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B1 – Thiamine

What is Thiamine (Vitamin B1)?

Thiamine, also called B1, is a B-complex vitamin that is also water-soluble.

What does Thiamine (Vitamin B1) do?

Thiamine was the first B vitamin that is why is commonly referred to as B1. It is a vitamin used by the body to break down sugars in the diet. Your body needs it to form energy for the cells to use. And because it is used to strengthen the immune system by improving the body’s ability to withstand stressful conditions, some may call it the anti-stress vitamin. Thiamine is also connected with and useful in many of the body’s functions, including but not limited to; the function of the muscles and the nervous system; as well as the metabolism of carbohydrates. Thiamine is used as part of a treatment for metabolic disorders and in alcoholic individuals.

Where is Thiamine (B1) found?

Thiamine is found in both plants and animals. It is found in greater concentrations in cereal’s germ and outer layers, as well as in beef, yeast, pork, pulses, whole grains, and nuts.

What happens when someone is Thiamine (Vitamin B1) deficient?

Beriberi is a nervous system ailment that is caused by a thiamine deficiency. It’s however extremely rare to be lacking in thiamine, even though people who are alcoholics, those undergoing dialysis treatment, sufferers of Crohn’s disease, and anorexics, may incur a deficiency. Symptoms of a deficiency are depression, extreme fatigue, constipation, irritability, abdominal discomfort, an enlarged liver, and edema. Having this deficiency may also cause people to have a loss of their appetites as well as have trouble digesting carbs. When this occurs, it makes way for pyruvic acid to accumulate in the bloodstream, causing heart damage, difficulty breathing, and a loss of mental alertness. With an absence of thiamin; a person might even experience pain and sensitivity, nervousness, poor coordination, numbness of the hands and feet, tingling sensations, severe weight loss, weak and sore muscles, and general weakness. Because of the minute amount of thiamine storage in the body, it can be diminished rather quickly, and most times, in about 14 days.

Helpful food sources, supplements and additional benefits of Thiamine (Vitamin B1)

Dietary sources of thiamine include seafood, beef, brewer’s yeast, egg-yolk, legumes, nuts, milk, oats, pork, oranges, rice, wheat, seeds, yeast, and whole-grain cereals. Vitamin B1 is available in chewable multivitamins for adults and children as well as liquid, and like other vitamins in the B complex family, it can be individually sold. It is readily available in multiple forms, including soft gels, tablets, and lozenges. It may also be called by its pharmacy names; thiamine mononitrate or thiamine hydrochloride.

Thiamin is believed to be helpful for motion sickness when traveling by sea and air, and that it’s also an insect repellant when the skin excretes it. Studies show that thiamine is also used for AIDS and boosting the immune system, along with preventing cervical cancer and progression of kidney disease in patients with type 2diabetes. Although thiamine or vitamin B1 is used to treat and aid in the prevention of certain kinds of illnesses and diseases, taking this vitamin with certain other drugs or medications may cause an unwanted reaction; and as with any drug or supplement, consult a health care professional before use.

 

AIs (Adequate Intakes)

Infants
0-6 months
7-12 months
Milligrams per Day
0.2
0.3

RDAs (Recommended Dietary Allowances)

Children
1-3 years
4-8 years
Milligrams per Day0.5
0.6
Males
9-13 years
14-18 years
19-30 years
31-50 years
50-70 years
> 70 years

0.9
1.2
1.2
1.2
1.2
1.2
Females
9-13 years
14-18 years
19-30 years
31-50 years
50-70 years
> 70 years

0.9
1.0
1.1
1.1
1.1
1.1
Pregnancy
< 19 years
19-30 years
31-50 years

1.4
1.4
1.4
Lactation
< 19 years
19-30 years
31-50 years

1.4
1.4
1.4

Source: USDA Dietary Reference Intakes