How Can Something As Simple As Thiamine Cause So Many Problems?

Author: 62 Comments Share:
thiamine and the limbic system
I have read a criticism that thiamine deficiency is “too simple” to explain the devastating nature of the post Gardasil illnesses or the systemic adverse reactions to some medications. Sometimes, it is the simple and overlooked elements that are the most problematic.

Understanding Thiamine’s Role in Complex Adverse Reactions – The Limbic System

The lower part of the brain, called the brainstem, is a like computer, controlling the most basic aspects of survival, from breathing and heart rate, hunger and satiety, to fight or flight and reproduction. This computer-like function within the brainstem is called the autonomic system (ANS). The ANS together with the limbic system act in concert to regulate our most basic survival functions and behaviors. Both require thiamine to function.

Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome or POTS , a type of dysautonomia (dysregulation of the autonomic system) seems to be the among the commonest manifestations of the Gardasil effect. Many cases have been diagnosed already, while others present all of the symptoms but have yet to receive a diagnosis. Dysautonomia and POTS have also been observed with adverse reactions to other medications, as well. Dysautonomia and POTS, at the most basic level, represent a chaotic state of the limbic-autonomic system. Let me explain.

Fragmented Fight or Flight

The brainstem autonomic system together with the limbic system enable us to adapt to our environment, presiding over a number of reflexes that allow us to survive. For example, fight-or-flight is a survival reflex, triggered by perception of a dangerous incident that helps us to kill the enemy or escape. This kind of “stress event” in our ancestors was different from that we experience today. Wild animal predators have been replaced by taxes/business deadlines/rush hour traffic etc. These are the sources of modern stress. The beneficial effect is that the entire brain/body is geared to physical and mental response. However, it is designed for short term action and consumes energy rapidly. Prolonged action is literally exhausting and results in the sensation of fatigue. In the world of today where dietary mayhem is widespread, this is commonly represented as Panic Attacks, usually treated as psychological. They are really fragmented fight-or-flight reflexes that are triggered too easily because of abnormal brain chemistry.

Thiamine and Oxidative Metabolism: The Missing Spark Plug

Our brain computers rely completely on oxidative metabolism represented simply thus:

Fuel + Oxygen + Catalyst = Energy

Each of our one hundred trillion body/brain cells is kept alive and functioning because of this reaction. It all takes place in micro “fireplaces” known as mitochondria. Oxygen combines with fuel (food) to cause burning or the combustion – think fuel combustion engine. We need fuel, or gasoline, to burn and spark plugs to ignite in order for the engines to run.

In our body/brain cells it is called oxidation. The catalysts are the naturally occurring chemicals we call vitamins (vital to life). Like a spark plug, they “ignite” the food (fuel). Absence of ANY of the three components spells death.

Antioxidants like vitamin C protect us from the predictable “sparks” (as a normal effect of combustion) known as “oxidative stress”.  Vitamin B1, is the spark plug, the catalyst for these reactions. As vitamin B1, thiamine, or any other vitamin deficiency continues, more and more damage occurs in the limbic system because that is where oxygen consumption has the heaviest demand in the entire body. This part of the brain is extremely sensitive to thiamine deficiency.

Why Might Gardasil Lead to Thiamine Deficiency?

We do not know for sure how Gardasil or other vaccines or medications have elicited thiamine deficiency, but they have. We have two girls and one boy, tested and confirmed so far. More testing is underway. Thiamine deficiency in these cases may not be pure dietary deficiency. It is more likely to be damage to the utilization of thiamine from as yet an unknown mechanism, affecting the balance of the autonomic (automatic) nervous system. It is certainly able to explain POTS (one of the many conditions that produce abnormal ANS function) in two Gardasil affected girls. Beriberi, the classic B1 deficiency disease, is the prototype for ANS disease. Administration of thiamine will not necessarily bring about a cure, depending on time since onset of symptoms, but it may help.

Thiamine Deficiency Appetite and Eating Disorders

Using beriberi as a model, let us take appetite as an example of one of its many symptoms. When we put food into the stomach, it automatically sends a signal to a “satiety center” in the computer. As we fill the stomach, the signals crescendo and the satiety center ultimately tells us that we have eaten enough. Thiamine deficiency affects the satiety center, wrecking its normal action. Paradoxically it can cause anorexia (loss of appetite) or the very opposite, a voracious appetite that is never satisfied and may even go on to vomiting. It can also shift from anorexia to being voracious at different times within a given patient. That is why Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia represent one disease, not two.

Thiamine Deficiency, Heart Rate and Breathing

The autonomic nervous system, responsible for fight or flight, regulates heart activity, accelerating or decelerating according to need. So heart palpitations are common in thiamine deficiency. Its most vital action is in control of automatic breathing and thiamine deficiency has long been known to cause infancy sudden death from failure of this center in brainstem.

