Get Your Thiamine: 6 Amazing Vitamin B1 Health Benefits

vitamin B1 health benefits

Want to know more about vitamin B1 health benefits?

Thiamine (vitamin B1) is the first B vitamin discovered by scientists, which is why it’s called B1. As with all B vitamins, thiamine is a water-soluble vitamin, so any excess will be excreted in your urine. Thiamine health benefits are visible throughout your entire body, as it’s used by many organs to keep you healthy. This is why it’s such an essential nutrient!

Thiamine is needed for the health of your skin, hair, liver and eyes. Another great benefit of thiamine is its ability to boost your immune system and prevent illness. Pretty nifty, huh?

Here we’re discussing 6 amazing health benefits of vitamin B1.


How To Get Your Thiamine

Most people get enough thiamine from the foods that they eat every day. That’s why eating a varied and balanced diet is important. Thiamine can be found in:

  • pork
  • poultry
  • peas
  • nuts
  • dried beans
  • soybeans
  • whole grain cereal
  • lentils
  • legumes
  • bread
  • rice
  • pasta
  • fortified breakfast cereals

The recommended daily intake of thiamine is 1.2 mg, though this can vary.

Thiamine deficiency has devastating effects on the body. However, vitamin B1 deficiency is uncommon on its own in developed countries. It usually occurs together with other B vitamin deficiencies and can also occur as a result of certain health conditions.

Crohn’s Disease, anorexia and alcoholism can cause thiamine deficiency, and some kidney dialysis patients suffer from it. Thiamine deficiency can lead to beriberi, a condition that causes peripheral nerve problems, heart problems and short-term memory loss.

vitamin b1 health benefits for the brain
Overhead view of lemon tea and black coffee; tea or coffee break with snack food and drink table top image.

Coffee and tea (even decaf varieties), raw fish, and shellfish can deplete the levels of thiamine in your body.

Thiamine is essential to turn carbs into glucose and to break down fats and protein. You get the most of the components of your energy from healthy levels of thiamine working in your body. When your vitamin B1 levels are low, you’re more likely to feel fatigued.

Thiamine is well known as an anti-stress vitamin that aids your body to combat stress. Aside from thiamine protecting against anxiety and depression.

And now let’s take a closer look at the 6 key vitamin B1 health benefits.

READ ALSO: 10+ Food Sources of Thiamine


1. Vitamin B1 Aids Digestion

Thiamine is so essential to the proper digestion of food and absorption of nutrients in your body. Low levels can cause nausea and occasional vomiting, which will increase rapidly if left unattended.

If thiamine deficiency is suspected, your doctor might prescribe you thiamine supplements.

Another vitamin B1 health benefit is that it helps you to maintain good muscular tone in your digestive tract. This aids in digestion and prevents constipation. Also, a lot of thiamine is located in the digestive tract, so it’s very important to maintaining a healthy immune system.


2. Vitamin B1 Health Benefits for the Heart

vitamin b1 health benefits for the heart

Preventing heart disease is another vitamin B1 health benefit. In some studies, there were significant improvements in echocardiograms of those suffering from congestive heart failure. It also improved left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), blood pressure, and overall heart function.

Studies have also shown that individuals suffering from heart disease are thiamine deficient. Severe thiamine deficiency has been shown to cause congestive heart failure.


3. Vitamin B1 Anti-Aging Effects

Vitamin B1 anti-aging benefits can to be seen through the entire body. Thiamine prevents oxidative damage to the eyes, which helps to delay the onset of cataracts as you age. Vitamin B1 health benefits include being an aid in cell reproduction, which ensures that you have clear, healthy skin.

It is also a powerful antioxidant, helping to prevent skin damage from the sun, smoking and alcohol consumption. Healthy skin cells help ensure that premature aging won’t start to show on your skin.

Thiamine helps to clear away old and unhealthy skin cells, ensuring that new, healthy skin cells replace them. This aids in a youthful appearance and lends a healthy looking glow to your skin.

Vitamin B1 anti-aging benefits also include preventing age spots and wrinkles. This can lead to the overall premature aging of a person lacking their daily required amounts of vitamin B1.


4. Vitamin B1 Prevents Nerve Damage

Another vitamin B1 health benefit is its contribution to the production of myelin sheaths around your nerves. Lack of (or damaged) sheating can result in severe nerve damage. Damaged sheaths mean slower impulse conduction, and that will be reflected in decreased sensation and slower reflexes.

Much like reflexes, myelin sheaths surrounding your nerves can suffer severe damage without thiamine. By protecting and feeding the nerves sheaths, thiamine ensures that your nerves stay protected over time. A common symptom of damaged myelin sheats is tingling in your arms and legs, which can become distressing after a time.


5. Vitamin B1 Health Benefits for Mental Health

health benefits of vitamin b1 thiamine

Thiamine is well known for helping you deal with stress. In addition, increasing your energy levels is also a known vitamin B1 health benefit. It has been shown in studies to slow the onset of Alzheimer’s disease when thiamine supplements of 100mg daily were given.

It also improves your concentration and memory. It can help you with the foggy feeling that is linked with forgetfulness.


Thiamine Is Key to Healthy Bodily Functions

As with all of the B vitamins, Vitamin B1, or thiamine, is a key to keeping your body healthy. Vitamin B1 health benefits are still being studied, but what benefits we are certain of are amazing. Thiamine is needed for the health of your skin, hair, liver, and eyes. It also combats stress, boosts the immune system and energises you.


How to Recognize a Problem Stemming from Thiamine Deficiency

thiamine benefits

Although thiamine deficiency is rare in developed countries, it can occur in cases of anorexia or alcoholism. However, it’s still important to know what the signs of thiamine deficiency are. Remember that deficiency in vitamin B1 is usually a symptom of a larger problem.


Bottom Line: Vitamin B1 Health Benefits Are Amazing

Without the right amounts of thiamine, your body can’t turn your food into energy or keep your digestive tract healthy.

A healthy tract leads to a healthy immune system. If you suspect thiamine deficiency, you should follow up with your GP as quickly as possible to investigate. Sometimes, taking a B complex vitamins supplement that also includes thiamine to ensure you’re meeting your RDA.

There you have it: 6 health benefits of thiamine that you probably didn’t expect. And here are 10+ delightful food sources of B1 that you can add to your diet today.