Biotin: The Secret To Healthy Hair

| November 6, 2019

Biotin: The Secret To Healthy Hair

| November 6, 2019
Biotin: The Secret To Healthy Hair
Author

By Chelsea De Beer

Taking of your hair, skin, and nails is paramount for living a healthy lifestyle and looking good. Keep in mind, though, that without the proper vitamins and minerals in your diet, it won’t be possible.

Your body needs vitamins like B7, also known as Biotin, to create proteins and amino acids we need to survive. We cannot synthesize Biotin ourselves, so we have to make sure we eat enough Biotin-rich foods.

We’ve summarized what you need to know about Biotin in the easy-to-follow guide below.

Hair Alopecia

What Is Biotin

Biotin is an essential B-complex vitamin often referred to as Vitamin B7 or Vitamin H. An adult needs at least 30mcg of Biotin per day, while clinicians recommend at least 35mcg per day for breastfeeding moms.

It is water-soluble, so the body cannot store it. Instead, excess Biotin gets flushed out of the body through urination. For this reason, we need to make sure we are taking in this vitamin on a daily basis to replenish supplies in the body.

Vitamin Biotin

Health Benefits

We need Biotin for many systems in the body, including:

1. The Metabolism

Our bodies must have Biotin to create free fatty acids from triglyceride molecules. If triglycerides are not broken down, they can build up in the bloodstream.

This condition can lead to high blood lipid levels and even cardiovascular disease.

These free fatty acids, play several key roles in the body. These include regulating oxygen use, gut health support, energy production, and fat storage. If glucose isn’t available for energy the body uses these fatty acids to fuel the cells instead.

We call this metabolic switch-up “being in ketosis”.

2. Protein Synthesis For Healthy Hair

Proteins and their amino-acids are the building blocks of our cells. Without Biotin, cells cannot heal and grow. One of the tissues that suffers without enough protein is the derma papilla, or the scalp.

To grow thick, shiny hair, your body needs a healthy keratin infrastructure. Keratin is a protein that makes up hair, nails and the outer layer of the skin. It also protects epithelial cells inside your body from damage and stress.

Without Biotin, the body cannot synthesize keratin proteins, leading to brittle, sparse hair.

In recent years, researchers have become interested in studying Biotin’s hair-restoring capabilities. Corroborating evidence is still lacking in some areas. But, several reputable studies have suggested there is great value in taking Biotin.

One study published in 2012 examined Biotin’s effect on hair loss in women. They found that, when compared to a placebo, a daily oral Biotin supplement helped hair to grow.

The baseline number of terminal (thicker) hairs in Biotin-treated subjects was 271.0. After 90 days, the number of hairs increased to 571 (65.7), and 609.6 (66.6) after 180 days. Those subjects who received the placebo exhibited no change in hair thickness.

3. Glucogenesis

Gluconeogenesis is a way that our bodies protect themselves against low blood sugar. After about 8 hours of not consuming any food, the body’s metabolism creates its own glucose.

The body makes carbohydrates from other carbon-based substrates like proteins and lipids. Without Biotin, the glucogenic process doesn’t work as it should. This leaves you at risk of developing hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).

Biotin has also shown some promise in treating other health concerns. These include the treatment of inflammation, cholesterol regulation, and diabetic blood sugar control.

Vitamin

Where Biotin Comes From

You can get Biotin through the foods you eat, the supplements you take or the hair products you use. Examples of foods containing Biotin include:

  • Egg Yolks
  • Liver, Kidneys and Other Organ Meats
  • Yeast (Brewers and Nutritional Yeasts)
  • Nuts (Almonds, Pecans, Walnuts, and Peanuts)
  • Seeds
  • Cauliflower
  • Avocados
Biotin Products

Precautions and Interactions

Because Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin, leftovers are flush out when you urinate. This makes overdosing close to impossible. Of course, it’s always best to consult with your doctor beforehand.

Biotin has no observable interactions with herbal medicines or other supplements. This claim comes from current research and the Federal Drug Administration.

Key Takeaways:

Biotin is a vital part of maintaining hair health, metabolic function and more. Some studies suggest that increasing Biotin intake boosts hair thickness and growth.

This means a non-surgical solution for hair loss is finally in the works. Much more research is yet to come, but the scientific world is already abuzz with innovation.

New ways to use Biotin to improve human lives are being developed as you read this. We’ll keep you posted!

References

  1. John, J. J., & Lipner, S. R. (2019). Consumer Perception of Biotin Supplementation. Journal of Cutaneous Medicine and Surgeryhttps://doi.org/10.1177/1203475419871046
  2. Lipner, S. (2018). Rethinking biotin therapy for hair, nail, and skin disorders. Journal Of The American Academy Of Dermatology78(6), 1236-1238. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17763607
  3. Walth, C., Wessman, L., Wipf, A., Carina, A., Hordinsky, M., & Farah, R. (2018). Response to: “Rethinking biotin therapy for hair, nail, and skin disorders”. Journal Of The American Academy Of Dermatology79(6), e121-e124. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2018.07.055
  4. Patel, D., Swink, S., & Castelo-Soccio, L. (2017). A Review of the Use of Biotin for Hair Loss. Skin Appendage Disorders3(3), 166-169. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28879195
  5. Ablon, G. (2015). A 3-Month, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study Evaluating the Ability of an Extra-Strength Marine Protein Supplement to Promote Hair Growth and Decrease Shedding in Women with Self-Perceived Thinning Hair. Dermatology Research And Practice2015, 1-8. http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/841570
  6. Combs GF, Jr. Biotin. In: Combs GF, Jr., ed. The vitamins: fundamental aspects in nutrition and health. Third ed. Burlington, MA: Elsevier Academic Press; 2008:331-44. https://www.elsevier.com/books/the-vitamins/combs-jr/978-0-12-802965-7
  7. Finglas, P. (2000). Dietary Reference intakes for thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, folate, vitamin B12, pantothenic acid, biotin and choline. Trends In Food Science & Technology11(8), 296-297. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/248485476_Dietary_Reference_intakes_for_thiamin_riboflavin_niacin_vitamin_B_6_folate_vitamin_B_12_pantothenic_acid_biotin_and_choline
Author

By Chelsea De Beer

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