Thiamine Deficiency and Sympathetic – Parasympathetic Regulation

The hypothalamus is in the center of the brain computer and it presides over the ANS, as well as the endocrine (hormone) system. The ANS has two channels of communication known as sympathetic (governs action) and parasympathetic (governs the body mechanisms that can be performed when we are in a safe environment: e.g. bowel activity, sleep, etc.). When the ANS system is damaged, sometimes by genetic influence, but more commonly by poor diet (fuel), our adaptive ability is impaired. A marginal energy situation might become full blown by a stress factor. In this light, we can view vaccines and medications as stress factors. From false signal interpretation, we may feel cold in a warm environment, exhibiting “goose bumps on the skin”, or we may feel hot in a cold environment and experience profuse sweating. The overriding fatigue is an exhibition of cellular energy failure in brain perception.

Sometimes, it really is the simple, overlooked, elements that cause the most devastating consequences to human health. Thiamine deficiency is one of those elements.

To learn more about thiamine testing: Thiamine Deficiency Testing: Understanding the Labs.

 

This article was published previously on Hormones Matter in October 2013.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Share
Previous Article

Triptans ± SSRIs ± Migraines ± Depression: Flip a Coin!

Next Article

Deadly Blood Clots from the NuvaRing: Erika’s Legacy

You may also like

62 Comments

  1. Dear Dr. Lonsdale,

    This website and your book have given me hope again. I want to thank you personally.

    A little about me: I am a 21 year old female engineering student (I was actually biochemistry for 2 years prior!). I was diagnosed with Mitral Valve Prolapse about a year and a half ago and I have had dysautonomia symptoms for several years, the worst being extreme difficulty with regulating my electrolytes and fluids. I was born and raised in Phoenix, AZ and keeping adequate balance for hydration has seemed so impossible, especially with the heat. I have been researching this condition since the diagnosis, reading all the available resources on Mitral Valve Prolapse I could find and I have implemented the most common recommendations (magnesium, no sugar, no caffeine, extra salt, plenty of water, etc) and the only time I have felt true relief was during a 6 month period following a ketogenic diet. I recently broke this and turned to the typical American sugar consumption party for about a week (spring break) and then resumed a low carbohydrate eating plan. This was about 2 weeks ago and I have been really struggling with a resurgence of dysautonomia symptoms. I am hoping this is just a result of re-adaptation to low carb eating and that I will get back to the good point I was at.

    For the last few days, I have spent every waking minute researching more about my condition and I realized it may be a better plan to try to find out the root cause of dysautonomia, because it simply did not make sense to me how this could be related to a “benign” heart defect. Anyways, today by pure chance I happened to watch a video about B1 deficiency and realized those were all my symptoms. I wanted to find a book about it so I looked up Vitamin B1 on Amazon books and then I stumbled on your book titled “Thiamine Deficiency Disease, Dysautonomia, and High Calorie Malnutrition” on Amazon. I saw that the first 80 pages are available to read on Google books so I read those pages between my classes today and I am finally feeling like things make sense! Once I graduate, I will absolutely order the book and continue learning about this. After class I picked up some B1 and I took it and I know this sounds crazy but my brain fog diminished substantially after about 30 minutes. I have been smiling all day at the thought that these terrible symptoms might be reversible.

    Dr. Lonsdale, I am so unbelievably thankful for your work and I have so many questions for you. I really hope we can talk more about all these various conditions with this underlying factor. I find it so sad that there is not more communication among medical professionals about dysautonomia and what to do about it. All I was told from my doctor is too eat more salt and essentially live with it. I am very optimistic about thiamine after reading your work and if this helps reverse some of these symptoms I’ve been struggling with, I will absolutely tell everyone in the MVP online groups I’m in about this and even make an awareness video for everyone to see if I have to! The amount of research I had to do to even get to this point should not be necessary for a patient, this should be standard advice with a dysautonomia diagnosis. In one of the MVP online groups I am in (5000+ people), there are so many posts every single day about debilitating dysautonomia symptoms these people are dealing with, with absolutely no direction to follow. I am hoping thiamine is able to help us. I also hope that you can somehow reach out to cardiologists about this issue as it really truly saddens me. If I was not your typical broke college student I would be sending copies of your book to all the cardiologists I possibly could, haha!

    I would love to hear from you if you have the time and also provide you with some updates about my condition as I continue to supplement thiamine and any improvements that hopefully come my way! Thank you again.

    Emily

  2. this is one of the best things i ever read
    suffering from CFS for 6 years, i think due to alcohol abuse.
    HR rising dramatically (from 60 to 100) after a high intake of sugar and fast carbs (white rice) etc.
    Body cant seem to handle the extra glucose, yet I am not diabetic.
    I have hectic adrenaline surges and panic attacks from very small triggers, yet deep down I am a calm guy. Totally bizarre.
    When I overdo the sugar loading, the CFS gets worse, and so does the periphal neuropathy. I assume the extra glucose is making extra oxidative damage to nerve ending.When I eat low carb,,,,symptoms improve dramtically.
    I just started thiamine and magnesium to see if I can get to next functional level of CFS.
    I went from function of 4/10 to 7/10 by adding ALA 1800mg and Glutathione (1000mg) daily and lowish carb ingestion.

