Skip to main content

Health Encyclopedia

Search the Health Encyclopedia

Pantothenic acid and biotin

Definition

Pantothenic acid and biotin are types of B vitamins. They are water-soluble, which means that the body can't store them. If the body can't use all of the vitamin, the extra vitamins leave the body through the urine. These vitamins must be replaced in the body every day.

Alternative Names

Pantothenic acid; Pantethine; Vitamin B5; Vitamin B7

Function

Pantothenic acid and biotin are needed for growth. They help the body break down and use food. This is called metabolism. They are both required for making fatty acids.

Pantothenic acid also plays a role in the production of hormones and cholesterol. It is also used in the conversion of pyruvate.

Food Sources

Pantothenic acid is found in foods that are good sources of B vitamins, including the following:

  • Animal proteins
  • Avocado
  • Broccoli, kale, and other vegetables in the cabbage family
  • Eggs
  • Legumes and lentils
  • Milk
  • Mushrooms
  • Organ meats
  • Poultry
  • White and sweet potatoes
  • Whole-grain cereals
  • Yeast

Biotin is found in foods that are good sources of B vitamins, including:

  • Cereal
  • Chocolate
  • Egg yolk
  • Legumes
  • Milk
  • Nuts
  • Organ meats (liver, kidney)
  • Pork
  • Yeast

Side Effects

Pantothenic acid deficiency is very rare, but can cause a tingling feeling in the feet (paresthesia). Biotin deficiency may lead to muscle pain, dermatitis, or glossitis (swelling of the tongue).

Large doses of pantothenic acid do not cause symptoms, other than (possibly) diarrhea. There are no known toxic symptoms from biotin.

Recommendations

REFERENCE INTAKES

Recommendations for pantothenic acid and biotin, as well as other nutrients, are provided in the Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) developed by the Food and Nutrition Board at the Institute of Medicine. DRI is a term for a set of reference intakes that are used to plan and assess the nutrient intakes of healthy people. These values, which vary by age and gender, include:

  • Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA): average daily level of intake that is enough to meet the nutrient needs of nearly all (97% to 98%) healthy people.
  • Adequate Intake (AI): established when there is not enough evidence to develop an RDA. It is set at a level that is thought to ensure enough nutrition.

Dietary Reference Intakes for pantothenic acid:

  • Age 0 to 6 months: 1.7* milligrams per day (mg/day)
  • Age 7 to 12 months: 1.8* mg/day
  • Age 1 to 3 years: 2* mg/day
  • Age 4 to 8 years: 3* mg/day
  • Age 9 to 13 years: 4* mg/day
  • Age 14 and older: 5* mg/day
  • 6 mg/day during pregnancy
  • Lactation: 7 mg/day

*Adequate Intake (AI)

Dietary Reference Intakes for biotin:

  • Age 0 to 6 months: 5* micrograms per day (mcg/day)
  • Age 7 to 12 months: 6* mcg/day
  • Age 1 to 3 years: 8* mcg/day
  • Age 4 to 8 years: 12* mcg/day
  • Age 9 to 13 years: 20* mcg/day
  • Age 14 to 18 years: 25* mcg/day
  • 19 and older: 30* mcg/day

*Adequate Intake (AI)

The best way to get the daily requirement of essential vitamins is to eat a balanced diet that contains a variety of foods.

Specific recommendations depend on age, gender, and other factors (such as pregnancy). Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding need higher amounts. Ask your health care provider which amount is best for you.

References

Hemilä H, Chalker E. Vitamin C for preventing and treating the common cold. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2013;(1):CD000980. PMID: 23440782 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23440782.

Institute of Medicine, Food and Nutrition Board. Dietary Reference Intakes for Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium, and Carotenoids. Washington, DC: National Academies Press; 2000. PMID: 25077263 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25077263.

Mason JB. Vitamins, trace minerals, and other micronutrients. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 218.

Salwen MJ. Vitamins and trace elements. In: McPherson RA, Pincus MR, eds. Henry's Clinical Diagnosis and Management by Laboratory Methods. 23rd ed. St Louis, MO: Elsevier; 2017:chap 26.

Review Date:1/7/2017
Reviewed By:Emily Wax, RD, The Brooklyn Hospital Center, Brooklyn, NY. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997-A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

adam.com

The Agency for Health Care Administration (Agency) and this website do not claim the information on, or referred to by, this site is error free. This site may include links to websites of other government agencies or private groups. Our Agency and this website do not control such sites and are not responsible for their content. Reference to or links to any other group, product, service, or information does not mean our Agency or this website approves of that group, product, service, or information.

Additionally, while health information provided through this website may be a valuable resource for the public, it is not designed to offer medical advice. Talk with your doctor about medical care questions you may have.

Health
Outcome Data

No data available for this condition/procedure.

Health Encyclopedia

More Features

We Appreciate Your Feedback!
1. Did you find this information useful?
         Yes
         No
2. Would you recommend this website to family and friends?
         Yes
         No