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Is selenium toxic for hair? Does your hair vitamin have added selenium damaging your hair.

Posted by Dr Larry Shapiro is Developer and Founder of Help Hair Shake and Products on

help hair shakes for great hair

Selenium is a trace element found in many foods. But over the paid few years hair vitamin companies have placed this trace element in their ingredient list to somehow differentiate their product.

This seems to be the case with hair vitamin companies that have formulas that were not formulated by actual hair doctors and then place their product on the market without really doing their research. 

Selenium toxicity is a serious problem and selenium does not need to be added to a hair supplement since it is found naturally in foods and multi vitamins. In fact too much selenium has shown to be toxic for hair and will aggravate hair loss. 

Unfortunately for the consumer and sometimes for their referring doctor they do not look carefully at the ingredient list and see that some of the ingredients are toxic to hair.

This is the case for selenium.

Selenium toxicity:

Selenium is prevalent in many foods and multivitamins as illustrated by the NIH government website.

This is from the NIH government website.

"What foods provide selenium?

Selenium is found naturally in many foods. The amount of selenium in plant foods depends on the amount of selenium in the soil where they were grown. The amount of selenium in animal products depends on the selenium content of the foods that the animals ate. You can get recommended amounts of selenium by eating a variety of foods, including the following:

  • Seafood
  • Meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products
  • Breads, cereals, and other grain products

What kinds of selenium dietary supplements are available?

Selenium is available in many multivitamin-mineral supplements and other dietary supplements. It can be present in several different forms, including selenomethionine and sodium selenate.

Am I getting enough selenium?

Most Americans get enough selenium from their diet because they eat food grown or raised in many different areas, including areas with soil that is rich in selenium."

Because selenium toxicity can occur it is important to avoid supplements 

that add a huge amount.

Here is an excerpt from a journal discussing too much selenium. .

"Nowadays, when miraculously promising diets and supplements containing selenium are many times taken

indiscriminately, selenosis must be remembered in case of telogen effluvium with fatigue, diarrhea, arthralgia,

headache, and nausea. Hyperselenemia can also be found in refractory effluviums while hyposelenemia may be

present in total parenteral nutrition or short-bowel syndrome patients. On the other hand, there is no consistent data

to sustain the association between alopecia areata and serum selenium levels. Therefore, physicians need to share

their experiences and data, focusing on better criteria for requesting selenium tests, thus reducing unnecessary

expenses and treatments based exclusively on laboratory values."

It is important to take a product that is based on science and formulated from an actual hair doctor who has done

extensive research and has thousands and thousands of patients and customers and clinics who have provided essential feedback so that you are actually taking a product that works.

If your hair vitamin adds selenium especially at levels that are close to toxic (amongst other items) then we suggest

reviewing your product and questioning the

hair care provider or manufacturer since they probably do not even know that their product can cause further damage

to your hair.

Help hair does not add any selenium to our products.  

helphair for great hair


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