What is biotin and what is it used for? You will be surprised to learn that biotin can be used for a long list of purposes; from nails to hair, skin to horses, dogs, cats, and many other utilities. Find out how important this vitamin is to both human health and animal health below.
- What Is Biotin used for? Is Biotin a Vitamin?
- Biotin Uses-Use of Biotin for Hair Growth and Hair Loss
- Use of Biotin for Nails Growth, Brittle & Skin
- Biotin Uses Men, Women, Kids: Weight Loss, Metabolism, Hair & Diabetes
- Biotin for Horses-Biotin Uses for Horse Hooves, Hair Growth & Mane
- Uses of Biotin for Dogs & Cats
- Biotin Sources
What is biotin? Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin classified as a B- complex vitamin. It is required by all organisms but can be synthesized by only bacteria, yeasts, molds, algae, and some plant species. Biotin, just like all B vitamins helps convert food (carbohydrates) into energy (glucose). It also helps the body to breakdown fats and proteins. B complex vitamins are required for healthy eyes, skin and hair. But is it really considered a vitamin?
Is biotin a vitamin? What kind of vitamin? Biotin is a B complex vitamin that has been previously known as Coenzyme R, vitamin H or vitamin B7. These names came about due to the uncertainty surrounding its role in normal metabolism.
Being a water-soluble vitamin means that the body does not store Biotin and therefore needs to be replenished regularly in the diet. However, bacteria in the intestines can make biotin.
What is biotin used for? From hair to growing nails and even various uses in dogs and horses, there is just a long list of uses of biotin. Below are some of the most common and interesting uses.
Biotin Uses-Use of Biotin for Hair Growth and Hair Loss
There are various uses of biotin for hair loss, hair thinning and even to grow facial hair. It is very important to understand that biotin does not stimulate new hair growth. Rather it renews follicles and root hairs that are already growing.
It is also recommended for people suffering from mild alopecia. Biotin for hair is not an option for everybody. People with long-term hair loss or family history of hair loss might not benefit from Biotin for healthier hair.
Biotin deficiency can lead to hair thinning and eventually hair loss. It widely recommended that taking biotin supplements or washing your hair with biotin-rich shampoo helps replenish hair resulting in longer, thicker and fuller hair. However, there is not enough evidence to support biotin’s effectiveness in managing hair thinning and hair loss.
Does biotin help nails grow longer and stronger? There is no scientific evidence to prove that biotin helps in nail growth or treatment of brittle nails. It is however suggested that it works on nails the same way it does on hair by renewing cells, which are the building blocks of the body including nails.
Biotin for nail growth uses: Nails have a fibrous protein called keratin. Biotin is easily absorbed to the core of the nail where it thickens and encourages nail growth. The recommended dose of biotin for nails that are thicker and healthy is 30mcg daily for at least one month.
Biotin for brittle nails uses: If you have brittle nails that break easily, nutrients like biotin can help strengthen them and reduce tendency to split. People who have used biotin for nails report to have seen positive results after about one month of daily intake of biotin supplements.
Uses of Biotin for Skin
What does biotin do for your skin? Biotin is very essential in metabolism of fatty acids. Proper breakdown of fats is critical for a healthy skin. Due to constant contact with external environment, skin cells are rapidly replaced. Fatty acids in the skin protect the cells against water loss and damage. When biotin intake is not adequate, fat metabolism is altered making the skin cells the first to develop symptoms.
So, does biotin work to nourish the skin? It works by renewing body cells and aiding in breakdown and proper distribution of body fats. For details on biotin for skin check out this post: Biotin for Skin – What Does Biotin Do for Skin, Biotin Skin Benefits, Reviews & Results
Biotin Uses Men, Women, Kids: Weight Loss, Metabolism, Hair & Diabetes
Biotin for Weight Loss- Women & Men
What are biotin uses for weight loss? High levels of biotin help in the conversion of carbohydrates, fats and proteins into glucose or energy for the body. It helps metabolize nutrients efficiently and stabilize blood glucose.
It also helps the body use up these nutrients and reduce the feelings of fatigue that accompany diet and exercise when you are trying to lose weight through increased aerobics. Increased metabolism and uptake of these food components helps in weight loss and weight management.
Biotin for Men & Women Hair
Do you suffer from premature hair loss or hair thinning? This is a common problem in men due to genetic disposition and normal fluctuation of male hormones that causes a receding hairline followed by loss of hair in the crown of the head. Women also experience hair loss. Solution? Biotin is known to help thicken hair and stimulate hair growth.
Male pattern baldness usually occurs with age but even men in their teens and youth can suffer from hair loss. Nutritional supplements with biotin can help strengthen hair and stimulate growth. But does biotin work for men hair growth? You can use biotin to stimulate hair growth in both men and women. Being one of the components used in hair products for treatment of hair loss, it has been found to easily penetrate hair follicles, nourish them into thicker, healthier strands.
The healthier your body is the easier it is to prevent hair loss and stimulate regrowth. This means having healthier hair follicles, which can produce healthy hair regrowth after a bout of hair loss.
Other benefits of biotin for men: It definitely has endless benefits and that is why it is often referred to as a miracle vitamin. Other than for hair and nails, other benefits for men include the following:
- Boosts fat metabolism
- Improves memory and stabilizes moods
- It is good for men with diabetics
- Helps in sports and bodybuilding
Biotin for Kids
What are the uses of biotin for kids? The vitamin is very important for children and teens as well. This can be easily found in foods such as dairy products, nuts, salmon and chicken. Dietary intake is not limited. Adequate intake when supplementing are as follows:
- 0-6 months: 5 mcg
- 6-12 months: 6 mcg
- 1-3 years: 8 mcg
- 4-8 years: 12 mcg
People who suffer from metabolic problems may get a biotin prescription from a doctor. According to FitDay.com, “Your doctor may even prescribe a biotin supplement… since it can help get your metabolism up to normal functioning levels quickly.” So, for whom is this important? Precisely if you are trying to cut down your weight since increase in metabolism helps with weight loss.
