Vitamins and Depression: Thiamine, Niacin, Vitamin C, Vitamin D
Millions of Americans suffer from depression. Depression causes a surprising amount of discomfort. Good mental health is priceless. People spend lots of money on therapy, divorce, career changes, soothing music tapes, meditation courses, and more in a quest for good mental health. Drugs that manipulate feelings are blockbusters. Unfortunately, most people experience significant side effects and receive only partial benefits. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that super healthy people with excellent mental health get the most benefit from prescription anti-depressants – a kind of “super” caffeine.
If you are depressed, or know someone who is depressed, here’s something new to try – fat-soluble thiamine. Two forms of fat soluble thiamine are readily available. These are known as TTFD and Benfotiamine. Fat soluble thiamine was popularized in Japan several decades ago, yet remains underutilized there and obscure here in the U.S.
I developed a renewed interest in thiamine about 6 months ago when I had the insight that thiamine, vitamin C, niacin, and vitamin D are special nutrients because they are associated with the four human pandemic vitamin deficiency diseases beriberi, scurvy, pellagra, and rickets respectively. Read more here
The thiamine that is commonly found in multivitamins and in the pharmacy requires special transport proteins a first time to get into the bloodstream and a second time to get into cells. Fat-soluble thiamines do not require these special proteins. Until you try fat-soluble thiamines, you can’t rule out the possibility that your depression is partially caused by thiamine deficiency. Read more here
If you’re depressed, there is much to gain and almost nothing to lose by finding and trying fat-soluble thiamine. Extra vitamins work better in combination than alone, so I recommend taking at least 2000 mg/day of vitamin C, 250 mg of time-release niacin two or three times/week, and a daily multivitamin too. Don’t give up on excellent mental health until you’ve tried all these vitamins together.