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Biotin

Biotin

Biotin, also known as vitamin H, helps maintain healthy hair, skin, and nails. It’s is one of the B complex vitamins that are responsible for converting food into energy. You can get adequate amounts of biotin by consuming organ meats, fish, eggs, seeds, vegetables, and nuts. You can also take biotin supplements that are available in capsule forms to reap its full health benefits.

Overall Health Benefits

  • Treats Brittle Nails [1-3]
  • Maintains Healthy Hair [4-6]
  • Lowers Blood Sugar Levels [7-8]
  • Maintains Healthy Skin [9-12]
  • Helps People with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) [13-14]
  • Treats Depression[15-16]

Proven Health Benefits

Treats Brittle Nails

Studies show that biotin is essential in keeping your nails healthy and strong:

  1. A study showed increased nail thickness in people who received biotin supplements.[1]
  2. Biotin supplementation resulted in firmer and harder fingernails in patients who had brittle nails before the treatment. [2]
  3. Clinical trials assessing the effects of oral biotin supplements showed positive results in treating various nail diseases. [3] 

Maintains Healthy Hair

Studies support the beneficial effects of biotin on hair health:

  1. In healthy women experiencing hair loss, oral administration of biotin significantly improved hair regrowth. [4]
  2. In patients with poor hair growth, biotin supplementation resulted in increased hair volume and fullness. [5]
  3. A study found that biotin deficiency can increase the risk of hair loss. [6]

Lowers Blood Sugar Levels

Biotin has also been found to lower blood sugar levels:

  1. In diabetic mice, biotin treatment improved the subjects’ response to insulin, a hormone that lowers blood sugar levels. [7]
  2. Biotin administration reduced diabetic symptoms in mouse models.[8]

Maintains Healthy Skin

Studies also show that biotin can help maintain healthy skin by treating various skin disorders:

  1. Studies showed that biotin was effective in acne treatment and prevention. [9]
  2. A showed that biotin therapy is beneficial in treating certain skin disorders. [10]
  3. Studies found that biotin deficiency was associated with increased prevalence of skin rashes. [11-12]

Helps People with Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

Evidence show that biotin has beneficial effects on MS, a condition that affects the brain and spinal cord:

  1. High dose biotin administration reversed the damaging effects of MS in patients with the disease.[13]
  2. Studies showed that biotin deficiency could be a contributing factor for MS development. [14]

Treats Depression

Evidence also shows that biotin has mood-enhancing effects:

  1. In patients receiving artificial supply of nutrients via the veins, biotin reduced depressive symptoms. [15]
  2. A study found that biotin deficiency was associated with higher incidence of depression. [16]

References:

  1. Hochman LG, Scher RK, Meyerson MS. Brittle nails: response to daily biotin supplementation. Cutis. 1993 Apr;51(4):303-5. PMID: 8477615.
  2. Floersheim GL. Behandlung brüchiger Fingernägel mit Biotin [Treatment of brittle fingernails with biotin]. Z Hautkr. 1989 Jan 15;64(1):41-8. German. PMID: 2648686.
  3. Cashman MW, Sloan SB. Nutrition and nail disease. Clin Dermatol. 2010 Jul-Aug;28(4):420-5. doi: 10.1016/j.clindermatol.2010.03.037. PMID: 20620759.
  4. Glynis A. A Double-blind, Placebo-controlled Study Evaluating the Efficacy of an Oral Supplement in Women with Self-perceived Thinning Hair. J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2012;5(11):28-34.
  5. Patel DP, Swink SM, Castelo-Soccio L. A Review of the Use of Biotin for Hair Loss. Skin Appendage Disord. 2017 Aug;3(3):166-169. doi: 10.1159/000462981. Epub 2017 Apr 27. PMID: 28879195; PMCID: PMC5582478.
  6. Trüeb RM. Serum Biotin Levels in Women Complaining of Hair Loss. Int J Trichology. 2016;8(2):73-77. doi:10.4103/0974-7753.188040.
  7. Reddi A, DeAngelis B, Frank O, Lasker N, Baker H. Biotin supplementation improves glucose and insulin tolerances in genetically diabetic KK mice. Life Sci. 1988;42(13):1323-30. doi: 10.1016/0024-3205(88)90226-3. PMID: 3280936.
  8. McCarty MF. In type 1 diabetics, high-dose biotin may compensate for low hepatic insulin exposure, promoting a more normal expression of glycolytic and gluconeogenic enyzymes and thereby aiding glycemic control. Med Hypotheses. 2016 Oct;95:45-48. doi: 10.1016/j.mehy.2016.08.002. Epub 2016 Aug 10. PMID: 27692165.
  9. Piraccini BM, Berardesca E, Fabbrocini G, Micali G, Tosti A. Biotin: overview of the treatment of diseases of cutaneous appendages and of hyperseborrhea. G Ital Dermatol Venereol. 2019 Oct;154(5):557-566. doi: 10.23736/S0392-0488.19.06434-4. PMID: 31638351.
  10. Lipner SR. Rethinking biotin therapy for hair, nail, and skin disorders. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2018 Jun;78(6):1236-1238. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2018.02.018. Epub 2018 Feb 10. PMID: 29438761.
  11. Patel DP, Swink SM, Castelo-Soccio L. A Review of the Use of Biotin for Hair Loss. Skin Appendage Disord. 2017;3(3):166-169. doi:10.1159/000462981.
  12. Rajendiran A, Sampath S. Biotinidase deficiency – clinching the diagnosis rapidly can make all the difference! BMJ Case Reports. 2011;2011 pii:bcr0720114494. doi 10.1136/bcr.07.2011.4494.
  13. Tourbah A, Lebrun-Frenay C, Edan G, Clanet M, Papeix C, Vukusic S, De Sèze J, Debouverie M, Gout O, Clavelou P, Defer G, Laplaud DA, Moreau T, Labauge P, Brochet B, Sedel F, Pelletier J; MS-SPI study group. MD1003 (high-dose biotin) for the treatment of progressive multiple sclerosis: A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Mult Scler. 2016 Nov;22(13):1719-1731. doi: 10.1177/1352458516667568. Epub 2016 Sep 1. PMID: 27589059; PMCID: PMC5098693.
  14. Available at https://www.mdpi.com/2305-6320/6/3/95/htm.
  15. Levenson JL. Biotin-responsive depression during hyperalimentation. JPEN J Parenter Enteral Nutr. 1983 Mar-Apr;7(2):181-3. doi: 10.1177/0148607183007002181. PMID: 6406708.
  16. Baugh CM, Malone JH, Butterworth CE Jr. Human biotin deficiency. A case history of biotin deficiency induced by raw egg consumption in a cirrhotic patient. Am J Clin Nutr. 1968 Feb;21(2):173-82. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/21.2.173. PMID: 5642891.
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