Blood pressure is the force exerted by flowing blood on the walls of the arteries. It is important to maintain optimum levels of this pressure because an abnormally high value can make your heart work very hard and increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases, while low blood pressure, or hypotension, can increase the risk of anemia, fatigue, vision loss and headache. A healthy diet and exercise, along with certain medications and supplements such as biotin may help regulate the blood pressure and prevent the complications associated with it.
Biotin is part of the water-soluble vitamin B complex. It plays an important role in the activation of enzymes in the body and can be obtained from foods such as egg yolk, liver and yeast. Biotin deficiency is rare. Most people require only between 5 to 35 mcg of the vitamin per day, according to Oregon State University's Linus Pauling Institute. In case of a deficiency, your doctor may recommend biotin supplements that are available as capsules, tablets and syrups. The supplements may also be used to prevent birth defects and to treat diabetes, hair loss and brittle fingernails. The recommended dose may vary, depending on your age and overall health. Your doctor can establish a regimen that is right for you.
High Blood Pressure
Biotin can reduce the thickening of the arteries and lower blood pressure in hypertensive laboratory animals, says a study published in the April 2008 issue of "The British Journal of Nutrition." Another study in the January 2003 issue of the "Journal of Human Hypertension" reveals that reduced intake of B vitamins such as biotin and folic acid increased the risk of hypertension South African children. A clinical trial in the in Spring 2007 edition of the "Journal of Cardiometabolic Syndrome" points out that biotin along with chromium can help lower the blood cholesterol levels, which may in turn reduce the risk of high blood pressure and other cardiovascular diseases.
Biotin supplements are generally safe and well-tolerated when used at recommended doses. There are no toxic reactions associated with the supplements. They may, however, interfere with certain antibiotics and anti-convulsant medications.
Although you do not require a prescription to buy biotin supplements in the United States, you must talk to a doctor before using them to lower your blood pressure. Also, make sure that the supplement has been tested for safety and efficacy and has been approved either by the Food and Drug Administration or the United States Pharmacopeial Convention.
Is This an Emergency?
- Linus Pauling Institute: Biotin
- "British Journal of Nutrition"; Antihypertensive Effect of Biotin in Stroke-Prone Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats; M. Watanabe-Kamiyama, et al.; April 2008
- "Journal of Human Hypertension"; Dietary Risk Markers that Contribute to the Aetiology of Hypertension in Black South African Children: The THUSA BANA Study; A.E. Schutte, et al.; January 2003
- "Journal of Cardiometabolic Syndrome"; Combination of Chromium and Biotin Improves Coronary Risk Factors in Hypercholesterolemic Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Placebo-Controlled, Double-Blind Randomized Clinical Trial; C. Albarracin, et al.; Spring 2007