Biotin, or vitamin H, is a water-soluble vitamin that is considered part of the B complex. Biotin is necessary for the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, and amino acids. Biotin can be obtained from a variety of foods including soybeans and other legumes, egg yolks, nuts, and organ meats. It is also produced naturally in the body by intestinal bacteria.
Low biotin levels have been linked to the occurrence of eczema, dermatitis, and other skin conditions. Common symptoms of deficiency include dry skin, fungal infections, mild depression, generalized aches and pain, nausea, and vomiting. Supplementation with biotin has been found to prevent hair loss, premature graying, cradle cap, and brittle nails.
Excessive consumption of alcohol, refined foods, egg whites, and long-term antibiotic usage can deplete the body’s biotin levels. Egg whites are a problem because they contain the protein avidin that inhibits biotin absorption. This may be of importance to dieters who favor the use of egg-white omelets in an attempt to reduce calorie intake. Epileptics requiring anticonvulsive medication are also susceptible to biotin deficiencies, as are alcoholics. Both groups would benefit from increased biotin supplementation.
The body requires regular daily intake of biotin, which is water soluble. Excess amounts are harmless and excreted in the urine. No toxicity or side effects have been reported.
Suggested Use: As a dietary supplement, adults take one (1) capsule daily, or as directed by a health care professional. Store in a cool, dry place and away from direct light.