    Thanks Derrick.
    Its a amazing resource and I do believe CFS is recoverable once person finds and removes the original immune insult.
    Warm regards.

      1. Hello Dr Lonsdale:
        We have been discussing my 8 year old son on another page of this forum. I had seen improvements in coordination and longer sentences with my son on the spectrum who has a high IQ, with first high dose and I have lowered the dose of Thiamine to 15 mg. He has a problem with too much Clostridia and Thiamine seems to be exasterbating that. I am now giving the Thiamine with B2, Magnesium and Grapefruit seed extract because he is now going into rage (anger) that was not happening before Thiamine. The GSE seems to calm the rage pretty quickly.
        I had tried Allithiamine and he was zoning out in mid sentence and then not remembering what he was going to say. Any advice would be great! Thank you in advance

        1. How is his diet? If it is high in conventionally grown produce, processed foods, etc., it is likely also high in glyphosate exposure and glyphosate increases clostridia infections. Similarly, diets in high in processed foods are low in nutrients, high in carbohydrates which deplete thiamine even further. 15mg is not nearly high enough and Dr. Lonsdale will agree.

          1. Chandler Marrs, thank you for your input, I have a child not on the spectrum that eats a healthy Whole Foods diet including sugar. His twin brother on the spectrum eats a Whole Foods diet with NO SUGAR. People who eat with us are shocked. BUT CHANDLER that 7 year diet has not cured his autism. He is very recovered but on the onset of his situation Clostridia and yeast became high. I had the yeast totally in control UNTIL I ADDED Thiamine. It seemed to make yeast bloom. Am I incorrect?
            I think possibly Clostridia can only be corrected with a fecal transplant

            1. Whole foods are great, but are they organic? The herbicide glyphosate used on all non-organic produce and eaten by non-organically raised livestock and in all non-organic wheat etc. makes the clostridia grow. It is not the cure all that folks would have us believe. Clostridia is a bacteria. Does he have a yeast issue too? Clostridia in thiamine deficient environments. The antibiotics used to clear it leech thiamine and so it becomes a reinforcing cycle.
              If he has yeast infections, thiamine also helps with yeast, but so too does high dose biotin.

              Question: Did you ever use trehalose as a supplement? A while back that was promoted in the Autism community. It too increases clostridia infections, and in fact, makes the more virulent. Again, thrives in thiamine deficient environments.

              Fecal transplant comes with a host of side effects that are only now beginning to be understood. I would not consider that except as an absolute last resort.

              I am sure Dr. Lonsdale will weigh in tomorrow as well.

              1. These comments are interesting. ! 1. An organic diet WITH SUGAR is NOT an organic diet. The reason has been posted before now. 2. Why do you conclude that thiamine “caused yeast to flourish”? Read on Hormones Matter about “paradox” also known as “refeeding syndome” . The idea that suddenly taking a supplement of thiamine will produce cure is obviously a pipe dream. 3. Taking an “organic diet” will not CURE autism. The balance between the calorie load and the necessary introduction of the thiamine/magnesium supplement will take time.

                1. Agreed, but I was commenting about the fact that non-organic foods come with herbicides that directly induce gut microbiome changes that include increased clostridia. So even if the diet contains ‘whole foods’ as was indicated and even if sugars are removed from the diet, if those whole foods come from conventionally grown processes, gut bacteria will be altered negatively. With a child or adult who already has altered gut microbiota, the diet will have to be cleaned even further. To boot, conventionally grown foods contain markedly less micro and macronutrients than their organic counterparts. Having said that, thiamine has to be added, at higher doses than currently being used. The paradoxical reactions endured and time taken to see the effects.

                2. I may have confused the subject. I have 2 eight year olds (fraternal twins) and as I say above only my Neurotypical child eats sugar.
                  I am seeing that the Thiamine has already completely irradiated my Spectrum son’s wiggling and movement disorders, that has happened very quickly. His recall of information seems quicker already also. There has been a lot of caughing during this healing process, something in his lungs is loosening up! I will continue this protocol and yes I do give magnesium!!! Thank you Dr. Lonsdale!!! I appreciate your spotlighting this dangerous deficiency!

              2. Chandler, yes our whole family eats organic , grass fed organic beef being our favorite, but we also eat chicken, eggs, and vegetables, all organic. I am very aware of glyphosate. My son has seen improvements with Thiamine, I am still wondering if Thiamine usually increases Clostridia? I’m trying to make sure I have a strategy to not increase Clostridia, right now I am using Grapefruit seed extract to contain that. I am wondering what Dr Lonsdale thinks about Clostridia while dosing Thiamine.Also I never use the product you mention. Thank you for your input.

