Vitamin B1 Benefits

Vitamin B-1 is an essential water-soluble vitamin.

The B vitamins work together to help your body metabolize food. Each B vitamin has its own important role. Vitamin B-1, or thiamine, is one of the eight water-soluble B vitamins. You can get enough vitamin B-1 from your diet, but in some cases you may need to take an over-the-counter supplement. B vitamins are commonly found combined together in a B-complex capsule, as an easy way for you to ingest all of them. Inform your doctor before you begin taking a dietary supplement.

Regulates Appetite

According to Medline Plus, vitamin B-1 helps regulate your appetite. Vitamin B-1 works with neurotransmitters in your brain to let your body know when its hungry. In addition to this, it also works to let your body know when its full during a meal. This may prevent you from overeating. Women need 1.1 mg of B-1 daily and men need 1.2 mg.

Nervous and Cardiovascular System Functions

Vitamin B-1 is beneficial for your nervous and cardiovascular systems. B-1, or thiamine, provides nutrients for healthy nerve cells, as well as neuron structure and function. The outer layer of neurons in your body contains thiamine. Your central nervous system relies on B-1 to function normally. Vitamin B-1 benefits your cardiovascular system by maintaining red blood cells and promoting blood circulation.

Energy Metabolism

The B vitamins work together to release energy from the fat, protein and carbohydrates in the foods you eat. Your body uses this energy for basic functions, such as digestion, breathing and blood circulation. Vitamin B-1 specifically works to metabolize and release energy from carbohydrates, reports the University of Maryland Medical Center. Include vitamin B-1 in your diet to get the energy you need from the foods you eat.

Mucous Membranes

Mucous membranes help protect your body against foreign invaders that can cause infections. They coat the inside of your nose, lungs and eyelids. Vitamin B-1 keeps your mucous membranes healthy by providing them with nutrients to build new cells, reports Having a B-1 deficiency may cause your mucous membranes to break down and dry out. Your body may not be able to make new mucous membranes if B-1 is limited in your body.

Food Sources

Some animal foods are high in vitamin B-1. Organ meats, such as beef kidney or liver, are rich in B-1, but you can also eat egg yolks to get the B-1 you need. Vegetables high in B-1 include spinach, kale and collard greens. Corn, corn meal and fortified cereals can provide adequate amounts of B-1. You can also enjoy grain sources of B-1, such as brown rice and wheat germ. Nuts make a quick snack and can add more B-1 to your daily intake. At breakfast, eat fresh berries with your cereal or yogurt. Berries are rich in vitamin B-1.