Biotin is a form of vitamin B. It aids in breaking down some food particles and converting them into energy for body use. It is also available as a supplement and used for treating hair loss, brittle nails and some other health conditions. Because there is no test to detect its deficiency in the body, you can only rely on symptoms of its lack, which includes the conditions mentioned above.
This is where it gets tricky. Biotin is not stored in the body so once you stop getting a healthy diet; you’ll experience symptoms that indicate its deficiency. The only logical way out is to have as much of it as possible through eating biotin-rich foods.
However, this presents another problem as overdose of the vitamin may be harmful to the body, even though there’s no scientific proof for this yet. This article will take you through foods that are rich in it, alert you on possible side effects and also the right dosage so you can enjoy the benefits of this beauty booster.
Biotin Rich Foods
1. Natural sources
Some of the natural foods that are rich in biotin include:
- Eggs: Heat reduces the effectiveness of biotin and its content in a food. Eggs should strictly be cooked nonetheless as they’re not very healthy when ingested raw. However, you’re encouraged to take other foods raw to reap the full benefits of the biotin in them for a great hair.
- Cheese: Majority of dairy products are rich in biotin
- Sweet potatoes: These contain the highest amount of biotin among vegetables. They help in growing strong hair.
Other natural foods include organ meats like liver and kidney, soybeans, banana, mushrooms (which work best when eaten raw), but butters, cauliflowers and so on.
To gain more from biotin for your hair, incorporate these foods into your diet. Most shampoos and hair treatment creams claim to have biotin in them, however, you should be aware that such claims might only be a marketing ploy.
In the event that you’re not getting enough biotin from your diet, you can turn to supplements for them. They can easily be purchased from pharmacy stores and are prescribed according to age, sex and weight.
There’s the high potency biotin which comes in 5000mcg per vergie softgel enhanced with coconut oil. You can also find the Natrol Biotin Maximum Strength tablets which come in 10,000mcg. There are many others.
Side effects of biotin
Biotin is a nontoxic vitamin. It is water soluble, which means that in the case of an overdose, it can be removed from the body through urine and other body waste.
However, not much is known about biotin compared to most other vitamins. It has been known to interfere with seizure medications and in this case can be fatal. It has been reported to account for some strange results during tests for thyroid.
Also, if a person is experiencing digestive disorders already, it can affect the level of intestinal bacteria. This is a common occurrence as high level of a particular vitamin tends to affect the balance of others in the body. It is therefore advised you consult your doctor before taking biotin supplements. This is mostly to avoid any negative interaction it might have with other medications you are on or might be.
As pointed out earlier, biotin is a water soluble vitamin, so any extra amount is ejected from the body as waste. But in rare cases, low level of vitamin C and B6, insulin production and high blood sugar level can be interpreted as symptoms of biotin overdose.
Therefore, as supplement, it is recommended that adults take between 25 to 30mcg while children take between 8 to 20mcg. The dosage may be increased for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. Please make sure to consult your doctor to be sure you’re on the right track always.