Taking Biotin Supplements For Hair Loss & Thinning
Biotin, also known as vitamin B7, is an ingredient in many food sources and dietary supplements that can help to support healthy hair growth. While its benefits are largely based on theory rather than proven by scientific evidence, there’s still reason to believe it can benefit one’s hair.
What is Biotin?
Biotin, also known as Vitamin B7, is a water-soluble vitamin that helps support normal metabolic functioning (1). It contributes to the maintenance of healthy skin, hair, and nails. Biotin is found in various food types, such as nuts, eggs, meat, and dairy products. Some people may wish to supplement their biotin levels by taking certain multivitamins or specific biotin supplements. Though most individuals can obtain the required amount from their diets alone, those with inadequate dietary intake or an altered absorption may benefit from additional supplementation.
How does Biotin Benefit Hair?
Biotin is essential for the growth and maintenance of healthy hair. Biotin can help make the hair appear shinier, thicker, and less brittle when taken in its recommended dosage. This is because Biotin improves how quickly new cells are produced, preventing the natural thinning of the hair strands and improving elasticity to strengthen existing strands (2). Many people find that it stimulates stronger and fuller-looking hair faster than traditional products, especially since Biotin supplements help with a faster turnover of scalp cells. In addition, Biotin restores overall moisture retention, which allows natural oils to nourish hair more effectively while combatting dryness due to styling and other treatments. For those who wish to improve the appearance and health of their hair, Biotin can be an important part of a balanced regimen.
Benefits of Biotin for Hair Growth
Stimulates Hair Growth
Biotin helps the body convert food into energy, strengthens nails, and increases hair elasticity. It can be used to stimulate hair growth especially when combined with other Vitamins like Vitamins A and C.
It helps to support the development of healthy cell membranes in the scalp and encourages the production of fatty acids, which are believed to be important for healthy hair follicles. This leads to stronger, longer hair that is less prone to breakage. Additionally, Biotin helps keep skin moisturised and elastic to better protect against damage caused by styling products or heat treatments (3).
Biotin also assists in producing keratin proteins which act as a building block for your hair strands. As these proteins build up over time, they help protect from environmental factors such as sun exposure and wind damage. Additionally, they bind with other proteins in the scalp to help keep the follicles healthy and promote hair growth.
To get the full benefits of Biotin in stimulating hair growth, it is best taken in supplement form as part of a balanced diet. Foods especially high in Biotin include salmon, eggs, organ meats, legumes, nuts, and seeds. It is also often added to multivitamins and can be found in many shampoos and conditioners. Regardless of how you choose to take it, it may benefit your hair and overall health. So if you’re looking for a natural way to support healthy hair growth and nourish your scalp from within, consider adding Biotin to your daily regimen.
Strengthens & Thickens Hair
Studies have found that taking just 2.5mg of Biotin daily can significantly increase hair strands’ strength and thickness. This dose level also produced faster growth rates than not supplementing with it at all. Additionally, Biotin can help to nourish hair and the scalp, reducing shedding and breakage and improving overall hair texture.
Risks of Taking Too Much Biotin
It’s important to note that taking too much Biotin can result in a variety of health risks. Excessive amounts of Biotin can lead to an imbalance in the body’s other B vitamins and cause problems such as skin rashes, nausea, fatigue, and depression. Additionally, too much Biotin may interfere with certain laboratory tests by giving false results, which could result in misdiagnosis or even treatments that are not required. To ensure proper dosage and avoid potential side effects, it is important to speak with a healthcare professional before taking any supplements containing Biotin.
The most common risk associated with taking too much Biotin is an increased risk of developing diabetes complications. Too much Biotin has been linked to decreased insulin sensitivity and an increase in blood sugar levels, which can lead to diabetes or increase existing symptoms of pre-diabetes. Biotin can also interfere with certain medications, such as anticonvulsants and Levodopa, commonly used to treat Parkinson’s disease. Lastly, Biotin has been found to reduce levels of Vitamin B6, which is important for proper nerve function and healthy skin. Taking too much Biotin can lead to nerve damage and skin disorders if not monitored carefully.
Can a pregnant woman take Biotin for hair?
Biotin is water-soluble, meaning it dissolves in water, and any excess amounts that are not used by the body will be excreted through urine rather than stored in the body. This makes it a safe supplement for pregnant women, as there is no risk of buildup or toxicity. (4)
Biotin is can be useful for hair growth because it is used in the production of proteins that make up each strand of hair. In addition to being great for growing new strands, Biotin helps thicken and lengthen existing hair. This vitamin can be found in many foods, such as leafy greens, nuts, and eggs, but sometimes it’s necessary to take a supplement to get enough Biotin. It is important to consult your doctor to get professional suggestions for biotin according to your health condition.
- Bistas KG;Tadi P. Biotin [Internet]. 2022 [cited 2023 Jan 26]. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32119380/
- Patel DP, Swink SM, Castelo-Soccio L. A Review of the Use of Biotin for Hair Loss. Skin Appendage Disorders [Internet]. 2017 [cited 2023 Jan 26];3(3):166–9. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28879195/
- Şen O, Türkçapar AG. Hair Loss After Sleeve Gastrectomy and Effect of Biotin Supplements. Journal of Laparoendoscopic & Advanced Surgical Techniques [Internet]. 2021 Mar 1 [cited 2023 Jan 26];31(3):296–300. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32762597/
- Perry CA, West AA, Gayle A, Lucas LK, Yan J, Jiang X, et al. Pregnancy and Lactation Alter Biomarkers of Biotin Metabolism in Women Consuming a Controlled Diet. The Journal of Nutrition [Internet]. 2014 Aug 13 [cited 2023 Jan 26];144(12):1977–84. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4230210/
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