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Do supplements that increase pheomelanin change hair color?

Do supplements that increase pheomelanin change hair color?


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People take supplements and ivs with things like vitamin c, glutathione and msm that, over months, results in lighter skin color. This has been explained by the supplements increasing pheomelanin and others decreasing tyrosine. I've seen other people explain pheomelanin causes red, pink and yellow tones and is more abundant in people with red, orange and blonde hair. With that being said, if these supplements have been shown to lighten skin color, why aren't there any cases, to my knowledge, of them changing hair color? I suspect it is because the anagen phase of hair is longer than months. However, I've not seen any case of msm, glutathione or any supplements that results in increased pheomelanin production changing hair color over years. Can anyone explain this to me?


How to Take Melanin Internally to Change Your Hair Color

Generally, if you want to change your hair color, you need to have your hair dyed. Constantly coloring your hair can lead to stripping and damaging of hair that only makes it weaker over time. If you want to go the non-chemical route, you can take Melancor. This is a supplement that allows the melanin in the pill to combine with your hair's natural melanin that gives it its color. When the two combine, hair cells become revitalized and natural color begins to come back and replace the gray.

Swallow the Melancor pill whole do not crush it. Melancor forces melanocytes to increase your body's natural formulation of melanin pigments. It also prevents DHT from hindering the growth of hair follicles, which also leads to gray hair.

Take two pills twice daily. You should take them either during or after meals. You need a full stomach so that the pill does not make you nauseous.

Follow the instructions on the bottle, and consult a physician if desired results are not achieved, or if you are having reactions to the supplement.


1. What Is Melanin And Why Is It Important?

Scientifically speaking, melanin is produced by melanocytes (cells) in the stratum basale (lowest layer) of the skin [1]. It happens when the enzyme tyrosinase catalyzes tyrosine to convert to dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) [2].

According to scientific research, melanin can protect your skin from the harmful UV rays of the sun besides giving your skin its color. Recent studies also demonstrate the ability of melanin in decreasing the risk of skin cancer. [3]

Dr Harish says, “The shielding effect of melanin is achieved by its ability to serve as a physical barrier that scatters UVR and as an absorbent filter that reduces the penetration of UV through the epidermis (68). The efficacy of melanin as sunscreen was observed to be between 1.5 sun protective factors (SPF) and 4 SFP, implying that melanin absorbs 50% to 75% of UVR.”

He further adds, “It also functions as a free radical scavenger, which ultimately protects the skin. However, studies have found that melanin may have a weak carcinogenic effect that can contribute to cancer formation. But its deleterious effects have not been proved yet and research is on.”


Paternal epigenetic inheritance

Rahia Mashoodh , Frances A. Champagne , in Transgenerational Epigenetics (Second Edition) , 2019

List of abbreviations

Brain-derived neurotrophic factor

Cannabinoid receptor type 1

Corticotropin-releasing factor receptor 2

Differential allocation hypothesis

Guanine nucleotide binding protein alpha stimulating gene

Intergenic germ line–derived differentially methylated region

Interleukin 13 receptor alpha 2

Calcium-activated potassium channel subunit beta-2

Tyrosine kinase receptor gene

Long interspersed element-1

Mesoderm-specific transcript gene

Paternal age at conception

Paternally expressed gene 1

Paternally expressed gene 3

P-element induced wimpy testis gene

Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha

RAS protein–specific guanine nucleotide-releasing factor 1

Small nuclear ribonucleoprotein polypeptide N

Zinc-finger protein regulator of apoptosis and cell cycle arrest gene


Can pills really take away your gray?

Anderson Cooper, Emmylou Harris and Toni Morrison are among famous faces known also for their striking silver tresses. But while they and others embrace their gray hair, plenty of Americans — celebrities and non-celebs alike — are more than eager to make it go away.

Targeting these consumers is a relatively new category of over-the-counter supplements containing a mixture of vitamins, minerals and enzymes and touted as an easy, natural alternative to hair dyes. According to the pitches, these products not only restore your locks to their original color, but also prevent them from ever turning white.

Even beauty-industry titan L'Oreal has shown interest in the hair-raising idea. Last year, Bruno Bernard, head of the company's hair biology group, told the United Kingdom's Daily Mail newspaper that it was working on an anti-gray pill that it expected to be in production by 2015. This summer, it was reported by New York Magazine that the Paris-based company had filed a patent application for what it called a "secret potion that will prevent gray hair. Forever."

