Male pattern baldness or androgenic alopecia is hair loss that occurs as a result of alteration of male hormones. It is also linked with genetics.
It is characterised by receding hairline or hair loss at the crown. Changes in hormones lead to shrinkage of hair follicles, thus leading to hair loss and thinning. Medications and hair transplantation are the common treatments.
Curcuma aeruginosa, is a type of turmeric that has pink and blue color on the inside unlike Curcuma longa which is a bright orange or yellow. The essential oils of this species have medicinal properties.
This study reports an unusual application of the turmeric family, C.aeruginosa is therapeutic for male pattern baldness.
What happened in this study?
87 men with androgenic alopecia were recruited for this study. They were assigned to following groups:
• 5% Curcuma aeruginosa extract
• 5% minoxidil (FDA approved medication for male pattern baldness)
• Combination of the two
These treatments were applied twice daily for 6 months. Effects were assessed on the basis of target area hair count, photographic review and participants’ perception of hair growth.
What were the results?
The combination formula resulted in statistically significant improvements which were assessed by photographic review as well as by participants’ assessment. Hair shedding also reduced.
Similar effects were observed by individual treatment with minoxidil and Curcuma aeruginosa extract.
How did this occur?
Curcuma aeruginosa extract contains compounds which serve as inhibitors of 5 alpha- reductase. 5-alpha reductase is an enzyme involved in the metabolism of hormones.
Inhibitors of this enzyme work by converting testosterone to a more potent form which is helpful for treating male hormone related disorders.
5-alpha reductase inhibitors are drugs used to treat male pattern baldness and C.aeruginosa is a natural agent that serves this function.
What does this means?
Curcuma aeruginosa extract, a species related to turmeric, in combination with minoxidil can help prevent hair loss and support hair regrowth in men.
Read paper here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21756154