The search for better skin, long, thick hair and beautiful nails is an unending quest. However, with the introduction of biotin in the supplement world, it has become an easy, reliable fix! Needless to say, biotin or vitamin B7 has a fan following of its own due to its numerous health benefits including weight loss.
However, just like any other supplement, biotin also has dark skin foods like milk, carrots, salmon and nuts. But some people fail to meet their everyday need of biotin which is sometimes met through supplements. But before putting anything new in your body it is best to first learn about it and how it can potentially be harmful for you no matter how rare.
What is biotin?
the word biotin is derived from a greek word which means life or sustenance, this speaks volumes about the kind of impact this unique vitamin has on the body. Also referred to as the lesser known vitamin H, biotin is one B complex vitamin that enables the body to convert food into energy.
Biotin is synonymous with hair also. it also keeps your eyes, liver and nervous system in good condition.
Here are some unexpected and dangerous side effects of taking biotin:
1). May interfere with other medication :
Do you take over the counter or prescription medication with dietary supplements? You may be putting yourself at risk! For some people, these supplements increase the effectiveness of other medication, on the other hand it may decrease it as well.
Biotin is one dietary supplement that may interfere with anticonvulsant medication. This will lower it’s effectiveness or may even cause new side effects to pop up. So always speak to your doctor before taking biotin or any other supplements for that matter.
2) Acne :
Biotin is known for adding volume to hair and making nails strong, but is acne the price you really want to pay? The body absorbs biotin the same way it absorbs other vitamins and minerals through the gastrointestinal system. This is also the system that absorbs acne causing agents present in the skin.
But, in case of biotin overload, this absorption gets interrupted. In the end, this results in less acne fighting vitamins and of course, the return of the dreaded acne! If you are taking biotin regularly and notice some acne, especially along your chin and jawline, then biotin may be doing more than beautifying your hair.
3) Skin rash :
If you thought that acne was horrible then let me tell you, the skin problems related to biotin don’t stop there. Skin rash is a common side effect of too much biotin in your system. Some people have even experienced skin rashes.
This happens because the blood vessels can become inflamed because the body perceives biotin as a foreign element. Skin rashes develop as an allergic reaction to some vitamins but sometimes it may even happen if you take biotin in excess. Talk to your doctor about cutting down the biotin.
4) Upset stomach :
The moment you feel like your stomach health is being compromised, stop! Unhealthy gut health is a breeding ground for several diseases and a weakened immune system. Basically, a happy gut is the secret to a happy life.
Taking biotin can wreak havoc in your digestive system and will cause several stomach issues like cramps, nausea and diarrhea. Not just biotin, if you experience stomach problems, every time you have any supplement then it is best to ditch it and look for organic options that will suit your body more.
5) May mess up lab results :
This one’s scary, especially during this day and age of the pandemic. Among any other side effects this has to be one of the most commonly experienced, but it all depends on your dosage. While biotin deficiency causes a whole different set of problems, high doses of biotin may cause false lab results on things like a thyroid hormone test.
Incorrect lab results means misdiagnosis. In order to avoid this lab snafu, it’s best to stop taking biotin or any other vitamin supplements a couple of days before getting your blood drawn.
6) May cause weight gain :
This has to be one of the most unexpected side effects of taking biotin. Who wants to put on extra pounds? No one! Excessive amounts of B vitamin is linked with obesity and diabetes. Biotin does not directly influence your weight but it works sneakily. It increases your cravings and appetite. Biotin also boosts your metabolism, It digests food very easily leaving you feeling hungry all over again.
7). Kidney problems
Did you know that over 14% of American adults suffer from kidney problems? The kidneys are your body’s filtration unit. They have millions of tiny filtering units that remove waste from the body. However, people with kidney problems should take biotin with extra care.
Biotin is water soluble meaning it gets filtered out through the kidneys. Excessive biotin can cause serious delay in the clearance of vitamins that may lead to serious complications.
Foods that contain biotin :
The best way of getting biotin is through the food you eat. Speaking of food, you can easily find biotin in cooked egg yolks, bananas, soybeans, legumes, mushrooms, spinach, milk, cauliflower and more.
Biotin supplements are literally everywhere and won’t be tough for you to find it in any local drugstore. Although there is no everyday recommended amount, it is safest to have about 30 micrograms of biotin everyday for everyone over 13 years of age.
Things to know about biotin:
These are a couple of other things you need to know about biotin in order to make the right choice. Generally, biotin supplements contain way more biotin than the general accepted amount. Any biotin bottle contains anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 mg of biotin which is just too much. Biotin is a common purchase among people looking for longer, thicker hair and stronger nails. However, unless you are actually deficient in biotin, there is no use for it.
Signs of biotin deficiency are
– hair loss
– skin rash
– brittle nails.
When it comes to hair health, keratin is the most important protein. Although biotin does sort of support keratin, any other benefits are up for debate.
how to tell if your body needs more biotin?
Some telltale signs include dry skin, brittle hair, irritated eyes and sometimes facial rash! Here’s the thing. if you have a varied diet and love eating different types of food then chances are you’re not deficient in biotin as it is a rare disorder.
However, genetic disorders, skin problems in babies and some surgeries may contribute to low biotin levels. Shocking fact! Do you know that at least one third of pregnant women have a slight biotin deficiency, even though they have more than half the average amount of their regular diet? It is always better to get it checked, especially when carrying a child.
Heavy drinking is another suspect for the body’s inability to register biotin. Biotin is important for energy production. It also supports a number of enzymes involved in the metabolism of fats, carbs and proteins. However, it should be treated as a supplement and not the sole saviour for your health problems.
You can only enjoy its benefits if you accompany it with healthy eating and regular exercise. Wondering if your body is sending signals that something is wrong?