Alcohol and Hair Loss – Does One Affect the Other?

The average person sheds between 50 and 100 hairs each day. So, seeing a few strands on your brush or comb shouldn’t alarm you. But what if you suspect you’re losing more than what’s considered normal? Well, before you look too far, look no closer than that beer or glass of wine that might be on hand as you read this blog.

While there is no direct link between alcohol consumption and hair loss, excessive drinking can lead to other issues, like nutritional deficiencies, that can in turn cause your hair to thin.

Poor Nutrition

Alcohol, especially beer and liquor, lacks nutritional benefits. When you consume large quantities of alcohol on a regularly basis, you also may be neglecting other aspects of a nutritious diet. Heavy drinking can also make you feel full, which can lead to malnutrition. The right balance of vitamins, minerals, fats, carbohydrates, and fats is essential to maintaining a healthy head of hair and scalp.

Poor Absorption of Nutrients

Heavy drinking interferes with the absorption of essential nutrients. It can destroy your stomach lining, thus increasing acid production in the digestive system. This makes it difficult for your body to properly absorb nutrients. And because heavy alcohol consumption has a diuretic effect, it can lead to decreased levels of magnesium and potassium which are both necessary for optimal health, hair included.

Other Links to Hair Loss

In addition to poor nutritional habits, there are other ways alcohol can indirectly lead to hair loss.

  • Alcohol dehydrates, which can make existing hair follicles dry and brittle, and more likely to fall out.
  • Alcohol can cause sugar spikes, which have been linked to pattern baldness.
  • Alcohol disrupts sleep, which can increase stress – a known cause of hair loss.


What Can I Do?

The good news is that reducing your alcohol consumption, improving your diet, drinking plenty of water and getting quality sleep can help you prevent anything but normal hair loss. Experts recommend drinking in moderation – one drink per day for women, and two for men. One drink is defined as 5 ounces of wine, 12 ounces of beer, or 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits. As always, consult your doctor for guidance.

Or, if you need guidance on what to do about existing hair loss, then we’re the medical team to turn to – DiStefano Hair Restoration Center. Schedule your free consultation today so we can address your concerns, answer your questions, and show you the way forward.