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Diet and Nutrition 2023

Biotin: what é, what it is for and where to find it

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Biotin: what é, what it is for and where to find it
Biotin: what é, what it is for and where to find it
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Biotin, also known as vitamin H or vitamin B7, is a water-soluble vitamin essential for the proper functioning of the body, as it is related to the production of glycogen and proteins, being important to maintain skin he alth and hair, guaranteeing energy in the cells and maintaining the production of proteins.

This vitamin can be found naturally in foods such as almonds, hazelnuts and whole grains, as well as a supplement in the form of capsules, which can be indicated by the doctor or nutritionist when it is not possible to obtain the necessary amount of biotin for good functioning of the body through food.

What is it for

Biotin is an essential vitamin for the proper functioning of cells, because it is related to the formation of amino acids, nucleic acids, glycogen and blood cells. Thus, biotin serves to:

  • Ensure the energy in the cells, as it is essential for the production of glycogen, which also helps to regulate the levels of glucose circulating in the blood and, consequently, to prevent or control diabetes;
  • Maintain adequate protein production, as it helps in the formation of amino acids, which are the protein-forming units;
  • Strengthening nails and hair, as it guarantees the formation of proteins that are essential for the he alth of nails and hair;
  • Promote skin he alth, as in addition to promoting hydration, it ensures the formation of collagen and keratin by the body, which is a fundamental protein to ensure skin elasticity and resistance;
  • Increase intestinal reabsorption and use of vitamins B12, B5 and folic acid, helping to maintain the proper functioning of the body;
  • Help in the formation of blood cells, especially lymphocytes and antibodies.

In addition, biotin can also help maintain the he alth of the nervous system, aid in the treatment of acne and alopecia, and control cholesterol levels.

Where to find biotin

The following table shows the amount of biotin per 100 grams of food:

Food Amount of Biotin (in 100g)
Peanuts 101, 4 µg
Almond 43, 6 µg
Cashew nuts 13, 7 µg
Wheat bran 44, 4 µg
Boiled egg 16, 5 µg
Hazelnut 75 µg
Mushroom 8, 5 µg
Boiled Salmon 5 µg
Avocado 3, 6 µg

In addition to being found in food, biotin is produced by the intestinal flora and, therefore, it is important that foods rich in fiber are consumed and that the person drinks at least 1.5L of water a day, as this it is possible to maintain the proper functioning of the intestine and favor the production of biotin.

Biotin can also be found in the form of a supplement in capsules, and should be indicated by the doctor or nutritionist when it is not possible to obtain the ideal amount of biotin through food or when the presence of some indicative signs of lack of biotin, such as hair loss, weak nails, loss of appetite and excessive tiredness, for example, however these symptoms are rarer and are usually seen in hospitalized people.

How to use biotin supplement

There is no specific recommendation on the dosage of biotin, as it will depend on the cause, as supplementation may be indicated in cases of biotinidase deficiency, insufficient intake through food, cases of alopecia or acne or even for those who want to strengthen their nails and hair and improve the appearance of their skin.

Thus, it is best to follow the recommendations of the doctor and/or nutritionist, who will know the most suitable dose for each case, since the recommended dose may vary according to the indicated formulation, as well as the period of use.

Who should not use

The biotin supplement should not be used in people who are hypersensitive to any component present in the formula, and it is also not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women, unless recommended by a doctor.

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