                1. Good.
                  No, thiamine will not increase clostridia per se. It will however, re-balance the gut ecosystem, allowing the other bacterial strains that compete with clostridia to grow and tamp down the more pathological ones. All bacteria need nutrients and most share similar pathways for processing them. It seems though that the species that are most competent at surviving nutrient deprived environments are also the ones that become the most virulent/pathological. If you rebalance the environment by providing the essential nutrients, the ‘good’ bacteria, can take over again, so to speak. The bad bacteria are always already there, but they are kept in check by the others. It’s only when the environment becomes so starved of nutrients that they can then thrive. This is a gross oversimplification, but the gist is that thiamine is needed for all bacteria, but the ecosystem favors the good bacteria with optimal nutrients and the bad bacteria with suboptimal nutrition. If you supply the body with sufficient energy, which is thiamine’s major role, then the body does what it needs to do to survive and health largely happens. If you don’t, then all sorts of adaptive processes develop. In the gut, the lack of energy/fuel = dysbiosis.

                  1. Chandler, thank you for the explanation, my son’s autism symptoms started with very bad stomach problems, vomiting and diarrhea that persisted for months, at that same time his back legs were not working when he was crawling. He somehow learned to walk and During a stomach problem hospitalization the IV may have had Thiamine in it he was doing better when he was released. But I was NEVER told to give him Thiamine. We went to a specialist who put him on p5p and b-12. We were giving those for 2 years And they really didn’t help. We went to another specialist and still he was never put on Thiamine. I am glad that I found Dr.Lonsdales papers on Beriberi. My son had ever symptom of dry and wet Beriberi when he was very little. He must have picked up some Thiamine from his very healthy diet because half of his symptoms resolved. He was already getting magnesium and Now with the addition of Thiamine the change in his gate is very noticeable and there is a change in his vocal tone and a nice calmness too. We are at 2 weeks of dosing Thiamine plus his usual magnesium.

                    1. That is entirely possible. Thiamine is never considered, even in cases of clear deficiency. For reason, everyone is under the assumption that we resolved thiamine deficiency in the population with modern food technologies when in fact, it is exactly the opposite. There are so many hits to the mitochondria, by medication, diet and general everyday exposure to pollutants that thiamine insufficiency is rampant and when it becomes severe, neurological symptoms ensue.
                      You might also consider getting our book. It will provide further insight. There are hundreds of case studies as well as a complete guide to the chemistry so that educated parents like yourself can navigate these processes and recovery.
                      https://www.amazon.com/dp/B073NCFNLX?ref_=cm_sw_r_kb_dp_3v7Gzb7N0R25M&tag=hormonesmatte-20&linkCode=kpe

    1. Thiamine improves cellular energy, increasing efficiency of action. Therefore it can be expected that Allithiamine might increase the effectiveness of the drug and produce ??more side effects or toxicity by the equivalent of increasing the dose of the drug. Vitamins have been called “prodrugs” because of this.

        1. Fat solubility is a technical error. It refers to the ability of TTFD to pass through the lipid barrier in cell membranes. No need to take oil

  3. Hi Dr. Lonsdale,

    I wanted to ask you what the relation of thiamine is to collagen deficiency and connective tissue disorders.

    I have been talking to my doctor lately about my POTS syndrome and if it could be related to a connective tissue disorder called Ehler Danlos Syndrome where the body does not produce collagen correctly.

    I’ve been taking thiamine and magnesium for several years now, since 2013 and have had great results, but never seem to get 100% better.

    Is there a relation to thiamine and collagen production or connective tissue disorders?

    Thank you and God bless.

    1. Hi Rachael, both POTS and Ehrlers Danlos syndrome are examples of a complex of conditions that come under the heading of dysautonomia. The trouble with answering your question is that dysautonomia is an example of energy deficiency in the lower brain and in the nervous system as well. To make collagen requires energy and the only reason for taking megadoses of thiamin and magnesium is that both are essential components of energy synthesis. Of course, thiamin and magnesium are not the only stimulants in the synthesis of energy so you will need to add at least B complex and a multivitamin to your regimen. It demands a completely different perspective on the cause and treatment of disease.

  4. An interesting connection between thiamin and many of the symptoms you mention is D-lactic acid. The D form of lactic acid is a neurotoxin. Thiamin helps the body convert it. Without enough thiamin, it builds up and causes transient symptoms until the body can clear it through the liver. The D form of lactic acid can be increased in the body with too many probiotic bacteria that produce D-lactic acid (Different probiotic bacteria produce different forms of lactic acid – the L form is not toxic, the D form is)

    1. This is more complex than it looks. Diabetics produce a substance called methylglyoxal from which d lactic acid forms. The reason that thiamine is effective is because it stimulates the anaerobic pentosephosphate pathway and maximizes the enzyme transketolase. This results in preventing the accumulation of methylglyoxal and other toxic compounds that are responsible for some of the complications in diabetes. Yes, d lactic acid is indeed toxic but is not normally formed in the human body. It is the result of abnormal metabolism.