Company spokeswoman Suzie Davidowitz told USA TODAY, "Although we have chosen not to unveil any further information, we can affirm that this discovery underscores the importance L'Oreal places in its advanced research."

But several smaller companies are already up and running with anti-gray pills with such catchy names as Go Away Gray, Get Away Grey and Grey Defence.

Cathy Beggan's Go Away Gray claims to "permanently cure gray hair" in as little as eight weeks by delivering the enzyme catalase to the hair follicle.

Go Away Gray -- can such enzyme supplements really keep your hair from going gray? (Photo: Rise-N-Shine)

Beggan is a former real-estate marketing executive whose Sparta, N.J.-based company, Rise-N-Shine LLC, sells more than a dozen products promising help for everything from low energy to wrinkles.

Her anti-gray remedy was inspired by a much-publicized 2009 study published in the Federation of the American Societies for Experimental Biology's FASEB Journal that found catalase counteracts the body's natural production of hydrogen peroxide, which, over time, bleaches the hair of its natural color from the inside out, leaving it gray.

"That research showed that as we age, we produce less catalase, preventing the hydrogen peroxide from being broken down," Beggan says.

Go Away Gray (sold online and in stores for $29.99 for a 30-day supply of 60 pills) puts catalase, a plant derivative, back in the body, breaking down the hydrogen peroxide into water and oxygen and halting the natural graying process, she says. The product affects only the new hair as it comes in at the root, she adds.

Robin Duner-Fenter, an entertainment and media marketing executive in Charleston, S.C., developed similarly named Get Away Grey after also reading about catalase.

"One capsule, taken two times a day directly after a meal, is the best way to metabolize (it) into the bloodstream," he says.

As dietary supplements, these products do not need to register with the Food and Drug Administration or any other agency, nor receive approval before hitting the market. The FDA takes action only if the product later proves to be unsafe.

Although the ads make the science of erasing gray hair — without messy, do-it-yourself hair dyes or expensive trips to the salon — sound as easy as popping a pill, most hair science experts remain skeptical.

"Theoretically, it seems like an interesting idea," says Wilma Bergfeld, senior staff dermatologist at The Cleveland Clinic and a specialist in hair disorders. But she quickly adds that it hasn't been proven yet "in the clinical arena," nor has there been any research on potential health risks.

"We don't know the delivery system, if (the action is being caused by) a derivative of (another) chemical, or how it's absorbed. All those things are unknown," she says.

Paradi Mirmirani, a dermatologist specializing in hair at the Permanente Medical Group in Vallejo, Calif., agrees that that there isn't enough "hard science" to support the notion that the current crop of oral supplements will affect gray hair. "I just don't think we have enough information" to recommend them, she says.

Both Mirmirani and Bergfeld say there's no reason to suspect that these supplements can be harmful, but they also recommend informing your physician before taking them, just as you should with any supplement.

"Check with your doctor to make sure they're harmless to your individual health, and then make sure you're not paying an exorbitant amount of money for it," Mirmirani says.

When it comes to going gray, lifestyle and certain health conditions can play a role, but "overall, it's much more about genetic programming," says Jeffrey Benabio, a dermatologist with Kaiser Permanente in San Diego.

A survey reported last year in the British Journal of Dermatology found that people of African and Hispanic descent had less gray hair than those of Caucasian origin at comparable ages, confirming previously reported data. Men had significantly more gray hair than women 74% of people between the ages of 45 to 65 had gray hair.

While most of the current crop of anti-gray products focus on the role of catalase, L'Oreal says it is looking elsewhere, sponsoring research and publishing papers examining the enzyme TRP-2.

"Its absence in pigment-producing cells called melanocytes is likely linked to progressive graying," spokeswoman Davidowitz said in an e-mail. "Experts in the field confirm that substances mimicking TRP-2 activity might be of value to fight hair graying."

L'Oreal's Bernard is quoted as saying the company's pill would be based on a fruit extract that mimics TRP-2. "You would take it for your whole life, but realistically, we'd encourage people to start using it before their hair goes gray, because we don't think it can reverse the process once it has started," he told the Daily Mail.


A Pill To Prevent Gray Hair - Is It Finally On The Way?

In the past three years, the concept of popping a pill to prevent gray hair has been fast-tracked from fantasyland to almost-reality. First came the groundbreaking British study published by FASEB (the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology) in 2009 exposing the mechanism that governs loss of hair pigment.

Researchers at the University of Bradford in the UK demonstrated how over time, accumulated oxidative stress leads to the overproduction of hydrogen peroxide in the hair follicles. In other words, the hair begins to bleach itself from the inside out. The buildup of hydrogen peroxide begins to block the production of melanin, the pigment that gives hair its blonde, red or brown color.

