Friday, May 1, 2009

Continuing With The Vitamin B Theme, Biotin, Get The Facts!

What is biotin? How much do I need? Where can I find it?
Biotin, is a member of the water-soluble B-complex family of vitamins, and is an essential nutrient in human nutrition. Biotin is well known for its beneficial effects for hair, skin, and nails. Humans lack the ability to synthesize biotin and derive this vitamin from food or dietary supplementation. Biotin is essential for enzyme proteins that play vital roles in the metabolism of all major nutrients (fats, proteins, and carbohydrates) in the body. One such biotin-requiring enzyme is crucial for the functioning of the nervous system. Biotin is critical for the synthesis of fatty acids, amino acids and sugars, elimination of byproducts arising from the metabolism of proteins and amino acids (particularly essential amino acids), cholesterol and other fats.

Biotin plays a crucial role in converting energy sources such as carbohydrates and amino acids into critical substances, which drive energy yielding processes in body cells. Biotin serves a particular function in enabling body cells to utilize sugars (glucose) as the major source of energy. Biotin inadequacy in the body is known to result in impaired utilization of sugars. In some instances, biotin supplementation has been found to help maintain healthy blood sugar and fat levels. Since biotin interacts with proteins associated with the genetic material (DNA) in cells, it has a potential to influence gene expression and, therefore, enhanced body cell metabolism and the maintenance of healthy cells.

Even though biotin is distributed in a variety of foods, its levels are generally lower that those of other B vitamins. Rich sources of biotin include egg yolk, liver, crude wheat bran and yeast. Soybeans, nuts, and cereals are also good sources of biotin. The suggested Reference Daily Intake (RDI) for biotin is 30 mg.

One more B-complex related topic tomorrow night then on something new!

Blessings for a Glorious Day!

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