Thursday, 27 June 2013

Vitamin B1 - Thiamine

We have finished looking at the fat-soluble vitamins. You will remember that fat-soluble means they need fat to be present for our bodies to properly absorb them. Now we are going to be looking at water-soluble vitamins. These are more easily absorbed by our bodies because they can dissolve in water. Any excess of these vitamins is eliminated through our urine and not stored by the body so we need to make sure we are replenshing them frequently.
There are many different "B" vitamins. They all work as coenzymes which means they help enzymes function properly in our bodies. What are enzymes, you ask? They are special proteins in our bodies that help produce chemcial reactions. For instance, you have probably heard of digestive enzymes. They help us digest our food. There are myriads of enzymes in our bodies all with a specific function, and the B vitamins help them to perform. So you can see that these vitamins are very important to us. Finally, before we move on, since the vitamins B all work together you should look for a B complex supplement.
The first B vitamin is Vitamin B1 or Thiamine. This vitamin is important to our mental health. Children need it for growth and learning ability. It is also important for the muscles in our digestive tract and helps in the assimilation of nutrients and stabilization of appetite. A deficiency of Vitamin B1 can lead to the disease beri-beri. Caffeine may destroy thiamine. Pregnant and breast feeding women have increased need for thiamine.
Some pretty important functions here, but according to there are some tasty foods containing Vitamin B1. First off is yeast extract spread (Marmite), a popular food in British culture. Then we have sesame butter (tahini) and seeds and sunflower seeds. Next are dried herbs and spices, pork chops, pine nuts, pistachios, macadamia nuts, fish and pecans. All of those nuts! Sounds good to me.

The information about Vitamin B1 comes from the Encyclopedia of Natural Healing, Alive Publishing Group, 1997.

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