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Is Biotin Used for Weight Loss?

By Jonathan McLelland ; Updated July 18, 2017

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the prevalence of obesity in the U.S. grew 1.1 percent between 2007 and 2009. This rise in obesity not only costs states money in obesity-related expenditures, but also reflects a growing number of people at risk for obesity-related illnesses. Obesity dramatically increases the risk of high blood pressure, angina, heart disease and stroke, according to Sentry Health Monitors. Biotin is a naturally forming vitamin used by some alternative medicine practitioners to help reduce body fat.

Biotin

Biotin is part of the B complex vitamin group, which is responsible for converting carbohydrates, fats and protein into glucose, or transferring food into energy. Biotin is a naturally occurring vitamin found in a wide variety of dietary sources, such as cooked eggs, soybeans and other beans, whole grains and cauliflower. It is important to note that processed foods do not contain biotin, thus it is vital to consume fresh ingredients to ensure essential vitamins are present. Biotin also is used by the body to create healthy hair, eyes, liver and skin, as well as to promote nervous system functionality.

Biotin and Weight Loss

Due to the nature of biotin, weight loss manufacturers might market this vitamin as a weight loss supplement as it ensures the body efficiently metabolizes fats, carbohydrates and proteins. While the effectiveness of biotin supplementation for the purpose of weight loss has not been discussed within scientific circles, proper biotin levels will help ensure carbohydrates, proteins and fats are properly metabolized. Biotin supplementation should be considered only as a supportive measure in a complete weight loss plan, which includes proper diet and regular physical activity.

Consumption Methods

While biotin can be consumed through dietary sources, the concentration of this vitamin in food is small. Thus, biotin also can be consumed through supplementation. As of 2011, biotin is available in tablet and capsule form. Biotin supplements can be sold in conjunction with other B complex vitamins in the form of a multivitamin or as an individual supplement. The University of Maryland Medical Center suggests adults 19 and older consume 30 mcg of biotin per day; however, women who are breastfeeding may consume up to 35 mcg of biotin per day.

Warnings

As with any supplement, it is vital you consult with your doctor regarding dosage amounts and whether biotin supplementation is safe for you. While MedlinePlus states no medication interactions are known to occur with biotin, always tell your doctor what medicines you are taking to prevent any potential adverse side effects. Do not consume a higher dose than that recommended by the University of Maryland Medical Center unless directed by your physician.

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