  5. Thanks a lot for all these good articles about thiamine! They are eye-opening for many people with different health issues.
    I took thiamine (HCl form) as a child at the recommendation of my pediatrician. I had asthma at that time along with a lot of issues (night terrors, high fever episodes, was underweight ..). Took lot of prednisone..
    I have to say that I had poor diet and lived in an industrial area (with increased pollution) which probably caused a lot of my health issues;
    I also had issues with vaccines so my doctor gave me only few of them.
    However at 15 (after a Flixotide treatment prescribed by a pneumologist in the city) my asthma has turned off forever. No crises episode since then.
    Later I went to university and due to intense learning , felt very tired. Doctors again said to take vitamins. Among others I took again thiamine (HCl). It helped tremendously. During exam sessions I was eating even 1 kilo of chocolate per week (needed to help me stay awake and learn 🙂 ). I was also taking my thiamine pills..for me they were like food..I felt like eating them..Now looking at this information I understand that my high carbs intake made me feel like eating B1 vitamins..I didn’t have this information then but my body just knew.
    After graduating, got hired and observed thiamine get out of the market so I forgot about it. Remembered again after I discovered I had endometriosis and had a lap. After the lap I had all kind of sympthoms..like my brain was not functioning same anymore. Discovered I was compond heterozygous on MTHFR. Doctor told me that should have had another type of anesthesia ..but didn’t have that information before the lap.
    Now I fight with endo..it seems it came back. Started to take again thaimine (allithiamine form) and it helps a lot with pain and mental clarity..but I am afraid it will stimulate endometriosis tissues to grow as B1 stimulates all cells mitochondria (including tumors’s mito). Shall I respect any dosage?

    (I am also deficient in vitamin D. Blood tests show that 25-h D form is minimum after 1 week vacation at the sea. I assume that in the winter it will drop below minimum level necessary for a good functioning. So I plan to take Lipo vitamin D too to help me with inflammation)

  6. I’ve been extremely sick since January. Severe anxiety but I know it’s not anxiety, it’s something else. Food just ‘sits’ in my stomach, and I get severe fatigue, sleep and wake up panicking, sweating, face flushing. Had my gallbladder out in June. When doctors check my reflexes in my knees, it never works, and barely works in my ankles. My b12 is 380 and doctors say its normal. I can’t afford a b1 test and all the doctors say its all anxiety. I’ve been told I chase diagnoses…No, I don’t. I researched until I presented with my doctor that I may have hypermobility as my family does and I was diagnosed by a geneticist. He said I needed to fix whats in my head to fix “Ibs” Told me to do hypnosis for the severely painful fissue in my anus. All the doctors in my town (Ellensburg) Are like this, they blame everything on my anxiety. My ferritin is at 28, hair is falling out “Its just stress” I have severe motility issues where anything I eat causes severe face flushing and profound fatigue. I’m bedridden and I have suicidal thoughts (When my heart rate is fast which is usually always) but especially after I eat. I wish someone could help me with this.

    1. I have never seen a better example of medical ignorance. In spite of the fact that Caila states that she has been severely ill since January, her physicians fail to recognize that she clearly has a metabolic disease. Anxiety, fast heart rate, fatigue, panic, sweating, failure of knee reflexes are ALL due to unbalanced action of the autonomic nervous system and the high B12 level is typical of cellular energy failure. Hypermobility is also related to dysautonomia (Ehrlers Danlos Syndrome). This is a dangerous state to be in and needs urgent therapy with intravenous vitamins, including thiamine. You must find a physician that understands mitochondrial disease because beginning thiamine may initially make symptoms worse and is known as ” refeeding syndrome”. This utterly tragic situation is all too common in America. Please get our book, Lonsdale and Marrs, “Thiamine Deficiency Disease, Dysautonomia and High Calorie Malnutrition” (available on Amazon) and SHOW it to your physicians.

    2. Endometriosis responds very well to oral administration of approximately 1 part GLA (omega 6) to 8 parts EPA(omega 3) fatty acids. Set the dose of GLA and derive dose of EPA from it.

  7. My daughter’s blood test showed low B1. She started taking thiamine hcl and symptoms improved a lot – her bad digestion, terrible sleep apnea and fatigue improved, but unfortunately she is experiencing urinary retention. In your experience, Dr. Lonsdale, can urinary retention be caused when starting B1 supplementation? Is it because there could be a deficiency of another vitamin or mineral as well? Thank you for your help Dr. Lonsdale. I hope we find a solution to the urinary retention because the B1 has helped her so much.

    1. Try adding 300 mg of magnesium a day plus a multivitamin. Thiamin does not work on its own. Stop all intake of sugar in all its different forms

      1. Our son as a history of anxiety, night terrors, etc. He also has a history of ear infections, sore throats, fevers, and a lymph node that was surgically drained due to a large infection. At his 11 year old well visit he was vaccinated (TDap and Meningitis). Three days later he had a fever, headache, and extreme anxiety. We asked for a full blood work up. His Viramin B1 levels were 14 nmol /L (flagged critical) and Folate was >24 MG/ML (flagged high). No one has consulted with us about these levels. How do I further pursue

        1. Oh my goodness, a vitamin B1 level described as critical. The folate in the blood increased. He has rampant beriberi and the thiamine replacement is urgent. When he had anxiety, night terrors, ear infections, headaches and fever, he was already thiamine deficient. The vaccination precipitated worsening of the deficiency. How can a physician possibly ignore such severe symptoms?

