Foods High In Biotin
Biotin, or vitamin H, is a B-complex vitamin that your body can't store and must get from food. While 1 slice of whole-wheat bread yields up to 6 mcg biotin, 100 g boiled eggs' yolk gives 25 mcg. Walnuts, veggies like tomato, and fruits like avocado are rich sources. Just 3 oz cooked liver can give you 27–35 mcg biotin, meeting a large chunk of your daily dietary need of 100–200 mcg.
What Is Biotin?
Although commonly referred to as vitamin H, biotin belongs to the family of B-complex vitamins. All vitamins in this group help the body convert food into fuel or glucose, which then produces energy and also helps the body metabolize fats and protein.
Biotin, like all other B vitamins, is water-soluble, which means the body does not store it. It is produced in the intestine by bacteria, and the rest of the body’s requirement is met by the biotin that is naturally absorbed from food.1
How It Helps
Proper intake of biotin can help relieve symptoms of nerve damage of the arms, hands, legs, and feet due to diabetes or kidney failure and cradle cap (a scaly scalp condition) in infants. Mixed with chromium it may improve blood sugar control in type 2 diabetics, and mixed with zinc, it can fight alopecia areata (a type of hair loss from the immune system attacking hair follicles) in both children and adults.2
Foods With High Biotin
According to a food fact chart published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition (APJCN), an average American needs to maintain a daily intake of anywhere between 100 and 200 micrograms of biotin.3
Given below are some natural and easily available food sources of biotin that are found to have the highest traces of the vitamin. However, you may find that the range of the biotin content is quite wide in each of these cases.
1. Brewer’s Yeast
The Linus Pauling Institute of the Oregon State University says that a 7 gram packet of yeast contains about 1.4 to 14 micrograms of biotin.4 A study also found that biotin was responsible for the fatty acid synthesis in yeast.5
Essential fatty acids are required for the maintenance of optimal health and to develop brain structure, but they cannot be synthesized by our bodies.6 Therefore, we get them through food sources in which these fatty acids have already been synthesized, thanks to the work of vitamins like biotin.
2. Nuts And Nut Butter
Almonds, peanuts, pecan, and walnuts and nut butter made from them are good sources of vitamin H, says the University of Maryland Medical Center. The APJCN reports that walnuts have the highest vitamin content of all nuts, which is 2 microgram per 100 grams.7
3. Whole Grains
Eating a slice of whole-wheat bread will give you between 0.02 and 6 micrograms of biotin, says the Linus Pauling Institute.8 Cooked oats and rice bran top the list of grains that are rich in vitamin H, says a fact sheet published by the North Carolina State University.9
4. Egg Yolk And Dairy Products
Yolks are one of the most widely accepted sources of biotin. The interesting part, however, is that while 100 g of boiled eggs’ yolks contain about 25 micrograms of biotin, raw egg whites contain a protein called avidin, which binds to the biotin tightly, preventing it from being absorbed into the bloodstream.10 Another category of food that boasts of high biotin content is dairy products like cheese and skimmed cow’s milk.
5. Organ Meat And Fish
Another rich source of biotin is organ meat of animals. Cooked liver contains about 27 to 35 micrograms of biotin in every 3 ounces, and the same quantity of cooked pork contains about 2 to 4 micrograms.11 Fish like salmon and sardine, too, are rich in biotin.12
6. Fresh Vegetables And Fruits
The Colorado State University says that most fresh vegetables contain biotin.13 Cauliflower, tomato, artichoke, and beans top the list. In fruits, bananas, avocados, black currants, and dates are other biotin-rich food.14
Apart from these food sources, biotin is also available as single-nutrient supplements and is often included in vitamin B-complex and multivitamin-mineral supplements.
Does It Have Side Effects?
Also, so far, no known side effects due to the overdose of biotin has been found, the reason why there is no prescribed tolerable upper intake level of the vitamin. As more research needs to be done to find out more about the vitamin’s real effect and associated risk factors, it is always advisable to eat a balanced diet and consult with your medical practitioner before turning to supplements.
References [ + ]
|1, 2.||↑||Vitamin H (Biotin). University Of Maryland.|
|3, 7, 12, 14.||↑||Biotins. Asia Pacific Journal Of Clinical Nutrition.|
|4, 11.||↑||Biotin. Linus Pauling Institute.|
|5.||↑||Suomalainen, Heikki, and A. J. A. Keränen. “The effect of biotin deficiency on the synthesis of fatty acids by yeast.” Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA)-Specialized Section on Lipids and Related Subjects 70 (1963): 493-503.|
|6.||↑||Chang, Chia-Yu, Der-Shin Ke, and Jen-Yin Chen. “Essential fatty acids and human brain.” Acta Neurol Taiwan 18, no. 4 (2009): 231-41.|
|8.||↑||Biotin. Linus Pauling Institute.|
|9.||↑||Biotin. North Carolina State University.|
|10.||↑||Vitamin H (Biotin). University Of Maryland.|
|13.||↑||Water Soluble Vitamins. Colorado State University.|