Getting To Know More About Vitamin B1
Do you remember the time that you wished dinner would be over? These were those times that
your mother served vegetables for dinner and it took every ounce of your will power to keep it down. But did you
ever wonder why your mother always insisted that you eat your vegetables and fruits? One reason is because it
provides some necessary vitamins for your body to grow healthy.
One of these vitamins is the first of the B-Vitamin family, Vitamin B1 Thiamine. Vitamin B1 was first discovered
by Umetaro Suzuki, a Japanese doctor/researcher who experimented in 1910 on rice bran in order to figure out what
substance in it produces a treatment for beriberi. It was first named aberic acid. It was further studied by Robert
R. Williams who was successful in determining its chemical structure and composition as well as its synthesis. He
named it Thiamine.
Vitamin B1, Thiamine, and aneurine hydrochloride are all synonymous to each other. It is found to be a compound
of no color, containing carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen and sulfur molecules. Its structure is composed of a
thiazole and pyrimidine ring.
An important role of Thiamine is its skill in carbohydrate and fat metabolism in order to provide energy to the
body. It is also needed for the normal development and growth of the body. The maintenance of normal heart
functions as well as the gastrointestinal and nervous system needs Thiamine. It is not soluble in water and is not
stored in the body although when it is absorbed, it is abundant in the muscles.
The vegetables that your mom probably wanted you to eat are spinach, soybeans, legumes and green beans. These
are all rich in Thiamine. You can also get it by eating liver, pork, beef, whole grains, bread, yeast, soybeans and
bananas. Sometimes, just to get out of eating those vegetables, you would make excuses, or even throw it away when
your mom was not looking. But even if she doesn’t know about it, you were probably just cheating yourself from
getting a good nutrition, which can lead to a degeneration of the nerves in the nervous system and ultimately
Aside from not eating Thiamine rich foods, taking too much alcohol may also lead to a Thiamine deficiency.
Malnutrition is also a factor in having low levels of Thiamine as well as taking in raw shellfish and raw
freshwater fish, which are rich in thiaminase, an enzyme that removes Thiamine from the system. Drinking too much
coffee and tea also has an anti-thiamine effect that can cause a decrease in the levels of Thiamine in the
Another good reason for having sufficient levels of thiamine in the blood, is its ability to increase mental
acuity and as a repellant for mosquitoes. Studies have even shown it to play a beneficial role in the treatment of
Knowing all these of Vitamin B1 Thiamine can hopefully make people aware of its importance in the body, even if
it is only part of the B-vitamins.