About Biotin

Lucy: Has anyone used or heard of the benefits of biotin supplementation for yeast? At the Flora Balance Site, it says,

“Biotin helps to prevent Candida Albicans from transforming from yeast to fungal form and is created by normal flora in the intestinal tract which are most likely suppressed in the case of a Candida Albicans Overgrowth.” http://www.flora-balance.com

They recommend 5mg which seems a little excessive, but willing to try anything that will stop it in it tracks ahead of time.

Jane: Hi, Lucy, I’m someone who tried biotin earlier in my illness and it made me much worse. I got horrible brain fog and couldn’t do anything but sit in a chair. Couldn’t follow a thought through. I still haven’t tried it again, tho’ am better over a year later. I also think in my case that the high mercury levels perhaps were affecting things. I think the yeast/bad bacteria were “recycling” any mercury in the bowel and the biotin helped them live in the unrooted stage. I read somewhere that biotin feeds the yeast in the bud stage, but keeps it from putting out roots.

Polly: Dr. Shaw recommends that you wait on supplementing biotin until you have brought the yeast levels down, because biotin might increase yeast growth. [20] If you take it, try it on an empty stomach with some garlic to inhibit the yeast or take it under the tongue.

Shelley: I have read recommendations for the B vitamin biotin from 1 to 5 to 10 mg a day. At present I am taking *Solgar at 600 mcg. My GP/MD said that if candida is embedded in one’s intestines, it is hard to get at. He suggests using biotin to get at the yeast. Yeast like biotin and will be drawn to it in one’s intestines. Then kill it with an antifungal.

Franca: I’m so glad that at least one medical practitioner somewhere has confirmed my suspicion that when I took Diflucan, it was like mowing a lawn: It cut off the tops of the yeast/bacteria, but left the roots embedded in my body! I think what you (or your doc) are trying to say, if I’m not mistaken, is that biotin will actually cause the yeast, root and all, to leave the intestinal wall it’s living in, to take a closer look at the biotin. This is when you zap it with the antifungal, yes? Am I the only one who’s reminded of that Whack-A-Gopher game that you find at fairs??

Polly: That is funny, and important. I’m sure the effectiveness of the antifungals that we use will depend on the form that the yeast has taken. Yet things never seem to be simple. Biotin might not be that important to the particular yeast that you harbor. One study showed that added biotin will induce the yeast called Candida albicans to convert from the invasive root-like mycelial form into the bud form, and yet another study showed that biotin wasn’t that important to the form takenglucose was the main factor. [21] The different experimental results may be due to something as simple as a different strain of Candida albicans. Different strains of Candida albicans have different conditions under which they will change form. [22]

Michael R. McGinnis and Stephen K. Tyring wrote an article about the different forms that fungus could take. [23] Some fungus can be bud-like yeast under one condition, and act like an invasive mold under another condition. This fungus is called dimorphic. Temperature is the most important factor in determining the form dimorphic fungus will take. At temperatures like found in the body, dimorphic fungus tend to remain a yeast. Other factors that influence the form are carbon dioxide, pH, zinc, cysteine, sulfhydryl-containing compounds, and serum transferrin (iron binding compounds).

Even though biotin might not be that influential to the form certain yeast take, it is still probably very important that we get some biotin into us. Normally, our flora makes much more biotin than our body requires. However, when the flora is destroyed, we can become deficient in biotin. Also, the increased arabinose due to yeast overgrowth may cause a functional deficiency of biotin.

Marilyn in Seattle: This is from *All Your Health Questions Answered by Maureen Kennedy Salaman: p 667

“Biotin is a B vitamin whose primary role is to modulate fat metabolism. When liver damage occurs, the cells swell and become infiltrated with fat. This fat, when present, keeps the cells from healing. Biotin works well to remove fatty deposits resulting from toxins.”

This woman is also totally hepped on *Kyolic liquid garlic extract and I think I will get some of that as it is good for so many things — including she says, the fact that good bacteria thrive on it! I LIKE this book — taken in its entirety it has mucho info that is really educational.

Jenny: Wow, thanks. That sure makes me feel goodanytime I hear of fat leaving my body, plus my liver getting better. BIOTIN TO THE RESCUE!!!

Polly: That is interesting. I didn’t know biotin was a lipotropic agent.

Kippy: What are lipotropic agents (I know, I know secret agents for the government of lipotropia)? Are they found in herbal remedies?

Polly: According to the dictionary, lipotropic means promoting the physiologic utilization of fat. The context I’ve seen it used in refers to removing fat from the liver. Lecithin, choline, TMG (tri-methyl-glycine), methionine, threonine, milk thistle, and lipoic acid are considered lipotropics. Recently pantethine (dosage 600 mg per day) has been added to the list of lipotropic agents that heal the liver. [24]

Shelley: Does Maureen Kennedy Salaman talk about dosage? That is my big question with biotin. Thanks.

Marilyn in Seattle: Well, there’s a hole in the book there because she is recommending a B complex since all Bs work together. She does have one interesting bit on diabetes and biotin. It seems that when a group with type 2 insulin dependent diabetes were given 16 milligrams of biotin per day for one week, they saw their blood glucose level drop. Another test was with 9 milligrams of biotin per day for 2 months and all 43 participants saw their glucose levels fall to nearly half their original levels. So long term users saw more benefit…I wonder what role biotin/candida has to play in hypoglycemia??? Still working on the IHMD.

Note: IHMD is a forum joke. It means In-Home-Medical-Degree.

Polly: In one of the newer Prevention books, I saw similar doses of biotin recommended for carpal tunnel syndrome and other ailments.

Jennifer: I found a product called Biotin 5000 Yeast Free by Nutricology/Allergy Research Group (website http://www.nutricology.com and phone (800) 782-4274). It has 5mg of Biotin per capsule. Most Biotin supplements seem to be measured in mcg, which is a much smaller measurement.

Later — Polly: Many of us have a deficit of the B vitamin biotin, and we are employing large doses of biotin to correct this problem. However, some caution must be exercised. Biotin must be balanced with inositol, which is another B vitamin. This is a quote from *Raymond Peat’s book, Nutrition for Women, page 50:

“Very large doses of biotin cause experimental animals to develop fatty livers (developing into liver cancer), but this effect can be offset by feeding the animal another B vitamin inositol.”

Those with multiple sclerosis or those who have antibodies to myelin protein (as found in many of the autistic) might also want to pay attention to this other quote from the same book, page 52:

“Biotin is involved in the synthesis of fats in the nervous system, and so should probably be given special attention in the MS diet.”

Biotin is necessary for the proper use of the branch chain amino acids. Branch chain amino acids are helpful in cases of hypoglycemia and they are depleted when the body needs to remove lots of ammonia, so it isn’t too surprising that a lack of biotin will cause hypoglycemia and excess ammonia. A biotin deficit can also lead to depression, muscle pain, fungal infections of the skin, rashes, nausea, sleepiness, acidosis, fine and brittle hair, dry skin, hair loss, seborrheic dermatitis and a poor fatty acid profile due to interference with the desaturase enzymes. It serves as a carrier of carbon dioxide. A deficit of biotin can be caused by prolonged antibiotic treatment, the ingestion of raw egg whites, or the use of certain anticonvulsant drugs. [25]

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