Biotin 101 – Everything You Need To Know

People all around the world are incorporating biotin into their lives because it offers many benefits. Even though it is considered a miracle vitamin by many, people are unaware of what it exactly is. If you are planning on starting biotin supplements or simply want to know more about it, you have come to the right place.

Biotin for nails

What Is Biotin And Why Do You Need It?

Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin of the B7 category. It normally exists in small quantities in the food we eat. Since it is water soluble, it is metabolized in the body rather than being stored. Biotin is essential as it speeds up the metabolism and helps the body process food more efficiently. In case the body cannot meet its biotin requirements from food, supplements are needed.

Biotin supplements has countless benefits, some of which are as follows:

All these benefits and more are the reason to start taking biotin supplements sooner than later.

Signs of Biotin Deficiency

Biotin deficiency can be caused in our bodies due to old age, disease or simply poor eating habits. Either way, biotin is essential and therefore should be replenished in case of deficiency. Here are some symptoms that may point towards biotin deficiency:

Since these symptoms can be caused by some other factors as well, it is important to get your biotin levels tested before you start taking supplements.

Types of Biotin Supplements

The kinds of biotin supplements vary depending on their usage. Most people can get regular multivitamins or specific biotin supplements for overall health benefits. On the other hand, certain supplements are available for specific purposes.

Supplements also exist to specifically treat hair loss, unhealthy skin, brittle nails, etc. so it depends on what your requirements are.

How Much Should You Take?

Excess of everything is bad. The same goes for biotin as well. It is important to take sufficient amount of biotin, but the levels should not exceed a certain limit. Many people get enthusiastic to up their intake in order to quickly reap the benefits, but that is actually dangerous. You should consult your doctor before using biotin supplements so they can guide you regarding the quantities.

In adults, the recommended intake of biotin is 30mcg, and for women who breastfeed their child, it increases to 35mcg. If women take regular biotin supplements during pregnancy, the babies develop much healthier skin and hair.

For babies under one year of age, 7mcg is recommended and eight mcg for children between ages 1 & 3. 12 mcg and 20mcg for children between ages 4-8 and early teens respectively. From early teenage till adulthood, 25mcg is considered sufficient.

If you want to take biotin specifically for improving the health of your hair and skin, a daily intake of 1000mcg would be ideal.

What Are The Sources Of Biotin?

Biotin is present in very small quantities in most of the things we eat. It is always better to eat biotin-rich foods rather than opting for supplements. Here are some foods that can supply a good amount of biotin:

It should be noted that since biotin is a water-soluble vitamin, it needs a lot of water to be absorbed in the body. To ensure that your body is making use of all the biotin you are supplying it, make sure you drink plenty of water. At least eight glasses a day is needed to absorb all the biotin needed for daily requirements.

Side Effects

Too little or too much biotin levels in the body can cause damage. Following are some side effects that you should be aware of:

Biotin is needed by our bodies to function properly. It also aids in weight loss by speeding up the metabolism. Biotin also increases resistance against diseases. Despite all that, it also has some side effects. Therefore, you should always consult your doctor before starting a course of biotin supplement.