Underlying this process is a series of complex chemical mechanisms involving the effects of oxidative stress and follicle damage on key enzymes. One is catalase, which is supposed to break up the hydrogen peroxide into water and oxygen so the body can eliminate it. But catalase levels drop as we age, allowing hydrogen peroxide to accumulate unchecked.

Would Emmylou Harris have taken a pill to prevent gray hair? Would you? (photos: public domain . [+] collage: Melanie Haiken)

Two other enzymes, known as MSR A and B, are supposed to stimulate hair follicles to repair the damage, but levels of MSR A and B drop with age as well. Without enough MSR A and B, the body can't produce enough of another enzyme, tyrosinase, which is directly involved in melanin production.

A New Consumer Market: Gray Hair Prevention

All of these enzymes give drugmakers new targets for medications and supplements aimed at boosting levels of catalase, MSR A and B, and tyrosinase. Cue the rush to market.

One such drug has already been announced by L'Oreal, which promises a 2015 market launch. A fruit extract about which little else is known, L'Oreal's product acts on the production of tyrosine-related protein TRP-2. Of course, there's no need to point out that a no-gray-hair pill could make L'Oreal a great deal of money. L'Oreal researcher Bruno Bernard was quoted by the Christian Science Monitor as saying the company already has a "watertight proof of concept" and will be in full production by 2015.

Smaller companies and supplement manufacturers aren't waiting in the wings, though. They're mounting online sales campaigns and putting new products on health food store shelves everyday.

The best known of these, having mounted an impressive viral marketing campaign, is Go Away Grey, manufactured by Rise-N-Shine LLC of New Jersey. Go Away Grey, which has been covered in a plethora of women's magazines and newspapers, contains 5000 IU of catalase and a cocktail of L-tyrosine and tyrosine-boosting plant extracts, with the promise that boosting catalase and tyrosinase levels will prevent graying.

More catalase-based supplements are arriving everyday. Other contenders include Anti-Gray Hair 7050, No More Gray with Catalase, and Anti Grey Pure by Absonutrix.

Do they work? Hard to say. The road is littered with discarded vitamins and minerals that made perfect sense but proved to be digested and excreted without effect. Some experts have suggested that it may be more effective to supplement the minerals such as zinc and selenium that the body uses to produce catalase, MSR A and B, and tyrosinase, rather than take them directly. Spinach, avocados, and liver are rich in catalase, so you could always try adding these to your diet for a more natural approach.

Next Step: Risk Warnings from Docs

Of course, we're talking about important enzymatic reactions here, and doctors immediately reacted to the L'Oreal announcement by cautioning that there may be significant risks to meddling with basic biology in this way. Without a product available from L'Oreal to test, however, it's hard to argue for or against health concerns. One would hope that the anti-gray supplements already on the market have been proven safe. But there's no way of knowing that, either. Supplements are not subject to the same regulatory scrutiny by the FDA that new drugs must undergo.

Don't Throw Away Your Hair Dye Yet

Unfortunately, if you're already gray or quickly getting there, the new pills won't help you much. They have the potential to stop the graying process, but so far no one's suggested any ability to reverse it. In fact, L'Oreal's Bruno Bernard specifically warned that people will likely need to begin taking L'Oreal's new supplement well before (as much as ten years before!) they would expect to begin turning gray to see the full effects.

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Monitor the health of your community here

At Healthfully, we strive to deliver objective content that is accurate and up-to-date. Our team periodically reviews articles in order to ensure content quality. The sources cited below consist of evidence from peer-reviewed journals, prominent medical organizations, academic associations, and government data.

The information contained on this site is for informational purposes only, and should not be used as a substitute for the advice of a professional health care provider. Please check with the appropriate physician regarding health questions and concerns. Although we strive to deliver accurate and up-to-date information, no guarantee to that effect is made.


Question: My husband has been taking cyclosporine for a couple of years. I noticed his gray hair is getting darker in places. He is 56 and been gray since his late 20s early 30s. Is this normal?

Answer: There are reports that tell us about hair darkening caused due to cyclosporine, especially in the psoriasis treatment. So I believe this is normal. If you want to be sure, do remember to mention this when you visit the doctor.

Question: Will being on mycophenolate cause red hair dye to not stay in the hair?

Answer: Has your hair become thinner than before? The information provided so far about mycophenolate mofetil is that it can cause hair loss or thinning. Most times, the thinning of hair will result in it not taking up the dye, so this might be a reason hair dye is not staying in your hair.

