The side effects of biotin that you need to know about

Recently, there have been a number of stories in the news about biotin, a nutrient, commonly referred to as the “beauty vitamin.” Taking biotin or vitamin B7 supplements has gained popularity due to the role they play in helping to grow and maintain strong, healthy nails, hair, and skin. Some common side effects from taking biotin are unwanted hair growth on the chin, back, and breasts, and an allergic reaction that appears as a skin rash.

New information is emerging regarding a more serious side effect which is that biotin may interfere with medical testing. High doses of biotin can alter the results of diagnostic lab tests for thyroid hormones, cardiac enzymes, and even certain cancer screenings. Having elevated levels of biotin in your system may interact with lab tests to the point where it results in a false negative or positive and, therefore, leads to a misdiagnosis or incorrect treatment.

How much biotin are you consuming?

Biotin is an essential vitamin that plays a major part in the process by which your body forms collagen. It is difficult to get enough through diet alone which is why many multivitamins contain it. It’s important, however, to make sure you’re aware of the amount of biotin in the supplements that you’re taking. For example, if you’re taking a multivitamin along with a B Vitamin supplement, you may be unintentionally consuming too much biotin.

Thyroid testing and other tests actually contain biotin in the lab test itself, and if you have a high level of biotin in your body, the combination can skew the results. This interference may affect cardiac enzymes as well which are used to determine whether a person is having a heart attack.

So is eliminating biotin intake the answer, and if so, does that mean you have to give up on the idea of stronger hair and nails?

You have better options

There are actually supplements that contain biotin alternatives that can help you reach your goals without worrying about negative side effects. For people who have medical conditions negatively affected by or allergies to biotin, silica is an excellent alternative. It serves the same function in the body, is better tolerated in general, and is not known to interact with medical tests.

Read more on the Vibrant Nutraceuticals site about the advantages of taking natural supplements, such as Silica Plus.