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- Infants with low biotinidase levels—Infants who are born with low levels of this enzyme may develop a deficiency. There is some debate among doctors about whether infants should be screened at birth for a deficiency of biotinidase.
- People who smoke—Smoking accelerates biotin metabolism, which can eventually lead to a deficiency.
- People taking anticonvulsant drugs—These medications can inhibit the absorption of biotin or block the action of biotinidase.
- People who eat a lot of raw eggs—A protein called avidin found in raw egg whites can bind biotin and inhibit its absorption. Cooked eggs do not present this problem. (Note: Eating raw eggs also increases the risk of food-borne infection.)
- Pregnant women—There is some preliminary evidence that biotin deficiency can occur during a normal pregnancy, so women may consider taking a multi-vitamin that contains biotin.
Major Food Sources
|Egg, cooked||1 large||13-25|
|Cheddar cheese||1 ounce||0.4-2|
|Whole Wheat bread||1 slice||0.02-6|
Tips for Increasing Your Biotin Intake
- Have a bowl of shredded wheat, whole grain cereal, or oatmeal for breakfast.
- Make an omelet with 2 eggs, mushrooms, cheese, and assorted vegetables.
- Add a hard boiled egg and some shredded cheese to a leafy green salad.
Try this recipe for black bean and crab salad:
- Mix together 1 pint frozen corn (thawed), 1 (8 oz) can of black beans (drained and rinsed), ¼ cup of red peppers (chopped), 1 (4 oz) can of green chilies (drained), ¼ cup minced cilantro, 4 green onions (chopped), and 12 ounces of chopped artificial crab meat.
- For the dressing, add 1 teaspoon of cumin and ¼ teaspoon of black pepper, to 2 cloves of minced/chopped garlic. Mix into a paste and then add 2 teaspoons each of white wine vinegar, fresh lime juice, and water. Mix well and then whisk in 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Pour dressing over the corn and bean mixture and stir well. Top with 2 thinly sliced jalapeno peppers. Makes 10 servings.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD, FAAP
- Review Date: 03/2017
- Update Date: 03/03/2017