The hair may become normal in some time even if you continue the treatment, but it is advised to avoid hair dyes or perms for the first few months as your hair will be weaker than usual.

Question: Pills exist for people to lighten & darken their skin. Are there pills we can take to change our hair color & eye color, that leaves our skin color the same? People in the Soleman Islands have dark skin & blonde hair, I&aposd like to keep my skin dark but have blonde or red hair without using hair dye or bleach.

Answer: Pills to lighten or darken skin? Do you mean the likes of "tanning pills". Tanning pills are not FDA approved. They contain canthaxanthins, a type of color additives used in food substances. Canthaxanthines are not harmful when used in small amounts as present in food additives. But in tanning pills, these are present in large amounts that are harmful to the consumers.

Coming to the next part of your question, there are no pills to change eye color or hair color. Few medicines change the color of your hair and skin and even eye but only as a side effect. To use such drugs with the sole purpose of changing hair color would be totally inappropriate and dangerous.

I would like to add that, medicines are not meant to change the physical appearance of a person. They are just intended to treat or prevent diseases. For changing hair color, a hair dye with perfect care would be always a better option in my opinion.

Question: I have dark blackish-red skin discoloration patches between mouth and chin area. The doctor prescribed Alercet tab (Cetirizine), Icoz tab (Itraconazole), Becadexamin Capsule(multi-vit & multi-mineral capsule) and Limcee+ vit C tab (health supplement). Can it cause hair greying? I am 19 and a half years old, male.

Answer: If I understood your question correctly, you have a fungal-like infection on your chin area and you were prescribed Cetirizine, Itraconazole and vitamin supplements. I found no reported hair greying reactions linked with the use of these drugs. So, you can be assured that these medicines are safe in that matter.

Since you have asked this question, did you see your hair turning grey? Do you suspect these medicines?

If you do then send me an e-mail or ask another question in this section with the details of your symptoms, date of initiating these medicines, date of when you noticed your hair turn grey, and other related things like if you dye your hair and if you are on any hormonal medicines.

Question: Is it safe to get hair colored if on rinvoq?

Answer: Rinvoq (upadacitinib) is a medicine used for rheumatoid arthritis as approved by FDA in 2019. The label for rinvoq does not mention any such dermatological reactions to say that it is not safe to color your hair while you are on it. Since, the drug was approved recently, we do not have sufficient data from trials performed after the approval of this drug.

From the information we have, the drug belongs to a class called JAK inhibitors and drugs of these class are being tested for treating hair loss of some specific types. So, I believe it is safe to color your hair.

Note: If you experience hair thinning or hair loss, please consult your doctor before you color your hair next time.

Question: Does topiramate change hair and/or affect skin? I see changes in hair (coarser, drier, and brittle). I find changes with my skin too (increased wrinkles and laxity). I am wondering if this is because it is a sodium channel blocker and vitamin C is not absorbed as usual, or because the medication dehydrated the body systematically and this reduced water can prohibit the production of hyaluronic acid.

Answer: Hair loss is frequently linked with topiramate. If a drug has the potential to cause hair loss, it means that it can cause the pathologies that lead to it including making your hair brittle and coarser. Some may experience hair loss while others may only go through the changes leading to it.

As for the skin, sodium channel blockers can affect the synthesis of collagen type I and type IV related to vascular structures and skin. Additionally, topiramate dehydrates the body and it is possible that the effects you are seeing on your skin are a result of it.

Question: I take levetiracetam and carbamazepine medicine for my seizures. Can it cause greying hair?

Answer: I could not find any such documented reports of Carbamazepine and Levetiracetam causing hair discoloration. However, both drugs rarely cause hair loss and one report suggest levetiracetam causing skin hyperpigmentation.

To find out a true causal relationship between these drugs and your hair greying I will need to know many more details related to your medicine administration, dosage, date of initiating the medicines in relation to date of you observing grey hair and the likes. Your pharmacist might help you determine the causality and help you report it if it is found to be true.


