The Science Behind Horse Hair Analysis

The Science Behind HHA

Hair tissue mineral analysis is considered a standard test used around the world for the biological monitoring of trace elements and toxic metals in humans and animals. Hair, like all other body tissues, contains minerals that are deposited as the hair grows.

Several factors combine to make Horse Hair Analysis® the best mineral test in the industry! Key to the success of the HHA program is the laboratory, which uses only the most advanced and sophisticated instrumentation available today. The hair samples are tested with the Perkin Elmer Elan 9000 ICP Mass Spectrometer to assess mineral levels in milligram percent (mg%).

This demonstrates the number of milligrams of the mineral/metal present in 100 milliliters of solution. The result is an extremely accurate reading of your horses’ biochemistry during the last 90 days.

The hair is not washed (chemically rinsed) at the lab. Studies have proven that laboratories who do not wash the hair showed superb reliability. Washing hair samples has been revealed to erratically leach the water-soluble elements, which creates much less accurate results.

The laboratory has stringent quality control procedures, including controls which are tested at the beginning, middle and end of every batch of hair samples to insure the accuracy of the results. Also, any reading that is out of a normally expected range is retested before laboratory results are sent out.

Horse Hair Analysis® is more accurate than blood testing

Traditionally mineral levels have always been evaluated via blood tests. Using blood testing to evaluate mineral levels often leads to inaccurate results due to the horse’s tremendously variable food and water intake throughout the day. The level of mineral present in the blood stream is greatly dependent on what time of the day the blood is drawn, compared to what time you feed your horse his/her feed and supplements. Blood work is considered an immediate snapshot at that precise moment.

Also, a particular mineral may be found in the blood stream at the time of testing, but it may not go to the target tissue, to be uptaken and utilized as it is provided in a bio-unavailable form. It may simply be in the blood stream awaiting excretion via the liver or kidneys.

Horse Hair Analysis® testing, on the other hand, evaluates the last 90 day average of the vitamins and minerals that actually made it into the tissues. When vitamins, minerals and metals are found in the hair it means that these nutrients were not only digested, absorbed, metabolized and utilized, but it is also made it through to the hair. This provides you with an extremely accurate reading of your horses’ biochemistry.


We have been using the Horse Hair Analysis for the past 4 years on multiple horses and have seen great results. I love that HHA takes the guessing out of what you think your horse needs. The science behind Horse Hair Analysis tells you exactly where your horse's mineral and metal levels are at. The graphs are also easy to read and understand. 

My horse, Chili has been feeling happy and healthy with the help of his HHA Personal Supplement. He is running at a professional level and I know his customized supplement can help keep him at the top.
—Brooke Wills