March 15, 2021

Thiamin B1


Thiamin is essential for the proper breakdown and absorption of fats and carbohydrates in the human body; it plays a critical role in oxidative ATP synthesis* and is vital for proper functioning of the central and peripheral nervous system (1). Thiamin is an essential vitamin that plays a central role in cerebral metabolism, which provides adequate fuel to the brain. Magnesium is required as a co-nutrient to convert thiamin (B1) into its active form (see our section on Magnesium to learn more about its function) (2).

Lifestyle choices such as high alcohol intake and dependency can lead to vitamin B1 deficiency. Thiamin deficiency occurs because ethanol reduces gastrointestinal absorption of B1, and B1 is stored in the liver (2). GEM provides .4mg of thiamin B1 which is 35% of the recommended dietary allowance; enough vitamin b1 supplement to fill the gaps in the diet and ensure healthy levels of B1 and b1 benefits for your lifestyle.

*process by which energy is harnessed naturally in the body


Brain Function:

There are many vitamin b1 benefits; Thiamin benefits support positive moods and help promote brain function, especially concentration, reaction time and memory. In a study conducted on 120 young adult females, it was shown that using a daily thiamine supplement over two months positively influenced reaction time and energy levels (1).


When an individual’s energy intake increases, thiamine-dependent enzymes are more active, meaning that requirements for the vitamin increase; the recommended daily intake is thereby highest for pregnant and lactating women (1). Participation in strenuous exercise may also call for an increased need of thiamin in the diet.


Our Thiamin (B1) and the benefits that come along with it are obtained from quinoa sprouts germinated with b-complex. During the germination process of the quinoa, the b-vitamins are incorporated into the quinoa seeds and available in their free form; they are also available in their biologically active form, allowing for proper absorption. 

Research conducted at the University of Scranton (Pennsylvania) USA has demonstrated that natural vitamins, as a result of their bioavailability, are superior to synthetic vitamins; Vitamin B1 derived from natural sources is 1.38 times better utilized in the body and 1.27 times better retained.


What are the symptoms of low thiamine?

Humans require a minimum of 0.33 mg of B1 for every 1,000 kcal of energy they consume. A thiamine deficiency can affect the cardiovascular, nervous, and immune system, which immune vitamins can help with, and a B1 deficiency commonly results in beriberi* or Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome**. Initial symptoms of B1 deficiency include anorexia, irritability, and short-term memory difficulties. Thiamine deficiency is easily treatable, and most signs/symptoms fully resolve with thiamine supplementation. However, once thiamine deficiency has progressed to Wernicke-Korsakoff, this dietary supplementation may result in minimal improvement and symptoms can become permanent (1). A severe Thiamine deficiency is uncommon in developed countries. If you have a severe vitamin b1 deficiency itcan be addressed through diet and supplementation of this b vitamin.

*a condition that results in problems with peripheral nerves and wasting
**a brain disorder caused by a lack of B1; symptoms include confusion/loss of mental activity, loss of muscle coordination, and vision changes, among other

What foods have thiamin?

The human body cannot produce this type of vitamin B, so we must rely on food sources to get the appropriate amount. High levels of vitamin B1 are found in whole grains, legumes, nuts, meats, rice bran, and fish products. Those who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet should take notice to ensure their diet includes thiamin-rich sources (note that milled rice and grains have little to no thiamin due to processing) (1). GEM sources B1 from germinated quinoa sprouts, making it a 100% plant based source.


  1. Jennifer C Kerns, Jean L Gutierrez, Thiamin, Advances in Nutrition, Volume 8, Issue 2, March 2017, Pages 395–397,
  2. Martin, Peter, et al. “The Role of Thiamine Deficiency in Alcoholic Brain Disease.” Alcohol Research & Health, 2003,
  3. Wiley KD, Gupta M. Vitamin B1 Thiamine Deficiency (Beriberi) [Updated 2019 Dec 29]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020 Jan-. Available from:
  4. Benton D, Griffiths R, Haller J. Thiamine supplementation mood and cognitive functioning. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 1997;129(1):66‐71. doi:10.1007/s002130050163 -

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