What is Vitamin B1?

Group B vitamins are essential substances for the human body. Without their participation, there is no physiological process, be it the formation of muscle tissues and bone structures, the normal activity of organs and systems, metabolic and biochemical reactions and much more.

Opens a list of essential components related to the B vitamins, thiamine-vitamin B1, without which full vital activity and the preservation of health is not possible.In terms of biochemistry, vitamin B1 is a crystalline substance that does not it has no color or odor.

It is extremely unstable and breaks down quickly when exposed to high temperatures. Because the position of molecules in a complex atom can have different shapes, vitamin B1 is classified into several subtypes:

Because the position of molecules in a complex atom can have different shapes, vitamin B1 is classified into several subtypes:

  • thiamine,
  • thiamine pyrophosphate,
  • aneurin,

In the human body, thiamine pyrophosphate is the most important, since it is this form that participates in many physiological processes. However, the most common subtype found in food is thiamine.

This dissonance in no way affects the replenishment of the deficiency, as thiamine is easily converted to thiamine pyrophosphate directly in the body.

Upon entering the blood, the vitamin molecules reach the liver, where under the influence of magnesium they bind with phosphoric acid, turning in a process into a coenzyme form of the substance, which compensates for the functions of vitamin b1 that are given to it. assign.

Like all B vitamins, thiamine is water soluble, and therefore cannot accumulate in the body in sufficient quantity to create a safety cushion in the event of a subsequent deficiency.

This means that foods rich in vitamin B1 should be on the table every day; otherwise, the risk is great in your own experience to get acquainted with the unpleasant and even dangerous symptoms characteristic of hypovitamin B1.

Entering the body with food, vitamin B1 is easily metabolized in the intestine: about 60% of the total amount of the incoming substance is absorbed in the small intestine, and the rest is broken down under the influence of a special enzyme. secreted by the microflora of the gastrointestinal tract.

However, these figures are quite conditional and reflect the whole picture only if the state of the digestive tract is ideal: dysbiosis, various diseases of the gastric and intestinal mucosa, poor nutrition and alcohol addiction in some cases reduce the absorption of vitamin almost 3 times.

In addition, part of the vitamin is synthesized directly in the body, however, this amount is not enough to compensate for the daily need.

That is why it is necessary to carefully consider the daily diet , including products with vitamin B1, only in this way can you provide the body with a vital substance.

Thiamine, also known as aneurin due to its antineuritic properties, is a water-soluble vitamin essential for physical and mental health, which has beneficial effects on the nervous, digestive system, but also on the muscles and even the heart.

Physical properties: of vitamin B1

Vitamin B1 is sensitive to the action of heat, in a humid environment, to light. It is also quickly annihilated in contact with sugar, caffeine, tannins contained in certain plants, alcohol and nicotine.

Vitamin B1 plays a coenzyme role in decarboxylation reactions, essential for protein and carbohydrate metabolism.

It is essential for brain activity and peripheral nerves. Another type of connection between vitamin B1 and the nervous system involves its role in the production of acetylcholine.

This molecule, a neurotransmitter, is used by the nervous system that transmits messages between nerves and muscles.

Acetylcholine cannot be produced without adequate intake of vitamin B1. Vitamin B1 relieves pain felt (in the treatment of shingles).

Sources of Vitamin B1:

One of the sources that are rich in vitamin B1 include pork, beef liver, certain species of fish (eel, tuna), whole grains and whole wheat bread, brown rice, sunflower seeds, walnuts, peanuts, dried legumes ( beans, lentils) and potatoes.

Functions of thiamine B1 in the body

It is difficult to overestimate the importance of vitamin B1 in the vital activity of the body, since this substance participates in many important processes.

The most significant function of thiamine is its participation in carbohydrate metabolism. The vitamin inhibits lactic and pyruvic acid, the excess of which affects the body with a decrease in performance, apathy, nervous exhaustion and an inability to respond adequately to daily stress.

Thanks to these processes, thiamine has quietly been dubbed a vigor vitamin, as it is a mandatory component of complementary therapy in depression, nervous disorders, fatigue, and stress.

Thiamine also participates in the prevention of liver pathologies and gallbladder calculus disease. Without the proper amount of this substance, the natural synthesis of unsaturated fatty acids is inhibited, which in turn leads to the interruption of the functioning of the organs and systems.

The properties of vitamin B1 have found their use in dermatology. The anti-inflammatory effect that thiamine has on the skin can reduce the symptoms of various dermatological ailments, such as neurodermatitis, violation of the integrity of the skin and mucosa, psoriasis, eczema, and dozens of other diseases.

Having passed the experience of his colleagues, vitamin B1 has brought into cosmetology practice, since this substance favorably affects the condition of the skin and hair, slows down the processes of cell degeneration and evens out the manifestations of early aging.

The indispensable effect of thiamine and in general strengthening therapy. Adequate doses of vitamin B1 derived from food positively affect the immune status, improve digestion, the work of the cardiovascular and endocrine systems.

The regular use of this substance reduces the indicators of “harmful” cholesterol in the blood, improves the functions of the neuromuscular complex, nourishes and protects the tissue from destructive external effects.

Vitamin B1 deficiency:

Vitamin B1 deficiency occurs especially in case of excessive consumption of sweets, alcohol, and in case of overwork and infectious diseases.