  8. Hi Dr Lonsdale,

    You can refer back in our thread for my case, but i have been taking lipothiamine since August after suffering from fluoroquinolone toxicity and beriberi and have been getting better and better and better since! I had some bloodwork done in October and my thyroid numbers were moving in the right direction which made me so excited. I have had CBC several times over the last year and my eosinophils were high for the first time on this round of blood work. Is this related to the thiamine supplementation?

    This month i was feeling so fantastic, i felt better and healthier than i did BEFORE taking Cipro and my health crash! I cried tears of joys because i felt healed and free. I applied for life insurance and received the top rating that only a few clients receive and the lowest premium.

    Last December, after taking Cipro, a holistic Dr ordered a ton of lab work trying to figure out what was wrong with me. He ordered many random tests including a full allergy panel. I was shocked when the report came back that i was allergic to almost everything they tested. The results were very low to low level allergies but still why so many that i never knew about. Nonetheless i cut out all of the foods it listed. I often asked if the test could be replicated, if it was valid or if allergies could change over time. He never was able to give me an answer.

    Fast back forward to this month, I’m feeling better than ever. I’m working out 3 times a week, going to bible study and church, taking care of my kids and home, living a full life. My thyroid has gotten better, all my symptoms have either disappeared completely or are almost gone. I ask my dr to reorder that allergy panel to see if the allergies went away. I get my blood drawn on November 10th and leave for vacation to the Colorado mountains on November 13th.

    While I’m in Colorado, I am having a great time but feeling the effects of the high altitude. The first day i arrive i take my thiamine with lunch and feel my heart beating faster. This also happens on the second day and i felt car sick while driving up the mountain to look at a lake called the Maroon Bells. On the third day, we drive to Vail. I skipped my thiamine that day to see if it was related to the heart racing. That night i started having a strange sensation that i was suffocating even though i was breathing. I felt ok when i woke up on the 4th day. I was eating lunch outside surrounded by mountains and trees when i got my allergy report in. Not only did my allergies get tremendously worse, i gained new allergies! How could this be, i thought? I’m surrounded by trees and am completely fine. This doesn’t make any sense. I was feeling better and healthier than i had in years. I rarely ever have to take an antihistamine. Is this test just being interpreted incorrectly, something is not adding up. Could the high eosinophils give a false positive?

    Anyway, on the 5th day I fly back home and have still been having the air hunger sensation off and on despite living at almost sea level. I’ve been home from almost two days and can tell something is off. I’ve been tripping over words and caught myself slurring. The air hunger sensation is unsettling and scares me as does the cognitive issues. My beriberi symptoms before included foot numbness, neuropathy, feeling strange and out of it. It is different symptoms this time. Have i relapsed due to the stressor of the altitude? I also broke my very strict diet while traveling due to lack of food options and had some candy and an oatmeal bar that had added sugar which I know now is a big no no. Should i up my thiamine dose? I’m heartbroken to have this set back after getting my life back. I have worked so hard for an entire year to get healthy after taking Cipro.

    What should i do about the allergy testing? Should i be worried about it? First one was taken last December when i was VERY sick and the current one was taken when I was feeling better than I ever have.

    Thank you for your time reading this long message.

    1. Although this post was written last November, I came across it only recently and wish to make a reply because it contains important truths. Notice that this individual experienced typical symptoms, that, if they had been more severe, they would have been referred to as “mountain sickness”. What it means is this: her brain cells were not getting enough oxygen at altitude, inducing low-grade hypoxia (insufficient oxygen) required for oxidation (metabolic use of oxygen). In addition she took some sugar that would raise the bar for oxidation. There are three aspects in this individual to be noted. 1. She would be expected to be of superior intelligence. An intelligent brain requires more energy than a less intelligent one, just like the difference between a high-grade sports car and a less powerful one. 2. She already knew that she had a problem with thiamin that had been a necessary treatment for her original symptoms. Thiamin guarantees oxygen utilization in much the same way as a spark plug guarantees gasoline use.3. Sugar tends to induce thiamin deficiency and my analogy is again in a car. Too much gasoline in a cylinder overwhelms the spark plug and is known as a choked engine.
      Turning this into a metabolic process, absorption of thiamin into body cells, particularly those of the brain, is under genetic control and this may be defective so that she has a difficulty in absorbing the vitamin. On the other hand, not realizing the importance of pristine nutrition for a high IQ brain, she may have been experiencing high calorie malnutrition, referred to above as “a choked engine”.

