SpectraCell Blog

How important IS vitamin B1(Thiamin)?

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Aug 07, 2013 @ 10:15 AM

Vitamin B1(thiamin) is a water-soluble vitamin of the 8 B complex vitamin B1(thiamin)vitamins. All B vitamins help the body convert food (carbohydrates) into fuel (glucose), which is used to produce energy. The B vitamins, also help the body metabolize fats and protein. B complex vitamins are needed for healthy skin, hair, eyes, and liver. They also help the nervous system function properly, and are needed for good brain function.

Vitamin B1(Thiamin) is used by cells to help make energy from foodstuffs. Thiamin pyrophosphate is a cofactor for dehydrogenase enzymes with key roles in cellular energy production.  Thiamin pyrophosphate is required for transketolase activity, which is a component of the pentose phosphate pathway, the sole source for the synthesis of ribose used in synthesis of the nucleic acids (DNA and RNA).  These reactions also produce the major source of cellular NADPH (used in fatty acid biosynthesis and other pathways). Thiamin triphosphate is localized in nerve cell membranes, and plays a role in transmission of nervous impulses and acetylcholine synthesis.

Deficiency symptoms:

Early vitamin B1(thiamin) deficiency leads to clinical signs of:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Constipation
  • Mental depression
  • Nausea
  • Peripheral Neuropathy 

Clinical signs of more severe thiamin deficiency (Wernicke-Korsafoff Syndrome):

  • Mental confusion
  • Loss of eye coordination
  • Loss of fine motor control
  • Weakness

Those at risk for vitamin B1(Thiamin) deficiency include:

  • Patients suffering from malnutrition, starvation or malabsorptin syndromes
  • Alcoholics
  • Patients on restricted diets
  • Gastric partitioning surgery
  • Thiamin-Responsive
  • Prolonged hemodialysis (pregnancy, lactation, fever, infection, trauma)
  • Elderly
  • Patients with an increased metabolic rate
  • Inherited
  • Metabolic Disorders

Repletion Information:

Dietary sources richest in B1 (per serving) include:

  • Nutritional supplements
  • Rice Bran
  • Pork enriched grain & grain products (cereals)
  • Nutritional Yeasts
  • Wheat Germ
  • Legumes (beans, peas, soybeans, lentils
Download SpectraCell's nutrition correlation reference chart referencing Vitamin B1(Thiamin)'s role in Fibromyalgia, Insomnia and Pain.
View our webinar on "Nutritional Considerations of Fibromyalgia" which discusses vitamin B1 as well as many other nutrients that play a vital role in fibromyalgia.

For more information on how to check your vitamin levels click here.

Topics: SpectraCell, B Vitamins, Fatigue, DNA, Case Study, Diet, Nervous System, Vitamin B1, skin disorder, reference chart, loss of appetite, constipation, nausea, irritability, weakness, mental confusion, thiamin

SpectraCell's Nutritional Correlation Chart on Autism

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Feb 06, 2013 @ 01:54 PM

Autism Nutritional WheelVitamin D - High dose vitamin D therapy reversed autistic behaviors in severely deficient children; Maternal vitamin D deficiency may predispose children to autism.3,4,5

Vitamin A - One cause of autism may be a defect in a retinoid receptor protein (G-alpha protein) which is critical for language processing, attention and sensory perception; Evidence suggests natural vitamin A fixes this protein defect in autistics.1,2

Folate - Oral folate therapy can resolve symptoms of autism in some cases, particularly in autistics with genes that impair folate dependent enzymes.31,32,33

Glutamine - Blood levels of this amino acid which acts as a neurotransmitter are particularly low in autistics. Glutamine also helps prevent leaky gut syndrome, which can exacerbate autistic symptoms.28,29,30

Vitamin C - Improved symptom severity and sensory motor scores in autistic patients possibly due to interaction with dopamine synthesis; Vitamin C also has a strong sparing effect on glutathione.26,27

Glutathione & Cysteine -  Commonly deficient in autistic patients, lack of these antioxidants impair detoxification and methylation processes; Low levels linked to neurological symptoms in autism which is often considered an oxidative stress disorder.21,22,23,24,25

Vitamin B1 - Deficiency linked to delayed language development; Supplementation may benefit autistic patients.19,20

Vitamin B12 - Low B12 impairs methylation (detoxification) which causes the neurological damage responsible for many autistic symptoms; Deficiency of B12 can cause optic neuropathy and vision loss in autistics; B12 raises cysteine and glutathione levels.16,17,18

