Beriberi...doesn’t it sound like a lush vacation spot?
Unfortunately, it isn’t. It’s a serious condition people can develop when they are vitamin B1 deficient. It’s way more common to be missing essential vitamins and minerals than one would think!
Additionally, many people are specifically deficient in B vitamins, especially vitamins B1, B6, and B12 . This is because during human evolution we have lost a lot of our abilities to synthesize vitamins in the body itself .
You can get your Bs through food if you plan out your meals...but should you ask your doctor about taking over-the-counter B1? And just what are the signs of beriberi?
Let’s find out!
B1 with Your Body
Vitamin B1 is also called thiamin. It is vital for so many processes in your body you can’t survive without! When taken in proper amounts, it supports your immune system, metabolism, and even cell reproduction. In addition, studies are being done in relation to taking B1 to support less mental strain , .
There are many foods that naturally contain thiamin, however, most people get this vitamin in fortified foods and supplements.
Foods rich in vitamin B1 are:
- Yeast, nuts, whole grains, and eggs
- Meats like beef and pork
- Fruits and vegetables like oranges, cauliflower, potatoes, asparagus, and kale
- Fortified flours
However, many groups of people are susceptible to being deficient and at risk of side effects and conditions, like vegans, vegetarians, pregnant women, as well as people who consume a lot of alcohol on a regular basis.
What’s more, is that cooking foods with B1 destroys the vitamin’s value . Many people will therefore take B1 or the full range of Bs, called B-Complex, to ensure the daily requirements are met.
B1 Deficiency: Signs and Symptoms
Not sure about your B1 intake? Here are some signs you may be deficient:
- Weakened cardiovascular system
- Loss of appetite, which in some cases leads to anorexia
- Imbalance, tingling in limbs
- Confusion and severe memory loss, as well as being linked to the higher likelihood of dementia
- Beriberi (see below)
Sounds like a cheerful title for something so serious. Beriberi is a disease that develops when a person is B1 deficient.
There are two types: wet and dry beriberi, each affecting different parts of the body . Wet beriberi affects the heart, and can even lead to heart failure! Dry beriberi, on the other hand, damages the nerves and muscles.
Symptoms of wet beriberi include swollen legs, rapid heart rate, and shortness of breath, while dry beriberi is marked by pain, mental confusion, decreased control of limb movement, and even paralysis.
This all sounds incredibly bleak, are we right? Fortunately, the easiest way to drastically reduce the likelihood of developing beriberi is to ensure you are getting your daily recommended amount of B1. With a supplement, it’s easier than ever!
The EZ Melts Difference
If you try B supplements, see why EZ Melts is better--our vitamins are fast melting, EZ to take, and have a delicious customer approved flavor.
It’s often hard to find B1 supplements on their own outside of the B-Complex supplements out there, but we have you covered!
Unlike many major vitamin brands, our tablets do not include harmful toxic ingredients, artificial flavors, or GMOs. Try us out and see the difference!
Written by Annie-Eliza Stevens