Biology of epidermal and hair pigmentation in cattle: a mini-review

Coat colours in cattle have been of interest to both breeders and researchers as genes regulating pigmentation not only affect the phenotype but also have economic implications in the event of genetic mutations. The genes controlling pigmentation act as a complex and interact with each other to cause phenotypic and genotypic variations. Pigmentation of coat broadly depends on the ratio of eumelanin and pheomelanin, the two components of melanin. Increase in eumelanin imparts a black coat colour while raise in pheomelanin is responsible for a yellowish or reddish colour. The main enzymes responsible for melanogenesis are regulated by the genes of the tyrosinase family. It is speculated that the wild-type gene present in the ancestral breeds of the present day cattle have more pheomelanin content and that, over time, mutations have introduced more variations leading to many shades. This could have occurred either because of interactions or because of deletions in the responsible genes. The environmental conditions have also contributed to mutations in these genes, helping in the adaptability of the animals to different geographical regions. The switching between the syntheses of melanin components depends on several genes like melanocortin-1receptor gene (MC1r) – also known as melanocyte-stimulating hormone receptor gene (MSHr)-, agouti (A), attractin (Atrn) and mahogunin (Mgrn1). The purpose of this review is to summarize the recent advances in the field of pigment biology and to highlight possible areas of research that may benefit a breeder or a farmer in the selection of animals on the basis of phenotype.


Which types of Foods are best for White Hair Remedies?

You should take the proper foods for white hair prevention. The daily intake of a balanced diet and leaving smoking habits will definitely help you in the prevention of white hair.

The lack of vitamin-B12 complex is the major reason for hair whitening as it increases the possibility for proper melanin pigmentation. So, try to take salmon, tuna, egg, beef, cheese and other nutrient types of foods which contain vitamin-B so much.

Remember that drinking alcohol, too much habituated with caffeine and smoking excessively will increase the possibility of premature white hair.


The myth of the “red hair gene”

Sometimes, genetics seems pretty straightforward. What color is your hair? Brown? Red? Blonde? You must have inherited the brown, red, or blond hair gene, right?

In reality, genetics is rarely simple—even when it comes to something as mundane as hair color. Genes can affect one another in many different ways. But understanding how a trait like hair color is determined can be helpful when reading through your DNA test results.

There are more than 20,000 different genes in your DNA which all work together to make you, you. Typically, people think of one gene giving rise to one trait. But we’ve come to find that very few of our traits work like this. Take hair color for example: there is no single brown, red, or blonde hair gene—it’s actually a whole network of genes that interact with one another to control the production of colorful pigments.

Someone who has black or brown hair is making large amounts of a dark pigment called eumelanin. The production and distribution of this pigment across a hair strand requires multiple steps, each of which involves different genes. To make eumelanin, the amino acid tyrosine has to go through multiple transformations, one of which involves the MC1R gene. This gene produces a protein of the same name which helps direct the chemical reactions. When the MC1R protein is made and active, it pushes the chemical reaction to produce the brown pigment eumelanin. But when it’s not being made or not working properly due to a change in the DNA, a red pigment known as pheomelanin is made. Variants have been found in the MC1R gene which cause less of its protein to be produced and results in build up of pheomelanin instead of eumelanin—and thus red-colored hair.

This is an example of a concept known as epistasis, which literally means “to stop or stand upon.” This term describes a common concept in genetics, which is that some variants can mask the effect of others. It helps to think of this like your commute to work. Let’s say you drive to work and you normally arrive at 8:00 am. To do this, your car has to be able to drive, and there has to be a smooth flow of traffic. Now let’s say there’s an accident on the highway which causes you to be 30 minutes late due to the resulting traffic jam. In this situation, the presence of the accident has changed the time you arrive. Based on this, you would predict that anytime an accident is present, you’ll arrive at 8:30. But, what if your car doesn’t start tomorrow? If that happens, it doesn’t matter whether there’s an accident on the highway—you won’t arrive at 8:00 or 8:30. In other words your car trouble has had an epistatic effect on the highway accident.

Returning to hair color, a variant in the MC1R gene that causes it to totally stop working will have an epistatic effect on most other variants—meaning if the MC1R gene stops working, it doesn’t matter if your body is trying to produce the brown pigment because without MC1R, it will produce a red pigment instead.

The concept of epistasis is important for more than just hair color: Researchers have found that epistatic interactions can affect many traits. For example, some variants have been identified to have an epistatic relationship that can have implications on lung cancer development 1 .

So how does this help you understand your DNA test results? Often times, you’ll see qualifying language in your results that says you are “likely” to have a certain trait. This is because concepts like epistasis, penetrance, and expressivity can all affect whether or not someone has a trait. It’s similar to driving to work where there are many ways for you to get delayed, but generally speaking, the presence of an accident will usually cause you to arrive at a different time. Based on experience, you can determine with a relatively high degree of accuracy what time you’ll get to work each day based on this. In that same way, it’s also possible to use your DNA to determine how likely it is that you will have a specific trait.