Biotin, also called Vitamin B7, is a vital part of a healthy metabolism and creating important enzymes. Biotin is most often used to strengthen hair and nails and is therefore also called Vitamin H (for hair).
There is generally no reason for anyone to worry about his/her daily biotin consumption because if a variety of foods are eaten throughout the day, one can easily obtain sufficient amount of Biotin. But, if you still want to eliminate any risks by making sure you are getting enough, continue reading.
I would first like to point out that except for fortified foods, vegan foods do contain less Biotin than non-vegan foods like fishes, milk products, meat and meat products, eggs, etc. Some vegans may try to not lay focus on this fact, but I do not like to be biased because that creates a false image of a diet pattern. So, if you are a vegetarian or a non-vegetarian, you most definitely should not worry about Biotin.
“Biotin deficiency is very rare. The amounts needed are small, a very wide range of foods contain biotin, and intestinal bacteria synthesize biotin, which is then absorbed by the host animal. For that reason, statutory agencies in many countries, for example the USA and Australia, have not formally established a recommended daily intake of biotin. Instead, an Adequate Intake (AI) is identified based on the theory that average intake meets needs.” – read more about Biotin on Wikipedia
Now, there’s no recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for Biotin. There are only suggested adequate intake levels. To make sure you are getting enough Biotin daily, these are the recommendations:
- From birth to 12 months: 7 mcg
- From 1 to 3 years: 8 mcg
- From 4 to 8 years: 12 mcg
- From 9 to 13 years: 20 mcg
- From 14 to 18 years: 25 mcg
- Over age 18: 30 mcg
- During pregnancy: 30 mcg
- If breastfeeding: 35 mcg
So, as you can clearly see, most of us require only around 30 micrograms of Biotin, which can be easily consumed from real vegan food sources without buying any supplements. Some school of thoughts may argue that we need more Biotin daily (around 100 to 200 mcg!), but I do not share their opinion. However, you may agree to disagree. If that is the case, it MAY become tough to get enough Biotin on a vegan diet if you do not eat nutritious food all day long, and you may need to buy a supplement. Please note that I do not advocate doing so.
How Much Do You Get
Below is the list of easily available foods with the approximate amount of biotin they contain per 100 grams of that food:
- Wheat Flour (can be consumed by eating roti, whole wheat bread, etc.) – 9 to 25 mcg
- Mushrooms – 16 mcg
- Fruits (like bananas, raspberries, strawberries, avocados, etc.) – 2 mcg
- Cabbage – 15 mcg
- Soy – 60 mcg (not very sure; please confirm)
- Nuts (like almonds, walnuts, etc.) – 10 mcg
- Rice (unpolished) – 46 mcg
Please note that the bioavailability of biotin is very different from the type of food: thus, for example, biotin in corn and soybean meal is complete utilizing while biotin from wheat flour is almost not absorbable. But do not make this a thing that bothers you. As you are eating a variety of foods, you will do just fine. The exact biotin content in any food is not very accurately stated because it varies a lot, even in the same type of foods! That being said, as you can see, just eating your regular foods will provide you with sufficient biotin!
Web pages used for reference:
If you have any doubts or you want to point out something in this article, please feel free to comment below. Share this article with your friends who are obsessed with fulfilling each and every micro-nutrient needs of their body, daily!