Thiamine

The Information on the Vitamin

Welcome to the page on the information on Thiamine.

Thiamine (also spelled "thiamin") is a vitamin, formerly known as vitamin B1. Thiamine was one of the first compounds recognized as a vitamin.

Function of Thiamine (or Vitamin B1)

Thiamine is involved in many body functions, including nervous system and muscle function, the flow of electrolytes in and out of nerve and muscle cells, digestion, and carbohydrate metabolism. Very little thiamine is stored in the body and depletion can occur within 14 days. Severe thiamine deficiency may lead to serious complications involving the nervous system, brain, muscles, heart, and stomach and intestines.

Where can we find Thiamine?

Dietary sources of thiamine include beef, brewer's yeast, legumes (beans, lentils), milk, nuts, oats, oranges, pork, rice, seeds, wheat, whole-grain cereals, and yeast. In industrialized countries, food made with white rice or white flour is often enriched with thiamine.

Foods that Contain Thiamine

Other Things to Know about Thiamine

A lack or deficiency of thiamine can cause weakness, fatigue, psychosis (is a loss of contact with reality), and nerve damage. Thiamine deficiency in the United States is most often seen in people who abuse alcohol (alcoholism). A lot of alcohol makes it hard for the body to absorb thiamine from foods. Unless those with alcoholism receive higher-than-normal amounts of thiamine to make up for the difference, the body will not get enough of the substance. This can lead to a disease called beriberi. In severe thiamine deficiency, brain damage can occur. One type is called Korsakoff syndrome. The other is Wernicke's disease. Either or both of these conditions can occur in the same person. There is no known poisoning linked to thiamine.