Biotin is also called vitamin B7. It used to be called vitamin H which stands for "haar" and "haut" for hair and skin in German. It specifically refers to the hair and skin because a lack of biotin in the diet causes hair loss and skin disease.
What can possibly happen when you lack biotin in diet diet? Biotin deficiency can affect you in many ways:
It can cause:
- hair loss (alopecia)
- damage to your nails
- seborrhic dermatitis
- skin infection in the form of red, scaly rashes that appear around the eyes, mouth, nose and the genitals
- conjunctivitis; and
- neurological disorders like tingling sensation in the legs, numbness, depression, and hallucinations.
- muscular pain
- paresthesia ("pins and needles" sensation, pricking, tingling sensation)
- mild depression
- anorexia (eating problems)
Healthy people are not likely to experience vitamin B7 deficiency for the following reasons:
- healthy people make sure that they get an adequate supply of biotin in their daily diet
- their body has the ability to reuse the biotin coming from wastes excreted by the body.
- bacteria present in the intestines of healthy people manufacture more biotin than the amount needed by the body thus adequately supplying the amount required by the body.
When deficiency occurs, it can be readily corrected by taking an effective vitamin B7 or Biotin supplement to end your lack of biotin in the body consequently putting and end to your health issues caused by insufficient biotin in the diet.
Besides the lack of biotin in the diet, another cause of biotin deficiency is eating raw egg whites which leads to a disorder called the egg white injury.
What's in the egg whites that's causing the deficiency? Raw egg whites contain a protein called avidin which has the ability to bind biotin molecules but they are easily destroyed when subjected to high heat.
Avidin is a protein found in the egg whites of certain birds, reptiles and amphibians that has the ability to bind the molecules of biotin making this B vitamin unavailable for the body's use.
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