  9. Dear Dr. Lonsdale… I appreciate this article so much… I was “floxed” 5 months ago. I am 73 year old female.. so a bitter result from taking Cipro for a simple U.T.I. Other than thyroid problems I was exceptionally healthy and fit for my age or for the age of 40 for that matter. I now have symptoms of Chronic Fatigue among other issues. My research (about 50 hours I think) led me to your article as I was learning about the mitochondria, which brought me to Hormone Matters and some of Lisa Bloomquist’s articles (also reading Floxie Hope). When I read about Thiamine I wanted to know how much to take and if it was safe… some online searching brought me to the information below which I think you will find of interest:

    “Then a little over a month ago, a new fibromyalgia study caught my eye – “High-dose thiamine improves the symptoms of fibromyalgia.” It was a very small study conducted by a group of researchers in Italy.* In fact, the study was so small – only three FM patients – that I normally wouldn’t give it much weight. But the dramatic improvement in fatigue and pain levels experienced by all three participants piqued my interest. ” Link –
    http://www.prohealth.com/library/showarticle.cfm?libid=18187
    Suggest reading right through comments below the adverts.

    After reading the article above, I decided to try Thiamine – 6 days now.. experimenting with dosage along with magnesium and COQ10. Immediate results were more energy and feeling better in many ways, including improved brain fog.. But I do think the thiamine is now having an affect on dosage of Levothyroxine now and not feeling so great… still I remain hopeful on B1.

    * Dr. Antonio Costantini has also been doing research and testing (small samplings) on thiamine and I think you will find some of his work of interest if you are unaware of this Italian doctor.
    (his other work definitely suggests that the thiamine is affecting my thyroid meds)

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=Costantini%20A%5BAuthor%5D&cauthor=true&cauthor_uid=23696141

    Thank you for all your fine work and articles.

  10. I found an interesting study thar showed that quinolines turn off SLC19A3, which seems to explain my horrendous symptoms after taking Cipro. Thiamin seems to be helping. Thank you for this article.

  11. Hi, I had an article that I wanted to share with you about thiamine mononitrate.

    “The Journal of Nutrition reported in 1985 that diets fortified with thiamine mononitrate do not compensate for lower thiamine levels in rats that were thiamine deficient. Therefore, you may want to seek a more natural source of thiamine.” ( http://www.livestrong.com/article/498105-vitamin-b-complex-vs-green-urine/ )

    If modern methods of food production of mainly wheat and rice involves the removal of natural thiamine and replaces it with a synthetic form that is not usable to the body, this means that all foods in the US that are fortified with thiamine mononitrate are essentially creating a thiamine deficiency. Would you agree with this assessment?

    Thank you so much for your time and research. You are the only person that I have found in the last 3-4 years now that is actively trying to research the importance of thiamine in our modern diets. 🙂

    1. Sounds like BS to me but I have never used thiamine mononitrate. As for the color of urine as a mark of toxicity from vitamin B, I have never experienced it in anybody and I have used vitamin B in literally thousands of patients.

  12. Several questions, kind sir.

    Do you have a preference between Allithiamine and Lipothiamine? If so, please explain why.

    Since they are fat soluble, are they effective if taken on an empty stomach, or should they be taken with a fat-containing meal?

    If taking one of those two, would there be any reason to concomitantly take Benfotiamine, regular B-1 (Thiamine HCl), or sublingual cocarboxylase?

    Could Authia cream be beneficial for peripheral (diabetic) neuropathy if applied to the feet? Would adding DMSO to the topical application enhance any possible benefit?

    Thank you so much.

    1. Both of them are thiamine tetrahydrofurfuryl disulfide (TTFD). Lipothiamine was a later development than Allithiamine and both are sold by the same company. Lipothiamine is enteric coated so that it passes more easily through stomach acid. Thiamine is absorbed in the jejunum. TTFD is called “fat soluble” only because it passes through the lipid barrier of the cell membrane. It is actually soluble in water and can be given intravenously. Benfotiamine is not a disulfide and the prosthetic group has to be removed by an enzyme in the liver or kidney. Neither does it cross the blood brain barrier. It has been used with success in diabetic peripheral neuropathy. In my view, TTFD is the best of all the thiamine derivatives that have been synthesized and there is no need for combinations.

        1. Unfortunately, there is a colossal amount of ignorance that surrounds substances that are referred to as thiamine derivatives. All of them are dependent on the discovery that a disulfide derivative of thiamine occurs naturally in garlic and other species of the allium plants. All these synthetic derivatives can be divided into two groups. One group is known as the disulfides. Sulbutiamine is a member of this group. Fursultiamine, Lipothiamine, Alinamin and perhaps others are all disulfides. The formula of thiamine in chemical terms consists of a pyrimidine ring joined to a thiazolium ring by a methylene bridge. All thiamine derivatives are created by attaching what is known as a prosthetic group to the thiazolium ring. The disulfide acts as the attaching mechanism. At the cell membrane, the disulfide is reduced non-enzymatically and allows the intact thiamine molecule to pass through the cell membrane into the cell. Because of this ability for the intact thiamine molecule to pass through the lipid barrier of the cell membrane, all thiamine derivatives are known as “fat-soluble”.It does not mean that they have to be dissolved in fat. The other group of derivatives, known as the S acyl group require an enzyme in the liver or kidney to separate the prosthetic group from the thiamine molecule. Benfotiamine is a member of this group. I am sorry to be highly technical but there is so much mystery surrounding these derivatives, that I want people to understand one simple thing. All of them deliver thiamine into the cell and therefore are exactly the same as naturally occurring thiamine. It is just a manner of delivery that counts. This is very important because the disulfide derivatives are soluble in water and can be given intravenously. Benfotiamine is not soluble in water and cannot be given intravenously. An announcement on the Internet says that Sulbutiamine “has to be dissolved in fat”, a statement that is inaccurate and ridiculous. The derivative that I have studied in detail and used to treat many many patients has the chemical name of thiamin tetrahydrofurfuryl disulfide (TTFD), sold under two trade names, Lipothiamine and Fursultiamine. Both of them are TTFD.

