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Biotin (Not just) for skin and hair

Biotin – also known as Vitamin B7 or Vitamin H - contributes to countless biological processes within the human body. These include amongst other things the energy metabolism, cell functions, the nervous system and the growth of skin, hair and nails.

As a water-soluble vitamin, biotin belongs to the B vitamin complex, and as such cannot be produced in sufficient quantities by the body itself; therefore it has to be absorbed through nutrition. The German Society for Nutrition (DGE, https://www.dge.de/wissenschaft/referenzwerte/biotin/) states the values for an appropriate supply of biotin as being approximately 5 – 10 µg/day for infants, 10 – 35 µg/day for children and 30 – 60 µg/day for teenagers and adults.

Risk groups for biotin deficiency

According to the DGE, it is not necessary for women to increase their biotin supply during pregnancy and breast-feeding, and yet pregnant women are included in the risk group for biotin deficiency occurrence. Permanent diets, longer-term intake of antibiotics and excessive alcohol consumption may also cause biotin deficiencies. Otherwise, only those people are affected by a biotin deficiency who have been born with a biotin-processing disorder.

Symptoms in case of biotin deficiency

Various symptoms can indicate a biotin deficiency. The most obvious of these are skin disorders, changes in hair colour and increased hair loss, and brittle nails. But also consistent fatigue, loss of appetite, muscular pain or nausea and an increased proneness to infection may be signs of a biotin deficiency. If you suspect that you have a biotin deficiency, please speak to your doctor, in order to coordinate further procedures and possible - also high-dosage - substitution with biotin. In normal cases, however, the daily biotin requirements can be easily covered via a balanced diet, as numerous foodstuffs have a high biotin content.

Foodstuffs with a high biotin content

  • Liver
  • Yeast
  • Eggs
  • Soy
  • Oats
  • Walnuts

In addition, many grain products as well as meat, milk and various fruit and vegetables contain sufficient quantities of biotin to easily reach the daily requirements generally needed. According to the latest research, the risk of an overdose with biotin does not exist.

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