Biotin, also known as vitamin H or vitamin B7, is a water-soluble B-complex vitamin necessary for cell growth and the production of fatty acids in living organisms.
The word “biotin” comes from the ancient Greek word “biotos,” which means “life” or “sustenance.” Biotin cannot be synthesized by human cells, but it is found in numerous foods and produced by bacteria in the body. Biotin is important for our metabolism by helping convert the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins in the food we eat into fuel for the body.
Biotin deficiency has been directly associated with hair loss and brittle hair, therefore, is a common ingredient in many supplements for healthy hair. Biotin’s influence on healthy hair stems from its role in forming the amino acids that produce keratin. Keratin is an insoluble protein found in epidermal tissues, such as hair, skin and nails and is what helps give them strength and protects them from damage. As we age, we experience a decline in the production of keratin and those with poor diets can have even a more dramatic reduction in keratin production.
Biotin is water soluble, therefore, anything your body does not use will be excreted in your urine and not develop concerning levels.