    2. I have been studying thiamine for 35 years. I have taken hundreds if not thousands of doses of B complex with or without thiamine as an extra. I have never seen colored urine and I have never seen the symptoms described as a toxic reaction. In fact, they are the typical symptoms of thiamine deficiency as described in beriberi. I have never used the mononitrate and believe that the symptoms ol thiamin deficiency are because of a huge intake of empty calories.

      1. Dr. Lonsdale,

        This is the link to the LiveStrong article that I sent to you a while ago. For some odd reason it posted incorrectly to your comments section of your website. >>>> http://www.livestrong.com/article/313249-the-side-effects-of-thiamine-mononitrate/ <<<<

        The article says that, "The Journal of Nutrition reported in 1985 that diets fortified with thiamine mononitrate do not compensate for lower thiamine levels in rats that were thiamine deficient. Therefore, you may want to seek a more natural source of thiamine.”

        So does this mean that thiamine mononitrate is creating a deficiency in processed foods?

        Thanks for your time and help. 🙂

  13. Just read your article for the fifth time and wanted to outline all the symptoms of b1 deficiency that either my daughter with apraxia, and my older daughter (who was also affected by magnesium deficiency and b1 deficiency, but in completely different ways), experienced that are also outlined in your article: older daughter has shown signs of POTS once, she stood up then fell over, it was scary, this could have been increased heart rate when standing, then the drop in blood pressure, typical of POTS, which caused her to fall for no apparent reason (at the time). Older daughter has had the panic attacks. Younger daughter shows signs of impaired oxidative metabolism. Low b1 affected my younger one’s satiety center for sure, she had low appetite most of the time, then suddenly such high appetite she would gorge herself and throw up. Bowel activity was affected for sure, she was constipated, and she had very poor sleep.

  14. Sorry also wanted to add just how b1 deficiency in a very young child would cause a gray tone in the area where the eyes should be white. b1 is required for the production of collagen, and a lack of collagen would prevent the white of the eyes from developing properly (as well as preventing bones from growing properly). Hope this helps someone out there. This is somewhat related to a genetic condition called Osteogenesis imperfecta, which prevents collagen from being used by the body, however, I don’t think my daughter has that condition, I think it was the magnesium deficiency, accompanying vitamin b1 deficiency, then the collagen issue.

  15. I appreciate this post. My four year old girl never took Gardasil, however I believe she has been suffering from thiamine or b1 deficiency because of my calcium supplementation while breastfeeding her. I believe that too much calcium in the breastmilk caused a magnesium deficiency, and since magnesium is the cofactor for b1, this caused the b1 deficiency. Since she was younger, she had different symptoms, including complete regression of speech at 11 months, not speaking again until 18 months, apraxia (still persisting), ataxia, loss of eye contact, repetition of same phrase for one year, symptoms of autism, constipation, nystagmus, mini-coma, gray where her eyes should have been white, low muscle tone, malabsorption, very low appetite most of the time, inability to tan, inability to fall asleep and stay alseep. Not sure which symptoms would be attributable to the b1 deficiency, or the magnesium deficiency, or other issue. Just posting this information in case another parent is trying to connect the dots too. Also, want to point out, in my daughter’s case, she needed magnesium and b1, not just the b1.

  16. Unfortunately this information is too late for my friend who is passed now. He was prescribed a course of Cipro for a sinus infection which resulted in a syndrome of fatigue, insatiable hunger, pain and difficulty breathing. He went to multiple doctors none of whom gave him an accurate diagnosis, while he himself was mistakenly convinced it was a yeast infection.

    1. It definitely sounds to me like your friend had a yeast overgrowth. Are you assuming that it wasn’t or you have evidence that it was all a serious thiamine deficinecy?

  17. Unfortunately, prolonged deficiency or abnormal thiamine metabolism leaves its mark and I don’t want to give false hope. There is, however, no alternative to using thiamine supplementation since it is safe.

  18. Thank you very much for the article, Dr. Lonsdale! I have been eating a couple cloves of crushed raw garlic every day since I read your last post on HormonesMatter. I hope that it helps me to resolve some of my last remaining ANS issues that are a result of an adverse reaction to Cipro. Your articles on Thiamine make me hopeful that the damage done by cipro is a result of Thiamine deficiency, not DNA damage. Thank you for both the insight and the hope!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

two × 5 =

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.