This deficiency causes:

  • Heart disease,
  • Brain damage,
  • Anorexia,
  • Anxiety,
  • Asthenia,
  • Confusion,
  • Mental depression,
  • Damaged memory,
  • Gastritis,
  • Liver failure,
  • Loss of coordination,
  • motor skills,
  • Nerve pain,
  • Decreased immunity,
  • Decreased muscle tone
  • Visual disturbances
  • Serious mental disorders.

A severe vitamin B1 deficiency causes beri-beri disease, common in developing countries where rice is the staple food.

Rare diseases in industrialized countries, occurs only in people who have a very unbalanced diet, such as alcoholics or some older people. Beri-beri first manifests itself in fatigue and weight loss.

The disease can continue to evolve in two ways:

Beri-dry beri, which mainly affects the nerves and muscles, has numbness, a burning sensation in the calves and muscle atrophy as its main symptoms.

In the most severe cases, the sick person can no longer walk, or even stand up.

What You Should Know About Hypovitaminosis B1

Insufficient intake of vitamin B1 with food involves many unpleasant symptoms of varying degrees of severity. The first of hypovitaminosis suffers the nervous system, and then the manifestations begin to affect other physiological processes.

The “alarming calls” in this case should be the following deviations: rapid and unmotivated fatigue, shortness of breath at the slightest physical effort, and in severe cases – and without such;

Irritability, aggression, anxiety flare-ups, and panic attacks;
sleep disorders, depressive state, memory and attention impairment;

Decreased appetite, digestive disorder (diarrhea or, conversely, frequent constipation), nausea and, as a consequence, acute weight loss;

Muscle weakness, poor coordination of movements, painful sensations in the calf muscles, swelling of the upper and lower extremities;

If you do not take any action and review the menu, supplying it with sources of vitamin B1, hypovitaminosis can develop into a serious disease-Beri-Beri-accompanied by paralysis, migraine attacks, heart disease, atrophy of the muscular skeleton and general decrease of the strengths.

Symptoms of hyper vitamin B1

Excess vitamin B1 is quite a rare phenomenon. Natural thiamine obtained from food does not cause a negative reaction in any amount: the excess of the substance is simply excreted from the body, without causing any harm.

In rare cases, the side effect is only possible with high-dose synthetic vitamin injections, which can cause a hypersensitivity reaction.

This condition is accompanied by symptoms of intoxication (increased temperature, weakness, dizziness), itching, and pain at the injection site. As a general rule, the symptoms of hypervitaminosis wash off on their own and do not require specific treatment.

Thiamine in pure form is found in almost all plants, however, the degree of saturation and, as a result, the value for the body can be absolutely different.

For the first time, thiamine has been isolated from the husks of rice grains, but later scientists have shown that brown brown rice is not the most significant source of the most valuable substance.

Much more thiamine is found in pine nut and honeysuckle kernels. However, the variety of natural sources of vitamin B1 is so great that making a vitaminized menu rich in thiamine will be easier.

Vitamin B1 excess:

Excess vitamin B1 is rapidly excreted in the urine. This vitamin is not stored in the body. The only known cases of thiamine overdose are those injected with thiamine.

Thiamine injection can cause anaphylactic reactions Taking a dose 100 times higher than recommended can lead to: impaired respiratory system, insomnia, general weakness, rapid pulse, headache, irritability.

In extreme cases, an overdose of vitamin B1 can be fatal. In addition, excess vitamin B1 can lead to the loss of the other B-complex vitamins in the body.

Errors that lead to a decrease in vitamin B1 levels

Do not think that eating a handful of sunflower seeds or a couple of cedar nuts can not worry about the level of thiamine in the blood: the need for this substance, like its digestibility, can vary significantly depending on the physiological characteristics of the body, addictions and the lifestyle of the person himself.

The most common mistakes boil down to the following: Thiamine breaks down quickly on heat treatment. This shows once again that fresh foods are much more useful and nutritious than cooked ones. In an acidic environment, vitamin B1 is more resistant to high temperatures than in alkaline and neutral.

That is why baking with baking soda contains a lower percentage of thiamine than a similar dessert without baking soda. Freezing useful foods in the freezer leads to the partial destruction of thiamine molecules.

Depending on the specific type of food, the damage caused can vary between 50 and 90% of the original vitamin level. Canned foods are saturated with vitamin B1 even if critical temperatures are not reached when cooked.

In just half an hour of sterilization, without which safe preservation is not possible, up to 40% of thiamine is broken down.Coffee lovers should double or triple their daily intake of vitamin B1, as the invigorating drink stimulates production of hydrochloric acid, which in large doses inhibits the action of thiamine.

Use healthy food, rational approach in the composition of the menu, keep an eye on lifestyle correction, without waiting for dangerous symptoms, – only in this way can you maintain your own health and vitality of spirit for many years of life!

Ellie Lauderdale

My name is Ellie Lauderdale, MD and I am USA based professional Nutritionist .

I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and board certified specialist in sports dietetics who is trained in integrative medicine. I have worked with hundreds of clients, from those suffering with chronic disease to professional and olympian athletes. My goal is to help optimize you from the inside so that you can feel, perform, and look your best on the outside.

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