Vitamin B6 - Cofactor the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine; Conversion of B6 to its active form is compromised in many autistics; Supplementation trials with B6 resulted in better eye contact, speech and fewer self-stimulatory behavior in autistics; Some consider B6 in combination with magnesium to be a breakthrough treatment for autism.14,15

Magnesium - Cofactor for the neurotransmitters that affect social reactions and emotion; Autistics have low levels; Improves effectiveness of B6 therapy.11,12,13

Zinc - Eliminates toxic mercury from brain tissue; Zinc/ copper ratio is particularly low in autistic kids; Low zinc impairs  the protein (called metallothionein) that removes heavy metals from the body.8,9,10

Carnitine - Transports fatty acids into cells; Low carnitine (common in autism) impairs the ability to use fatty acids for learning and social development.6,7

 For a copy of Spectracell's Nutrition Correlation chart on Autism click here

Topics: micronutrients, micronutrient testing, Cysteine, Antidepressants, zinc, folate, Vitamin D, Carnitine, Magnesium, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, B Vitamins, Antioxidants, diagnostic tools, supplements, autism, Vitamins, DNA, deficiencies, health, deficiency, Depression, Glutamine, Neurology, Glutathione, Diet, Minerals, Digestion, Brain, Nervous System, Neurotransmitters, Aggression, Stress, Vitamin B1, degenerative illness, micronutrient test

Can Nutrient Deficiencies Provide Insight into the Health of a Neuron and Your Brain?

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Mon, Jan 09, 2012 @ 10:55 AM

Nutritional Brain HealthGuest Blog by: Dr. Arland Hill (D.C.)

Most of us are familiar with the saying use it or lose it.  Many times when individuals say this, they are likely referring to muscle tissue.  However, this saying is equally valid regarding the health of the brain and nervous tissue.  Since the brain has impact on every system in the body, keeping it healthy is of the utmost importance.  Doing so takes 3 key ingredients; energy, fats, and stimulation.

While most probably don’t think about the energy demands of the nervous system, they are in fact quite high.  The production of energy for a neuron, or nerve cell, goes beyond just good function.  The ability to produce energy is the difference between life and death.  As with all cells, an energy substrate must be available, preferably glucose.  Uptake of glucose by neurons depends on healthy insulin receptors.  Healthy insulin receptors that are sensitive optimize neuron function by efficiently controlling synapse density, promoting neuronal growth, or neuroplasticity, and refining the function of the involved neurocircuitry.  In short, neurons function better and extend their network when insulin receptors are sensitive.  But as attractive as this sounds, it fails to happen when nutrient deficiencies such as chromium and B3 exist.  Chromium and niacin help make up the glucose tolerance factor which has significant bearing on the glucose-insulin interaction.

Neuron Once glucose is taken in by the neuron, it must enter the mitochondria to produce ATP, the energy molecule.  However, to get ATP, several key nutrients must be available.  These nutrients fuel each step of the energy cycle and include B1, B2, B3, B5, glutamine, and magnesium just to name a few.  For the neuron, the importance of this cannot be understated.

When the neuron is able to receive adequate oxygen, it can combine the metabolites formed from the energy production cycle and generate ATP.  In the absence of adequate nutrient stores, ATP is not produced efficiently leading to the demise of the neuron.  This can be the early onset of neurodegeneration.  Moreover, since neurons depend on stimulation from each other to maintain functional neurocircuitry, losing a neuron will in turn have effects on adjacent neurons.  The potential “snowball-like” effect of neurodegeneration emphasizes the consequence of allowing seemingly harmless nutrient deficiencies to persist.

Lastly, a protective coating is needed.  Think about this as insulation for the wiring of your neurocircuity.  With it, neurological impulses are transmitted at a faster rate.  Our insulation is fat.  Micronutrient assessment provides a window into how we might be producing insulation Neuronsaround our neurological tissue.  Not only does such testing show how fats are being utilized by living cells, it also illustrates the status of nutrients such as B12 that are equally needed for production of our insulation, otherwise known as myelin.

The health of the nervous system is a commonly overlooked.  When it is functioning appropriately, it is given little attention.  In contrast, by the time a neurological condition manifests, it is difficult to make up lost ground to neurodegeneration.  However, altering its effects can take place, but only in the presence of adequate nutrient status.  Given proper precursors and stimulation, the ability of the neuron to produce energy is regained, promoting an environment of neuroplasticity.

Dr. Arland Hill

 

Arland Hill, DC, MPH, DACBN- Complete Care Chiropractic and Wellness

For more information about our client Dr. Hill, please visit his website or his blog. Or contact him at 281-557-7200.

Topics: micronutrient testing, Magnesium, B Vitamins, Glutamine, Brain, Nervous System, Chromium, Dr. Arland Hill, Glucose