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Tags: thiamine | legumes | yeast | edema

Enhance Your Thiamine Level

David Brownstein, M.D. By Wednesday, 26 August 2015 04:32 PM EDT Current | Bio | Archive

In the modern Western world, the most common reason for thiamine deficiency is a high-carbohydrate diet — especially a diet that contains a large amount of white rice.

Ingesting a large amount of refined sugar in the form of soda or candy can also predispose a person to thiamine deficiency.

Keep in mind that thiamine needs are elevated when the body’s metabolic requirements increase, as during pregnancy and lactation, cancer, liver disease, infections, hyperthyroidism, and with intense physical exercise.

The U.S. government has finally recognized that thiamine deficiency can affect people with diets high in refined carbohydrates.

A government mandate now requires refined flour to be fortified with B-vitamins, including thiamine. This measure has reduced the risk of thiamine deficiency.

A better solution would be to avoid refined food sources altogether, substituting whole foods in your diet instead. The richest food source of thiamine is yeast. It is also found in many grains.

However, as previously noted, the refining of grains removes most or all of the thiamine from the end product. Therefore, if grains are part of your diet, it is best to eat whole grain sources.

For example, whole wheat bread has five times more thiamine than unenriched white bread. Brown rice contains a small amount of thiamine — 0.33 mg per 100 grams — but white rice is severely deficient at just 0.08 mg per 100 grams.

Infants who are fed breast milk get their thiamine from it, and the mother’s diet is the sole determinant on whether the infant will receive enough. Therefore, it is very important for women of child-bearing age to get a nutritional evaluation before they become pregnant.

In order to allow the body to have the best chance at absorbing thiamine, it is important to not ingest tea after a meal, consume products with high vitamin C content (like citrus fruits), and heat fish to break down thiaminase, which inactivates thiamine.

Legumes such as lentils are a good source of thiamine, along with vegetables and unmilled or parboiled rice. Pork, beef liver, and salmon are also good sources.

Thiamine can be supplemented orally. I recommend 50 to 100 mg per day to correct low levels. There are no toxicity studies for oral dosing of thiamine.

In addition, I frequently use intravenous thiamine. In these cases, I recommend combining it with other B-vitamins to prevent imbalances.

Thiamine deficiency is common. It can lead to a host of problems including fatigue, edema, and congestive heart failure, as well as muscular and neurological problems.

Correcting thiamine deficiency early is much more effective as compared to correcting long-term thiamine deficiency. Thiamine levels should be checked in every patient suffering from suspicious symptoms.

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Ingesting a large amount of refined sugar in the form of soda or candy can also predispose a person to thiamine deficiency.
thiamine, legumes, yeast, edema
Wednesday, 26 August 2015 04:32 PM
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