With that said, Hirsana Capsules for Skin, Hair, and Nails ($30 for 30 capsules or $72 for 90 capsules; HirsanaUsa.com ) promise to provide more lustrous skin, thicker hair, and healthier nails with just three months’ of two-capsules-daily use, followed by one capsule per day thereafter. The company asserts that the supplement is suitable for long-term use.
“Does It Work?” | Ingredient Analysis
The main ingredient in each 200-mg Hirsana Capsule is 59.7% golden millet oil. According to this article by GeneCampaign.org, golden millet oil is genetically engineered from two lines of high-nutrition pearl millet bred from Zambia as a part of a project by the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi Arid Tropics (ICRISAT). The chief purpose of golden millet oil is to deliver very high concentrations of beta-carotene, a lipid antioxidant. Although other antioxidants have been shown to be chemopreventative and/or anticarcinogenic, it was found by a study inThe New England Journal of Medicine that beta-carotene does not prevent against both basal-cell and squamous-cell skin cancers, and further established in a study in The Lancet that supplementation with beta-carotene does not help to prevent or treat skin cancer.
Therefore, given that beta-carotene is a proven in vivo precursor of vitamin A, it is very plausible that daily supplementation of beta-carotene could lead to some (or all) of the benefits provided by vitamin A, including prevention of collagen loss, stimulation of collagen production, and increased cellular turnover rates. In fact, daily supplementation of beta-carotene in the prescription treatment Lumitene® has been found to be effective in treating the symptoms of erythropoietic protoporphyria, a rare inherited genetic disorder of porphyrin-heme metabolism that often results in photosensitivity (painful skin sensitivity to sunlight), as well as gallstones and liver dysfunction. However, more research needs to be done before the benefits of golden millet oil supplementation can be deemed conclusive.
Other ingredients in Hirsana Capsules include 100% of the FDA Daily Value of vitamin E (primarily an antioxidant), vitamin B6, thiamin, riboflavin, and biotin, as well as 50% of pantothenic acid and zinc. Of these, vitamin E and biotin supplements have been shown to have the most conclusive evidence supporting benefits for the hair, skin, and nails.
According to the NIH, beta-carotene supplementation in combination with selenium (not in Hirsana), vitamin C, and vitamin E may also decrease the effectiveness of a combination of simvastatin (Zocor®) and niacin. Talk to your physician if you have any concerns.
When taking any new supplement, I also like to sign up for a nutritional database so I can make sure I am not receiving any toxic levels of any vitamin from my combined supplement and food intake. Free services are available at CalorieCounter.com or FitDay.com.
As always, talk to your physician before starting this or any other supplement.
Personal Use & Overall Opinions
After using the capsules for two weeks, I have noticed that my nails seem to have grown faster, but it will be awhile before I can honestly tell a difference in my hair (it’s pretty long) or my skin (it’s already very ‘antioxidized’ and moisturized!). One caveat: the capsules do leave a bit of a grainy, cereal-like aftertaste (it’s hard to explain), so I recommend taking them with food.
I personally like combining oral supplements and topical ingredients for skin care. And I like Hirsana Capsules for Skin, Hair, and Nails due to their very high concentration of golden millet oil (which in turn provides a high concentration of beta carotene) and the fact that they provide 100% of the daily value of antioxidant vitamin E and biotin, which have both been shown to have benefits for the skin, hair, and nails when ingested via supplement. While I feel as though more research needs to be done before the benefits of golden millet oil can be deemed conclusive, I still like this product, and will continue to use it for a while. Product Rating: 7/9 (= 7.8/10). (High concentration of proven-effective ingredients: 2.5/3. Value for the money: 2/3. New technology or original formulation: 2.5/3. Sunscreen: 0/0 (N/A).)