I have received a couple of comments asking about biotin. One comment in particular stated that 'it has been scientifically proven that Biotin can indeed increase the rate of hair growth -- at 5000mcg/5mg per day'
I asked the commenter to give me a reference (that is - a scientific paper) for this but as yet I have not received a response. I therefore decided to do my own bit of fact finding.
I have found multiple references where
1. In people who have biotin deficiency, low doses of biotin (0.3mg daily) can help improve the quality of hair and increase hair growth (not above normal growth rate but greater than the slow rate due to the deficiency). (Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, pp 97-102, 1985)
2. Children taking certain antiepileptic medication can suffer hair loss as a side effect and this can be treated with biotin supplementation (again because they become deficient in biotin and therefore supplementation works to improve the hair to normal levels). (European Journal of Paediatric Neurology, pp439-443,2009)
In short all the articles that I read seem to indicate that deficiency in biotin can lead to dry brittle hair, dry skin and brittle nails (Brain and Development, pp405-410, 2009). I did not read anywhere that biotin accelerates hair growth beyond what is normally expected. I did not find any evidence that high doses of biotin as stated by the commenter are necessary.
The only place that I could find to substantiate the comment was a website where someone sites a hair forum as the source of information. This is what I would class as anectodal evidence (i.e he said/she said - could be true/could be false) and not scientific evidence. If anyone out there has seen or heard of a scientific paper, please do comment and quote it, I will definitely check it out!
Do you believe what you read in forums? If so, why? Do pictures convince you or is it about the length of time the person posting in the forum has been present? Why do you believe or disbelieve forum information?