Is It Safe for Men to Take Flax Seeds for Hair Growth

Is It Safe for Men to Take Flax Seeds for Hair Growth

Flax seeds are recommended by doctors and other experts for healthy hair growth . But is it really safe for men to take flax seeds?

Flax seeds have various nutrients, including protein and vitamins which are crucial for hair growth and strength. Hence flax seeds are recommended for healthy hair. However, are they safe for men? Should men take flax seeds? Couple of research studies indicate that flax seeds could reduce the level of testosterone in male body. Which could lead to various other issues.

Do not jump into any conclusions just yet. Let’s analyze the facts that I have gathered, so that you could decide for yourself.

Nutritional content in flax seeds

Flax seeds are rich in various kinds of nutrients [1]. Due to this densed nutritional content, it is recommended to overcome various health implications.

So what are the nutritional contents in flax seeds?

NutritionContent per 100 g
Proteins18 g
Total Carbohydrates29 g
        Dietary Fiber27 g
        Sugar1.6 g
Total Fats42 g
        Saturated3.7 g
        Polyunsaturated29 g
        Monounsaturated8 g

Flax seeds are rich in calcium, vitamin B-6, omega 3 fatty acids and small amounts of vitamin C. 

Does eating flax seeds help hair growth

There are not many research studies to prove a direct relationship between taking flax seeds and hair growth. However, when we consider the nutrition in flax seeds, we can make an assumption that it can help hair growth.

As I mentioned earlier, flax seeds are rich in various nutrients which are crucial for the human body. These nutrients will also help for hair growth and to keep your hair healthy.

The high content of protein is essential to repair the damaged cells and tissues and help to produce keratin which is crucial for the strength and structure of the hair [2].

Flax seeds are a well known source for the omega 3 fatty acids, which are essential for the nourishment of hair follicles and hair shafts. Omega fatty acids will help to make the hair strong and reduce the risk of hair breakage and hair fall [3].

The flax seeds also contain vitamin B-6 which will help to promote a healthy blood flow throughout the body and the antioxidant properties of vitamin C will help to fight against the oxidative stress and free radicals [4]. Both of which are essential for a healthy growth [5].

When considering these facts, we could safely say that the nutrients in flax seeds could help to nourish your hair, strengthen it and also help the hair growth process.

Does flax seeds increase estrogen

Apart from being highly nutritional densed, flax seeds also contain a compound called lignans. The lignans are found in fiber rich plant based foods [6].

flax seeds

Lignans are a type of phytoestrogen found in flax seeds. Phyto means plant and phytoestrogen means plant based estrogen.

Now here comes the confusing part, do they act the same as estrogen found in humans when consumed? Do they increase the level of estrogen in our body? 

Well, unfortunately, after searching for hours and hours, I could not find a solid research source to prove the effect of phytoestrogen on the level of estrogen in the human body.

However, I have found out two sources describing the effect of phytoestrogen on the level of estrogen.

The findings of a research study

In a research study scientists have tried to verify the pros and cons of the phytoestrogen. According to this research study, the phytoestrogens could have both estrogenic and anti-estrogenic effects [7].

Which means it can decrease the level of estrogen or increase the level of estrogen as well. Because of these properties, the effects of phytoestrogen has been a controversial and complex topic under discussion for years.

Explanation of Dr. Eric Berg

According to a Dr. Eric Berg DC, whom I look up for medical advice through youtube suggests that the phytoestrogen in flax seeds does not increase the level of estrogen.

Source : Youtube Channel “Dr. Eric Berg DC“. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KfHxxH0CDhM)

Instead they would block the estrogen receptors and decrease the bad estrogen in the human body. Therefore the ratio of good estrogen to bad estrogen changes, making the good estrogen levels high relative to the bad estrogens.

According to him, there will not be a change in the level of estrogen in our body, but only a change in the ratio. He further states that, as a result men should not worry about the effect of flax seeds on increasing their estrogen level.

May be due to this effect of lowering bad estrogen is the reason why flax seeds are recommended for women with breast cancer, menopause issues which all could arise due to the imbalances in estrogen levels [8] [9].

Does flax seeds decrease testosterone

Here comes the part that I am so worried about. Does flax seeds reduce the level of testosterone in our body? Well if it is, it could be a deal breaker for me.

As you all know testosterone is the male sex hormone, which is crucial for muscle building, determining fat distribution and more importantly for the sex drive of men. Not only in men, testosterones are also present in women in small amounts.

There are a couple of research studies to prove that flax seeds could reduce the level of testosterone in the human body.

One research study was done on a single woman suffering from polycystic ovarian syndrome, which could occur due to high levels of testosterone. When the woman was fed with flax seeds, a reduction of testosterone was observed [10].

The other research was done on a group of men suffering from prostate cancer, and its results also indicated a decrease in testosterone after being fed with flax seeds [11].

Yes, there can be other reasons which would have accelerated testosterone reduction in both of these researches. However, they both did end up with the same result.

This drop in testosterone could cause a drop in sex drive, mood changes, lack of muscle strength in men and even can pave the way to type 2 diabetes in young adults and healthy males [12].

So if you are a man having a healthy level of testosterone and your goal is not reducing the level of testosterone, then I do not see the point of taking flax seeds. Unless you are trying to reduce your level of testosterone, since high levels could cause prostate cancer in men.

My opinion

Flax seeds are rich in various nutrients which are crucial for hair growth. However the importance of such nutrients in flax seeds comes into play only if our body is deprived of such nutrients.

Our body can get the recommended level of these nutritions [13] from other types of food that we eat. Proteins are highly abundant in meat and fish we eat, which also include omega 3 fatty acids. We can get a variety of vitamins from the fruit that we eat.

The impact of flax seeds on estrogen is still unclear. However, you need to keep in mind that most of the food that we eat could increase the level of estrogen in our body. 

So I would worry more about food like bread, soft drinks (soda), food with refined sugar which could raise the level of estrogen rather than flax seeds.

But the impact of flax seeds on the level of testosterone is a deal breaker for me.

Most men have low levels of testosterone these days, especially due to the food that we eat, and high levels of stress etc. The fact that flax seeds also reduce the level of testosterone, could make things worse.

In my personal opinion, I would not eat flax seeds, unless I’m detected with high levels of testosterone (Hopefully, I wish I wouldn’t be) and a specialized doctor recommends flax seeds to reduce them.

I would not risk my manhood just because it is dense with nutrients which are good for hair, which I can also get from eating other types of food. 

May be it’s because of this testosterone reducing property of flax seeds, it’s recommended for people with hair loss. Because high levels of testosterone could elevate the level of DHT, which could trigger male pattern baldness.

Now all the facts are in front of you, it’s your choice.

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