Thiamin Supplements

Thiamin supplements may be useful during times of stress, fever, diarrhea and during and after surgery. Many experts recommend 100 mg of thiamin per day for those who drink alcohol.

Therapeutic uses of supplements

Thiamin supplements are used to prevent and correct the heart and nerve problems caused by thiamin deficiency. Thiamin also has a mild diuretic effect and may be beneficial to heart function. Restoring normal thiamin levels in diabetics who are deficient leads to improvements in blood sugar metabolism.

Elderly people

The results of a trial reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 1997 suggest that thiamin supplements may help to improve quality of life in many elderly people. Researchers from hospitals in Christchurch, New Zea- land measured red blood cell concentrations of thiamin pyrophosphate (TPP) in 222 people aged over 65 years. This measurement was done twice in three months. Thirty-five people had low levels at both measurement times. These people were divided into two groups and were given either a thiamin supple- ment of 10 mg per day or a placebo for three months. The researchers then assessed blood pressure, body weight, height, body mass index, hand grip strength and cognitive function in the subjects. The results showed that the supplements decreased blood pressure and weight and improved quality of life. There was a trend towards improved sleep and energy.

Thiamin SupplementsFatigue

Like the other B vitamins, thiamin is used to treat fatigue. High-dose thiamin supplementation may be helpful in preventing or accelerating recovery from exercise-induced fatigue. In a small Japanese study done in 1996, the effects of 100 mg per day of thiamin was assessed in 16 male athletes. The athletes exercised on bicycles and changes in blood, heart and lung functioning were measured. In the thiamin supplement group, changes in blood glucose were suppressed and the athletes felt less fatigued.

Mental function

Thiamin supplements have been shown to improve mood and mental function, possibly via effects on the neurotransmitter, acetylcholine. Thiamin supplements also appear to improve mental function in epileptics treated with the anticonvulsant drug, phenytoin.

In a study done in Wales in 1997, researchers gave 120 young adult women either a placebo or 50 mg thiamin, each day for two months. The women were not thiamin-deficient. Before and after taking the tablets, mood, memory and reaction times were assessed. The women taking the thiamin reported that they felt more clearheaded, composed and energetic. Tests showed no influence on memory but reaction times were faster following supplementation.

Alcohol and drugs

Thiamin has been used to treat some of the symptoms of alcohol abuse, such as the reduction in brain chemicals associated with memory and thought processes. In a study done in the US in 1997, thiamin supplements improved memory in cocaine-dependent patients. The patients were not taking cocaine during the study and were given 5 g of thiamin or a placebo. They were then asked to perform memory scanning tasks. The results showed that the patients taking the thiamin supplements performed significantly better than those taking the placebo.

Alzheimer's disease

Thiamin SupplementsThiamin metabolism appears to be altered in Alzheimer's with lower levels of thiamin and enzymes which metabolize thiamin found in the brains of Alzheimer's disease patients. Clinical data suggest that high dose thiamin may have a mild beneficial effect in some patients with Alzheimer's disease but it does not appear to halt the progress of the disease.

Other uses

Thiamin supplements have been used to treat other problems that affect the nerves, including multiple sclerosis. Bell's palsy, neuritis and diabetic neuropa- thy. Thiamin may stimulate digestion by improving hydrochloric acid production and intestinal muscle tone. As with the other B vitamins, thiamin is used to relieve stress and muscle tension and to speed healing after surgery. Some people use thiamin supplements in doses of up to 100 mg to help repel mosqui- toes and other biting insects, and it may take several weeks of supplement use before beneficial effects appear.

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Thiamin Health
Thiamin Absorption
Thiamin Deficiency
Thiamin Sources
Thiamin Recommended Daily
Thiamin Overdose
Thiamin Supplements
Thiamin Interactions



Other Vitamins:

Vitamin A
Beta carotene
Vitamin B6
Vitamin B12
Pantothenic acid
Vitamin C
Vitamin D
Vitamin E
Vitamin K