shortly.

Magnesium deficiency symptoms & Causes

The symptoms of magnesium deficiency can be classified as either classical (Clinical) or Subclinical (Latent) symptoms. The former is related to those which directly point out to magnesium as a deficiency whether as a differential or definitive diagnosis such as arrhythmia. The latter points out to symptoms that are concealed and difficult to distinguish deficiency from disease states such as depression and fatigue.

  1. Myalgia, spasms and twitching of the muscles – this may manifest as twitching of the muscles of the lower eyelid or cramping legs in the middle of the night. Deficiency of magnesium is also linked to excessively painful menstrual cramps in women.
  2. Heart defects – since the heart is mainly muscle, its contractions require magnesium. This mineral is also required for the proper electrical neuronal excitation of the heart. It therefore arises that deficiency in magnesium results in arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats), palpitations and angina. The angina is caused by muscles spasms of the heart. The effect of all this is that there may be altered blood pressure in periphery.
  3. Fatigue, tension and anxiety – magnesium modulates your nervous system and increases your tolerance to stress thereby reducing anxiety. Restlessness is a sign of anxiety and as this may occur more in children, it may arise due to deficiency of magnesium.
  4. Testosterone deficiency – magnesium has been implicated in the over-expression of testosterone that may lead to androgenic alopecia and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) in men and women respectively.
  5. Lowering risk of kidney stones – magnesium prevents the buildup of calcium in the kidneys and therefore prevent calcium stones or calculi. this is especially when combined with
  6. Metabolic –signs that show increased calcium in the body cells, hyperglycemia, calcium deficiency and potassium deficiency all point out to magnesium deficiency. Growth may also be retarded and there may be failure to thrive in children.
Minerals are good for healthy hair growth
Hair Loss- female

Diet, Supplements & Oil with Magnesium for Hair Growth

Sources that contain high amounts of magnesium include beans, apples, avocados, bananas, whole grains and apricots. There may be magnesium in your water if you take hard water. The Required Daily Amounts (RDA) of magnesium is between 400 – 430 mgs for males while at least 310 mgs for females.

Supplements are also recommended by dietitians so as to complement the dietary magnesium. You can get supplements from the food and drug stores/pharmacies/clinics.

Purchase magnesium oil for topical use and apply it to your scalp though you should not leave it for more than 30 minutes or else your scalp may get dehydrated owing to the salts in the oil.

Iodine Deficiency Hair Loss-How does Iodine work for Hair Growth & Regrowth?

What is link between Iodine and Hair Loss

You can’t be looking at the relation between iodine and hair loss without mentioning thyroid health. Physiologically, thyroid gland relies on iodine from its stores to make hormones. Some of these hormones are involved in the growth and development of healthy hair.

According to a study published in the Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology, & Leprology (2001), there were findings that iodine treatment of the patients with alopecia had hair regrowth in a good number of them.

Iodine deficiency hair loss Symptoms & Causes

The myriad of symptoms that point out to iodine deficiency include:

Those signs and symptoms related to hair loss are;

  1. Growth of coarse hair
  2. Greying and whitening of hair in a premature manner
  3. Patches of bald scalp such as in alopecia areata
  4. Thinning of your hair

Those not related to hair loss include;

  1. Goiter
  2. Extreme weight gain
  3. Dizziness
  4. pendulum-shaped belly (central obesity)
  5. Insomnia
  6. Constipation
  7. Hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating)
  8. Edematous swelling of the ankles and wrists.

How to take Iodine for Hair growth/Regrowth

Applying white iodine to the scalp has been proven as a remedy to hair loss. This comes in handy when the hair loss has been caused by iodine deficiency. Topical iodine serves to provide iodine by penetrating the scalp into circulation. The levels of iodine are thus elevated.

It is worth remembering that just as in the mouthwash Povidone iodine, the iodine in this case also has antibiotic activity. This therefore allows the elimination of bacteria or fungi that may cause irritation, inflammation and hair loss. Wash your hair, clean with iodine and dry the scalp. Do this twice a day. Note any irritation that may arise from direct application on the scalp and dilute with a small amount of water.

