Fat-Soluble Thiamine, Dementia, and Other Problems of Aging
I’m going to make the case in this column that Alzheimer’s disease, senility, and dementia may be forms of beriberi, the deficiency disease caused by thiamine. Terrible diseases like MS, Parkinson’s, and ALS might also be related to thiamine. I’m going to advise everyone to take supplements containing allithiamines – fat soluble forms of thiamine that are among the known bioactive constituents of garlic.
This is going to be a short column. Thiamine is a special essential nutrient. It has not been easy for humans to reliably find enough thiamine in food. As a result, thiamine deficiency was a regular source of pandemic disease throughout the course of human history. Only three other nutrients have cause similar problems. These are vitamin C (the cause of scurvy), niacin (the cause of pellagra) and vitamin D (the cause of rickets). Thiamine is special amongst these four special vitamins because the most common forms of thiamine (thiamine hydrochloride and thiamine mononitrate) are not easily distributed throughout the body once it is ingested. The other three vitamins in their common forms freely diffuse throughout all the cells in the body. Thiamine salts require special thiamine transport proteins to cross many of the body’s membrane systems.
Slow deterioration is an inevitable part of aging. If the parts of your body that are responsible for thiamine transport start to deteriorate earlier than normal, you are in big trouble. Deprived of thiamine, deterioration is certain to accelerate.
In modern times there is a straightforward fix for this problem. The fix is to take fat-soluble forms of thiamine known as allithiamines (or eat large amounts of garlic). Allithiamines transport themselves throughout the body, and do not require the assistance of thiamine transport proteins.
If you deprive people of thiamine, they exhibit symptoms closely resembling Alzheimer’s disease. The damage is often irreversible (taking thiamine often does not reverse the symptoms), especially when thiamine deprivation is maintained for a prolong period of time. The cause of Alzheimer’s disease is presently unknown. What is the harm of taking allithiamines while scientists investigate? Allithiamines are available in almost every corner store in the form of garlic tablets. I’m sorry to say that I have no idea what the concentration of allithiamines are in garlic tablets. As a result, I recommend taking benfotiamine or TTFD, two specific allithiamines that can be purchased easily enough on the internet (I have yet to personally find a bottle of either of these two supplements on the shelves of a retail store). I will shortly be posting references to scientific literature. Many of these references were the source of the logic in this column.