Why Does Low Iron Cause Hair Loss?

By Dr. Jake Rabinowitz


  • Low iron causes hair loss due to slowing down hair follicles and reducing keratin production. 
  • Hair thickening is expected when ferritin levels surpass 100 ng/ml. 
  • Iron Lift can help reverse hair loss and restore healthy hair. 

Does low iron cause hair loss?

Yes — hair thinning or loss is a very common symptom of low iron. If your hair is thinning and you lose way too much with every shower or brush, low iron may be to blame. Keep reading to learn more about why this symptom occurs and how you can fix it. 

How does the body make hair?

To understand why low iron causes hair loss, consider how the body makes new hair. Hair follicles are structures at the surface of the skin that generate hair. Cells surrounding hair follicles are specialized to make keratin, which is the protein that makes up hair. When these cells produce enough keratin, the keratin is pushed up through the hair follicle to lengthen existing hair or sprout a new strand. 

Why does low iron slow down cells that produce new hair?

Oxygen is needed to generate the energy used by these keratin-producing cells. This oxygen is carried to the cells by a protein called hemoglobin, which contains iron. As a result, when someone is low iron, their cells for producing hair become oxygen-deprived. This lack of production leads to hair thinning and ultimately hair loss. 

How does low iron reduce synthesis of keratin and biotin ?

In addition to helping transport oxygen, iron plays a large role supporting various chemical reactions in the body. Among these reactions are the synthesis of keratin and biotin (a vitamin that also supports keratin synthesis). Thus, being low iron reduces the body’s ability to synthesize keratin and biotin, further impeding the growth and maintenance of healthy hair. 

What ferritin levels are needed to regrow hair?

Ferritin is an iron-binding protein and ferritin levels are the best indicator of iron status. Many people experience hair loss with ferritin below 50 ng/ml. For optimal hair regrowth, ferritin should be raised and maintained over 100 ng/ml. 

How can Iron Lift help to restore luscious hair?

Iron Lift is a unique solution for your hair problems. It has highly absorbed iron and biotin. A single bag of Iron Lift can stop hair loss and a consistent regimen can restore healthy hair in no time. 

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  • Dr. Jake Rabinowitz

    Dr. Jake Rabinowitz is a chemical engineer, PhD, and founder of Smart Eats, where he develops nutrition products with an industry-leading food scientist and a renowned gastrointestinal doctor / nutritionist. You can learn more about Jake's work career on his LinkedIn Profile and his highly-cited research contributions on his Google Scholar Profile.

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