Biotin is a member of the B vitamin family and is also known as vitamin B7. Biotin helps support the metabolism of carbohydrates, protein and fat for cellular energy production. It also may help support healthy hair, skin and nails in those that are biotin deficient.
It is important for energy production. For example, several enzymes need it to function properly.
These enzymes are involved in carb, fat and protein metabolism. They initiate critical steps in the metabolic processes of these nutrients.
Biotin plays a role in:
- Gluconeogenesis: This metabolic pathway enables glucose production from sources other than carbs, such as amino acids. Biotin-containing enzymes help initiate this process.
- Fatty acid synthesis: Biotin assists enzymes that activate reactions important for the production of fatty acids.
- The breakdown of amino acids: Biotin-containing enzymes are involved in the metabolism of several important amino acids, including leucine.
Is biotin a vitamin?
Yes. Biotin belongs to the family of B vitamins and is also known as vitamin B7.
What Foods Provide Biotin?
Biotin is found in a number of foods including but not limited to whole grains, egg yolks, walnuts, tomatoes, carrots, avocado’s, and leafy greens.
Does biotin cause hair and nail growth?
Biotin has not been proven to cause the growth of hair or nails. However, it may help support healthy hair, skin, and nails for those that are deficient in biotin.
How much biotin is safe to take daily?
At this time, there is no evidence of biotin toxicity when taken as a nutritional supplement in humans and so there is no determined tolerable upper intake level (UL). The Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine recommends a minimum of 30 micrograms (mcg) of biotin per day for males and females ages 19 and older. As much as 5000 mcg of biotin per day is considered safe, although it is advisable to consult a health care professional before using doses above 2,500 mcg.