You could add iodine to your shampoo, wash the scalp with it, and then pat dry. If you can access borax, 15 mL would serve well as a mixture with 2 – 3 drops of white iodine. Wash with this shampoo and pat dry.

Get dietary sources such as fish, yogurt, seaweed, egg and navy beans.

You could choose to take a safe nascent atomic iodine supplement too to boost hair growth.

Copper Supplement for Gray Hair & Deficiency Hair Loss

How is Copper good for Natural Healthy Hair?

Copper plays an integral part of the enzyme tyrosinase which is a cuproenzyme for melanin to be produced by melanocytes. Therefore, taking supplements that have copper helps in the synthesis and proper functioning of this enzyme and therefore production of melanin. This prevents the graying of hair.

Copper also is involved in the enhancement of optimal absorption of iron from the intestines. This has a positive implication on the prevention of anemia and alopecia related to deficiency of iron.

Does Copper Deficiency lead to Gray Hair & Hair Loss?

A convincing study has been done on black sheep whereby it was found that low amounts of copper led to alternate black and white bands in the wool and curliness was also reduced[1]. The hair contains eumelanin and pheomelanin which are responsible for dark and light colored hair respectively and are synthesized from the amino acid tyrosine.

It has been shown that grey hair has less copper alongside magnesium and calcium.

Copper Supplement for Gray Hair-Does it work?

Yes they do work. Copper peptides like GHK-Cu have been shown to stimulate the repair of skin and further increase the subcutaneous fat in the scalp. This strengthens the hair follicles. By stimulating the production of elastin, collagen and proteoglycans, the skin is kept hydrated and the thickness of the scalp is increased.

Since graying might also be caused by thinning of the hair, this complex, via stimulation of decorin, it inhibits formation of TGF-beta which has been involved in thinning of the follicle (Sugimoto et al).

Another way to go about it is to use diluted copper salicylate solution directly to the scalp and orally too.

How to take copper for Hair growth

Make sure that you take zinc supplements with copper supplements. Otherwise the high zinc/copper ratio may lead to greying of the hair. If you have bought copper supplements, read the instructions on the label carefully and seek further clarification if need arises from your pharmacist.

Calcium Deficiency Hair Loss & how to take for Hair Growth

  • Calcium and hair loss-Does calcium deficiency cause hair loss
  • How take calcium for Healthy hair growth

Calcium deficiency can cause hair loss. This is because it helps with the secretin of hormones and enzymes. These hormones may include those that promote cell growth as well as strengthening the hair. Calcium is well absorbed in the presence of vitamin D. therefore a deficiency of calcium could point out to vitamin D deficiency too.

Vitamin D has the ability to activate cells within the hair shaft and hence grow a healthier shaft. Some studies have shown that hair regrowth has occurred on patients who applied topical gel containing Vitamin D.

Get an RDA of 1,000 mg if you are an adult below 50 and 1,200 mg if above. For children between 1 and 3 years, 500 mg; 4 to 8 years old, 800 mg; and 9 to 18 years old 1,300 mg. Acquire these from dairy products, sardines, oranges and apricots.

Potassium and Hair Loss-Can low potassium cause hair loss?

Hypokalemia can also lead to loss of hair. This is due to the intimate relationship that exists between sodium and potassium around the hair follicles. The ratio helps in absorption of vital nutrients required for healthy hair. If there is an imbalance in the sodium/potassium ratio such as in hypernatremia, hair loss occurs.

The kidney is an important asset in the correction of this imbalance via the sodium-potassium pump that allows potassium to replace sodium. However, by taking more potassium and less sodium, this can be corrected in your diet.

Get potassium from;

  • Dairy foods, such as milk
  • Potatoes,
  • Broccoli
  • Yams,
  • Beans,
  • Whole grains
  • Brown rice
  • Wheat bran
  • Fruits such as figs, apples and peaches.


[1]  Adams, R. and Murray. F.: Minerals: Kill or Cure? Larchmont Books, NY 1974.

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