Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin that's part of the vitamin B family. It is also known as vitamin H.
Your body needs biotin to turn nutrients into energy production and help maintain the health of your hair and nails.
Though deficiency is rare, those who are not getting enough biotin that their body needs can experience hair loss, hair thinning, low energy, or a skin rash.
Read more below on why adding biotin to your diet and from supplements can increase hair growth, nail strength, boost energy, and for other benefits.
The Research: Biotin and Hair Growth
Keratin is the basic protein found in your hair, skin, and nails. The research is clear that biotin improves your body’s levels of keratin.
While research on the effects of biotin alone for hair growth is limited, studies have shown that biotin, when paired with other supplements such as collagen or silica, offers benefits in hair thickening, hair growth, and hair loss reversal.
A 2015 study found that women with thinning hair who took a marine collagen protein supplement that also contained biotin twice a day for 90 days experienced less hair loss and hair shedding in comparison to those who took a placebo. The study also revealed that the women who took the supplement experienced a significant amount of hair growth in the areas affected by hair loss.
A similar study in 2012 revealed the same results for those who also took a biotin supplement for both 90 and 180 days.
Recommended Daily Intake
Because biotin deficiency is rare, the FDA does not recommend a dietary allowance. This can be based on a persons age, sex, and overall, health.
Experts recommend the following dosage:
– Individuals 10 years and older: Between 30 and 100 mcg per day
– Birth to 3 years: 10 to 20 micrograms (mcg)
– Ages 4 to 6 years: 25 mcg
– Ages 7 to 10 years: 30 mcg
– People who are pregnant or breastfeeding may need higher levels of biotin
To find the best dosage for you, follow the guidelines recommended on your supplement, or talk to a specialist. This will help provide guidance with the best dosage for maximum benefits. In most cases, you can fulfill your body’s needed biotin intake through a biotin supplement.
Be mindful not to take too high of a dosage since taking too much biotin can possibly lead to acne – we recommend steering clear from products that contain more than 5,000 mcg of biotin.
Biotin For Your Diet: Biotin Rich Foods
In some cases, you can achieve the daily recommended amount of biotin from the food you eat. For those fighting hair loss and hair thinning, an increased biotin intake is needed. This can be achieved through biotin supplements or through biotin-rich foods in your diet.
Biotin rich foods include:
– Organ meats like liver or kidney
– Egg yolk
– Nuts, such as almonds, peanuts, and walnuts
– Soybeans and other legumes
– Whole grains
– Heat can reduce biotin’s efficacy, so opt for raw or minimally processed dishes
The amount of biotin in food can vary from food to food, so make sure to read the nutritional information whenever possible when hoping to implement more biotin rich foods into your diet.
Also know that sometimes, getting biotin from your diet isn't enough for a boost in hair growth. Opt for biotin supplements and vitamins if you're trying to get results with hair loss and hair growth.
For those who do not wish to focus heavily on their diet to get enough biotin or those who are looking to up their dosage for u hair benefits, biotin supplements are the best option.
Biotin supplements can be found over the counter in pills or capsules, and powder form.
For the best results, biotin supplements combined with other forms of vitamins, minerals and supplements, such as collagen or silica, have shown to be the most effective.
Though the FDA regulates dietary supplements, it’s important to read the ingredients in order to ensure that it is premium and sustainably sourced, like Wholy Dose biotin supplements that include premium collagen, biotin and silica.
In most cases, biotin supplements will not cause negative effects, but minor side effects can be possible:
In the rare cases above, you may be able to reduce the side effects by taking your supplement with food.
In any case, follow the dosage information on the label of your supplements unless your doctor instructs otherwise.
Biotin and Other Benefits
Aside from hair growth, botin has many other benefits.
Biotin is one of several B vitamins that supports a healthy metabolism. Biotin converts glucose from carbs into energy, and also aids in amino acids carrying out normal functions in the body.
Other benefits of biotin include:
– Reduce inflammation
– Improve cognitive function
– Help lower blood sugar for those with diabetes
– Increase HDL cholesterol and decrease LDL cholesterol
– Strengthen nail growth
– Increase energy levels
Other Risks and Warnings
Adding biotin-rich foods to your diet will not carry any risks, and the side effects for biotin supplements do not pose major health concerns either.
Biotin does not have any known interactions, however, if taking other forms of medication, confirm with your doctor before implementing a supplement of any kind. In this case, your doctor can also help provide information regarding proper dosage.
Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin, so any extra biotin that your body does not need will not be absorbed and will flush out through your urine. This makes the possibility of an overdose highly unlikely.
For those who develop an unusual skin rash after increasing biotin intake, limit your intake entirely and see a health care provider.
How Long Until Results?
For best and noticeable results, biotin supplementation must be taken daily for several weeks to a few months before seeing results.
When will your hair grow from taking biotin supplements? It usually takes 1-2 months to start seeing new hair growth, with an increase overtime when taken consistently. Consistency is key here.
For biotin supplements, it is important to take them daily. These studies from 2012 and 2015 found that results can be seen in as little as 90 days. Results include increased growth and shine, with higher dose amounts showing greater results.
For those seeking to see benefits through their diet alone, you must eat several biotin-rich foods on a daily basis to make a noticeable difference.
For those experiencing hair thinning, balding, and hair loss, biotin can assist in hair growth. Research shows that increased biotin intake can improve overall hair quality, including thickness and shine.
Though you may be getting enough biotin from your diet, biotin supplements are the best choice when seeking noticeable results in your hair for hair growth, thickness, and shine.