Biotin and Diabetes
Use of biotin for diabetes treatment: Because biotin helps the breakdown of carbohydrates and uptake of glucose, it helps in the management of diabetes. The vitamin influences blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. Studies have shown that biotin deficiency impairs regulation of glucose. In combination with chromium, it is likely to improve blood sugar control in people with type 2 diabetes. Biotin alone does not have as much effect.
It also improves the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy in people who developed this condition as a complication from diabetes. However, there are no studies to confirm that it really helps in treating peripheral neuropathy.
Biotin for Horses-Biotin Uses for Horse Hooves, Hair Growth & Mane
Are there any uses of biotin for horses’ hooves? The outer layer of horse hoof is similar to that of the human nails as its main components are fibrous proteins. Biotin helps start keratin production in the hoof of your horse hence making it stronger. Because of its reputation, biotin has widely been used in horse supplements to boost healthy hooves especially in racing horses. Dietary intake of biotin in horses with brittle hooves over time has resulted in thicker, healthy hooves.
As Stacey Oke, MSc, DVM, a practicing veterinarian, reports on TheHorse.com, alternatively, nondietary factors such as shoeing, trimming, including other mechanical factors, in addition to biotin supplementation, can also contribute to improved hoof quality and growth rate.
Biotin for Horses Hair Growth & Mane
To some extent, biotin plays a role in horses’ hair growth and healthy mane. One particular supplement said to support a beautiful mane, tail, & coat is Biotin Plus. It should be noted that growth of mane is also determined by the genes.
Of importance to note is that, just like human beings and other animals, horses cannot synthesize their own biotin. It must be obtained through dietary supplements or absorption of biotin that is synthesized by intestinal bacteria.
This vitamin is is an essential for metabolic functions in the horse’s body. This supplement is a favorite among horse keepers as it promotes healthy coats, hooves and a thick strong mane. Although some people say that biotin horse supplements are expensive, it is still unclear the amount required by a horse.
Does biotin really work for horses? Studies done show that biotin does work in maintaining healthy horse hooves , coats and mane. More research is underway. Hooves supplemented with biotin showed improvement within 8 to 15 months. It however, might not work for all horses or might even take a longer time to see the results.
However, remember good nutrition is the prerequisite for a healthy and happy horse-supplements like biotin are just an additional help which may work or not work.
Carey Williams, PhD, equine extension specialist and assistant professor at the Equine Science Center at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, says that pasture is the best source of biotin for your horse. He adds, that biotin is found in high concentrations in alfalfa, moderate concentrations in barley, oat, and soybean meal, and only in low levels in corn.
In addition to supplementation, ensure to feed your horse properly especially with quality protein for healthy hair growth, coat, tail or mane
The vitamin is often used alongside other fatty acids to treat dogs with allergies. Several studies have shown that dogs with dry, itchy, allergic skin benefited from biotin supplements. Biotin for dogs is safe with no side effects. It can be found in powder form containing biotin only or in supplements containing other ingredients.
Use of biotin for dogs’ hair growth: Biotin is an important component in maintaining healthy skin and hair in dogs. Allergies in dogs usually cause skin problems, dry, thin hair, a dull coat and loss of hair. Biotin helps relieve dry itchy skin and other conditions. The recommended daily dose of biotin for dogs is 0.001mg/lb.
Use of biotin for dogs’ nails: Several nutrients can help in strengthening dog nails. One of them is Biotin. This will help improve nail thickness in dogs especially those with brittle nails. Dogs should receive 5mg per kilogram of the dog’s weight of biotin per day. One of these supplements is Onychotin capsules, which is richly concentrated in extra biotin.
Biotin for Cats + Dosage
Just like dogs, your kitty needs enough biotin for a healthy coat and nails (claws) as well as allergies. According to Pet Education, the recommended biotin dosage for cats is 1mcg for each day. Best sources for cats include Corn, soybeans, beef liver
Where biotin found? Normally, you may not need to worry about finding sources of this vitamin since bacteria living in the human intestines naturally synthesize it. It can readily be found in the normal diet. It is however not stored in the body. Biotin supplements are readily available over the counter and do not require a prescription. It is however important to consult a doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding before taking biotin. Some products such as hair shampoo contain biotin.
Here is a list of foods rich in Biotin: walnuts, almonds and other nuts, seafood, meat, whole wheat bread, chicken, egg yolk, soya beans, dairy products such as cow’s milk, vegetables like onions, carrots tomatoes & cucumber, Swiss chard, fruits and berries, beverages like black tea, coffee, wine and beer.
Follow these suggested links to learn more about Biotin
- Biotin Reviews for Weight Loss, Hair, Skin & Nails- Best Biotin Brand, Where To Buy
- Biotin Dosage for Nails, Hair Adults, 5000mcg, Overdose, How Much Biotin is Too Much – Side Effects
- Biotin for Hair Loss Effectiveness, How Much Biotin for Hair Loss & Reviews
- Biotin Side Effects, Is Biotin Safe, 5000mcg Pills, Skin & Period.
- Biotin Hair Growth, How Much Biotin for Hair Growth Results, Reviews, Dosage & Products
- Foods With Biotin & Role, Biotin Rich Foods, Biotin In Foods.
- Benefits of Biotin Weight Loss, Hair, Skin – What Is Biotin Good for?
- Biotin Deficiency, Symptoms, Hair Loss, Infants, Rash & Treatment.