Can Pumpkin Seed Oil Prevent Hair Loss and Prostate Problems?
Excessive levels of the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT) is a common cause of both hair loss and prostate problems for men.
Pumpkin seed oil contains many beneficial health nutrients and two in particular that are believed to provide protection against DHT damage. Here’s how pumpkin seed oil can help maintain healthy hair and prevent male prostate enlargement.
How DHT Causes Hair Loss and Prostate Problems
If you’re a man, regularly producing too much dihydrotestosterone in your body can cause hair loss and eventually male pattern baldness.
Scientists believe DHT causes hair loss by attaching to your hair follicles and shortening their anagen (growth) phase. Over time, hairs become progressively weaker and finer, until they simply stop growing altogether.
In the case of prostate problems, DHT is known to promote cell proliferation in the prostate gland. This can result in an enlarged prostate, also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).
BPH is a painful condition that leads to a constriction of the urethra and discomfort and problems urinating. It is a growing problem for older males in the USA and other Western countries.
It is normal for men to have some DHT in our bodies, but the increase in prostate problems and early-onset male pattern baldness in recent decades, would seem to suggest our modern lifestyles and diets are producing too much of it. Environmental xenoestrogens are also another possible cause.
Regardless, most men would be likely to both feel better and have less health problems, like enlarged prostates and thinning hair, if less of their natural testosterone was converting to dihydrotestosterone.
Beta-Sitosterol and Pumpkin Seed Oil
The phytosterol beta-sitosterol has been shown to block the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone in our bodies. It does this by inhibiting the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase that is responsible for converting testosterone to DHT.
Unrefined pumpkin seed oil has good levels of beta-sitosterol and has been studied in particular for its beneficial effect on prostate problems.
In this Hungarian study of patients with stage I and stage II benign prostatic hyperplasia, subjects were treated with a daily dose of pumpkin seed oil and more than 80% experienced improvement in BPH symptoms with no reported side effects.
Pumpkin Seed Oil and Delta-7-Sterol
Another compound in pumpkin seed oil called delta-7-sterol works to reduce the effects of DHT in a different way. Delta-7-sterol is a very mild steroid that specifically competes with the stronger dihydrotestosterone at the receptor sites of prostate cells and possibly hair follicles.
Where delta-7-sterol attaches to cell receptors, DHT is blocked from having its damaging effect on the cells, like those in the prostate gland or hair follicle.
Delta-7-sterol has not been studied in the same way as beta-sitosterol, but the anecdotal evidence points to the effectiveness of pumpkin seed oil as a DHT blocker. Whether this is due only to the delta-7-sterol, or in combination with its beta-sitosterol, fatty acids and antioxidants, many men report positive results from regular use of a good pumpkin seed oil like this.
Full spectrum pumpkin seed oil capsules are also available, with just $4 international delivery. These make taking the oil very convenient and should be had with both breakfast and dinner.
There are many more pumpkin seed oil health benefits for both men and women. With the widespread and increasing prevalence of both hair loss and prostate problems though, it may be a particularly valuable preventative addition to the male diet, especially for older men.
Black currant seed oil with it’s high levels of gamma linoleic acid is another strong DHT blocker and a powerful natural treatment for thinning hair well worth considering if you’re concerned about hair loss.