One thing everyone can agree on is that the human body is a very complex machine. Unlike a normal machine like a car or computer it is a lot harder to replace parts when they go bad. This is especially true with as we get older. The human body starts breaking down slowly as we age and one of the things that happen to a lot of us is our hair starts becoming more and sparser. For some of us we accept this fact and age gracefully as the saying goes. For others we grab the nearest blunt object and try to take on the aging process like it was a killer in a slasher movie. Of course hair loss isn’t reserved entirely for the older crowd either. Either though medical procedure or other reasons we may be losing our hair a lot sooner than we would want to. Regardless of your age Biotin is often recommended for those of us who wish to hold on to our glorious locks. But is Biotin all it is cracked up to be?
List of Pros of Biotin
1. Biotin on its own is responsible for production of fatty acids, metabolizing fats and amino acids, and cell growth. What this means in laymen’s speak is that Biotin helps our bodies’ digestion and allows us to grow and heal. Biotin also may help maintain blood sugar equilibrium which can be particularly important for individuals that struggle with or have a hard time maintaining adequate blood sugar levels.
2. One of the biggest benefits from Biotin is hair health and growth. While on average your hair will grow about an inch a month Biotin is believed to make the hair fuller as well as healthier. Results differ for each person of course but on average people using Biotin experience better hair growth over all. Keep in mind that your body on average produces excess Biotin daily.
3. It is highly recommended that you ask a medical professional before taking any supplements. Typically Biotin supplements are to be used by those that suffer from Biotin deficiency. There is no definitive test to show if you suffer from Biotin deficiency, however, there are some common symptoms. Typically Biotin deficiency suffers have a rash around the nose and mouth, thinning and/or graying hair, in addition they may also have nervous disorders such as depression, hallucinations and/or exhaustion. As stated above check with your local medical professional before beginning any supplemental regiment.
List of Cons of Biotin
1. As with many supplements there are side effects. With Biotin one of the major side effects is increased acne. Typically this appears around the jaw line and chin. This is not atypical for everyone as different levels of dose may increase or decrease the appearance of acne. Currently there is no known reason for this as research is continuing to be done on the effects of Biotin supplements. This is true for many supplements as currently there is little to no regulation regarding health supplements. Many supplements do not have FDA approval and are typically fueled by anecdotal evidence. Biotin Supplements are no different as their typical use for fuller, healthier hair is tentative at best.
2. In some cases an individual may develop an allergy to Biotin. Usually people with allergies to B12 will be susceptible to a Biotin allergy as well. Symptoms of an allergic reaction to Biotin range from itchy rash and nausea to pain and/or tightness in the chest and swelling of the face and throat. Given the severity of these allergy symptoms the potential risks far outweigh the benefits. As stated above consult a licensed medial professional before starting any supplement regiment; this is especially true for Biotin as unlike other vitamin supplements your body will on average produce excess amounts of Biotin regularly so additional Biotin may cause unwanted side effects.
3. Additionally for individuals taking anti-seizure medication or medications for lowering cholesterol Biotin supplements may cause these medications to have a reduced effectiveness. This is also true for individuals with problems maintaining blood sugar levels. While Biotin does help your metabolism and blood sugar levels normally they can interact negatively with these medications. Also, for women looking to conceive Biotin can have drastic effects on your pregnancy. Specifically higher levels of Biotin have been known to lead to increase the chance of miscarrying. The reasons for this are not fully understood as of yet but a correlation with higher Biotin levels and miscarriages does exist
Overall for most people Biotin can potentially help hair grow healthier and fuller; however, there is a risk of potentially causing mild to severe health problems as a result. The disadvantages can easily override any benefit you may receive but this is not true for everyone. Again consulting a licensed professional before starting any vitamin or supplemental regiment is not only highly recommended but could be lifesaving.