What is Saw Palmetto?
In its raw form, Saw Palmetto is a plant native to the Caribbean and is currently found in the south-eastern United States. It grows in clumps or dense thickets in sandy coastal areas, and as undergrowth in pine woods or hardwood hammocks. Saw Palmetto is a plant with small berries that has been used by Native Americans as medicine and food for hundreds of years.
What is Saw Palmetto used to treat?
Saw Palmetto has been used to treat several health issues including bladder infections, prostate cancer, and a decreased sex drive. It has also been used as an alternative remedy to treat hair loss although evidence of its effectiveness in all of these symptoms is very mixed as you can see below!
Hair loss in both men and women is called Androgenetic Alopecia, and it’s common as everyone ages. It’s caused by the hormone testosterone, and its conversion into the hormone Dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is the hormone responsible for hair loss. The effects of Saw Palmetto are said to resemble the actions and effects of the drug Finasteride, also known by its brand name Propecia. Both are believed to inhibit a particular enzyme called 5-alpha reductase, which is an enzyme needed to convert Testosterone to DHT. And like Saw Palmetto, Finasteride is primarily used to treat prostate enlargement and hair loss.
Saw Palmetto comes in several different forms, including:
- Whole dried berries
- Liquid extracts
- Powdered capsules
Although some early research suggested that Saw Palmetto could benefit people with BPH symptoms, later studies contradicted these findings. A study published in 2011 followed the progress of 306 men with moderate BPH symptoms over 72 weeks as they took either Saw Palmetto fruit extracts or a placebo. The results showed that there was no significant difference in the results between the two groups - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3326341/
These findings support 2006 research, which found no improvement in BPH symptoms after 12 months of saw palmetto use - https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa053085
Another study showed that Saw Palmetto has no efficacy at all for benign prostatic hyperplasia - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14665895
Despite its popularity as an herbal remedy, it seems there is no scientific evidence to suggest that Saw Palmetto is effective for any health condition.
Side effects and interactions
Saw Palmetto generally is considered to be safe, but it’s not recommended for children, or pregnant and breastfeeding women. Rare side effects include mild headaches and stomach pains. Stomach irritation can be avoided by taking the extract with food.
There are more effective treatments for hair loss problems and one of those supplements, is a Help Hair Shake. Help Hair Shakes have been developed specially to provide the proteins you need, along with all the essential vitamins and minerals to support hair growth. Help Hair uses Whey Protein Concentrate in all the shakes. Protein is the most important nutrient for hair as each hair follicle consists of 97% protein content. Protein is broken down into amino acids and then processed into a fibrous structure, called Keratin, which is the key structural component of your hair, skin and nails. Help Hair uses all-natural Whey Protein Concentrate to provide the necessary blend of amino acids needed to accelerate healthy hair growth.
The Help Hair shake not only tastes great, but it will also help you accelerate your hair growth! One scoop, twice a day is all you need to keep your hair looking healthier and fuller.