Biotin deficiency is quite rare is easily avoided with a healthy diet. The benefits of biotin extend to improving the health of hair, skin and nails, and nerve tissue. Vitamin B7 biotin, also known as vitamin H, is water-soluble vitamin, not able to be stored by the body, needing to be regularly replenished through the diet to avoid deficiency symptoms.
Side Effects of Biotin
Biotin is a coenzyme in the metabolism of proteins and fats, the formation of fatty acids and glycogen, and the process of releasing energy from food.
It also helps maintain even blood sugar levels and assists the transfer of carbon dioxide. Biotin is vital for the formation of the nucleic acids, RNA and DNA, and hence is essential for cell growth and replication.
The benefits of biotin are especially important for healthy hair, skin, and nails. It is also needed for healthy nerve tissue, bone marrow, and sweat glands, and can help reduce muscle pains.
Biotin benefits glucose processing enzymes to manage blood sugar levels, and has been used in large doses to treat the degenerative nerve disease, diabetic neuropathy caused by high blood sugar.
It improves the body’s utilization of fatty acids, making the scalp less greasy and improving hair health. Biotin is often included in shampoos and hair conditioners because it helps to keep hair healthy and repairs damaged hair.
Benefits of biotin in the diet is sometimes suggested for severe hair loss (alopecia). Biotin benefits may also help return hair to its original color. There are no known dangerous biotin side effects.
Factors that may increase biotin deficiency include alcohol consumption, and regular consumption raw eggs because the avidin in raw eggs binds to biotin, preventing it being absorbed.
Biotin deficiency is rare but can lead to hair loss (alopecia), loss of appetite, poor fat metabolism, anorexia, nausea, dry scaly skin, high cholesterol, swollen tongue, fatigue, and depression.
Recommended dietary allowance of biotin dosage is 300 mcg (minimum daily dose to ward off serious deficiency of biotin), although up to 5000 mcg biotin dosage is sometimes used in vitamin supplements .
Because any excesses are readily excreted, there normally no toxic biotin side effects, however there may be an increased chance of stimulating acne and allergies and there may be some medicines which could react with high levels of biotin.
Here are examples of where to find biotin foods and good foods with biotin:
Animal biotin foods : Brewer’s yeast, liver, lean meats, cheese, milk, egg yolk, poultry, fish.
Plant foods with biotin : Spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, sweet potatoes, brown rice, mushrooms, nuts, soybeans, sunflower seeds.
Most healthy diets will therefore be nutritional enough to avoid biotin deficiency.