How much biotin is safe?

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DEAR DR. GOTT: You stated in a previous article that biotin was needed for healthy hair and to help stop hair loss. How much biotin is safe to take? I take 1,000 milligrams twice daily, but I lose a lot of hair every time I wash it, which is every other day.

DEAR READER: Biotin, otherwise known as vitamin B7, is produced naturally in the intestines. When the body doesn’t manufacture adequate amounts, hair loss and other conditions develop. This can occur because of excessive exercise, too much alcohol, seizure disorders, lactation and aging.

Biotin supplements are commonly available in 1,000-microgram or 5,000-microgram dosages. My guess is that you are taking micrograms, not milligrams. The National Institutes of Health indicates an adequate intake for people 18 and over is 30 micrograms. Dosing depends on health, age and other conditions. There is a lack of scientific evidence to confirm an appropriate range of dosing for this product. Speak with your physician for clarification.

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