Have you ever brushed your hair and a handful of hair comes out? You may start to panic and immediately Google ways to reduce thinning hair. Tons of ads for biotin supplements will likely come up, promising longer, stronger hair immediately. Turns out, those supplements aren’t doing much if your body already gets enough biotin in your diet.
Biotin supplements claim to help you get healthier hair, skin, and nails. Biotin is just another name for vitamin B7, which your body does need in the form of food and supplements. Biotin helps your cells convert food into energy. It also helps the infrastructure of keratin, a protein found in hair, skin, and nails.
Biotin is found in many foods and your body really doesn’t need much of it. The most common food sources are eggs, bananas, whole grains, soy, seeds, nuts, salmon, and pork. According to Healthline, your body only needs 30 to 100 micrograms per day and biotin deficiencies are very rare. If you are wondering if you need extra biotin in your diet or not, talk to your doctor. You may indeed need supplements. If you do, gummy vitamins are a great alternative for those who do not like to take pills.
Taking supplements and getting extra biotin really doesn’t have any benefits if your body doesn’t need it. There is no strong evidence that extra doses of biotin improve hair, skin, and nails unless you are deficient (which again, is very rare).
Excess biotin or B vitamins are just flushed out in your urine, so that big bottle of gummy vitamins is likely just getting flushed away. There is also a side effect that comes with taking too much biotin. Even small amounts can mess up your lab tests. If you are trying to get tested for hormone or thyroid issues, cardiac troponin levels, or vitamin D levels, excess biotin in your system can lead to misdiagnosis.
Gummy vitamins have clear benefits including their desirable taste and the nutrients they provide. It is clear that women may benefit from supplements, including those who don’t eat certain foods, struggle to absorb some nutrients, or have increased nutrient needs. Gummy vitamins are a good alternative to pills for women who have challenges taking full dose supplements on a daily basis because their added sugar flavor makes them taste better and they are easier to chew.
Even though gummy vitamins may be a good idea for certain people, they have some downsides. They typically contain added sugars, sugar alcohols or food coloring. The sugar is what makes them taste so good but may contain 3 grams of sugar and 15 calories per gummy. Consuming too much added sugar can have a negative long-term effect including obesity, heart disease and dental cavities. That is why the American Heart Association (AHA) suggests no more than 9 teaspoons (37.5 grams) of added sugar per day for men and no more than 6 teaspoons (25 grams) per day for women…
While the added sugar in gummy vitamins may not seem like a large amount, it can contribute to excessive sugar consumption — especially if you take more than one gummy vitamin per day and eat other foods with added sugars.
The biggest challenge with gummies is they may contain less nutrients than needed. One of the reasons is that manufacturers cannot pack in as many vitamins and minerals when they must add sugars, colorings, and other filler compounds that are used to maintain a gummy texture. For example, a popular brand of adult gummy vitamins has only 11 nutrients compared to over 30 nutrients in the same brand’s multivitamin.
So, in a nutshell, hair gummy vitamins may be made with added sugars, sugar alcohols, artificial colorings, fillers and may contain fewer nutrients than you think and can be easy to overeat.
To wrap this up, your best option is always a healthy and balanced diet incorporating all the daily nutrients your body needs. If you can, augment your diet with a clinically proven daily supplement that gives you the full spectrum of the vitamins and minerals your body craves without the unhealthy side effects.