Saw palmetto is an herbal extract that is obtained from the fruits of the plants named ‘Serosa repens’ which is basically a short palm dwelling in Georgia and Florida of North America. The black berries of Serosa repens plant is highly rich in fatty acids and phytosterols which are harnessed in the herbal extract to use it for medical purposes. The most popular use of Saw palmetto is for treatment of urinary and reproductive problems.
Saw palmetto is also gaining popularity as an herbal alternative for treatment of hair loss and baldness in males which is also called as androgenic alopecia or male pattern baldness. In fact saw palmetto is also effective to combat hair loss in women also which is technically described as female pattern baldness.
The symptoms of hair loss often start with receding of hairs and then the hairs are lost greatest on the top and temples leaving the hairs on the back almost unaffected.
The working principle of this herb is not an established one but one believes that is helps to reduce the hair loss by lessening the amount of DHT hormone in the body. Saw palmetto extract is believed to block an enzyme named 5-alpha reductase which is primarily responsible for conversion of the testosterone hormone to another form DHT which is another form of the hormone.
This will in turn cause the reduction of this hormone both in the body as well in the hair follicles and thereby control the loss of hairs. Another presumption is that saw palmetto is capable to interfere in the mechanism of DHT binding to the androgenic receptor and hence prevent the hair loss to a significant level.
Saw palmetto herb usage has also some associated side effects like vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, depression and high blood pressure. Problems like erectile dysfunction, breast tenderness and breathing difficulties have also seen to surface as a result of use of Saw palmetto.
It is always recommended that you take medical help while using this herb and people who have problem of high blood pressure, bleeding problems or hormone sensitive conditions should not use this herbal extract. This herb is also restricted for use in pregnant or lactating mothers.