Healthy nerves need vi­ta­min B

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Body, Mind & Soul - For en­quiries, e-mail to ch.my@mer­ck­group.com or visit your doc­tors or phar­ma­cists to find out more about Neu­ro­bion. KKLIU No.0820/2015

IF you ex­pe­ri­ence pain, numb­ness or tin­gling in the hands or feet, you may have a health prob­lem known as neu­ropa­thy. This hap­pens when your nerves have be­come dam­aged.

There are many causes for it, such as di­a­betes, in­juries, in­fec­tions, wear­ing high heels, pro­longed sit­ting and repet­i­tive ac­tiv­i­ties like typ­ing.

It could also be caused by sim­ply not get­ting enough vi­ta­min B in the diet. Vi­ta­min B1, B6 and B12 are im­por­tant nu­tri­ents for healthy nerves.

Although vi­ta­min B is read­ily avail­able in a wide range of food sources, it is wa­ter­sol­u­ble. The body does not store it and gets rid of what it does not re­quire through urine and sweat in a short time.

Risks of vi­ta­min B de­fi­ciency

De­fi­ciency in vi­ta­min B oc­curs in cases of di­a­betes. Re­searchers say that 30% of all cases of nerve dam­age arise due to di­a­betes. The high blood sugar lev­els of di­a­bet­ics cause dam­age to the nerves.

About 60% to 70% of di­a­bet­ics have some form of neu­ropa­thy. They are of­ten de­fi­cient in vi­ta­min B be­cause it be­comes rapidly de­pleted in their bod­ies.

Oth­ers who are also at risk of be­com­ing de­fi­cient in vi­ta­min B and de­vel­op­ing neu­ropa­thy in­clude al­co­hol drinkers, veg­e­tar­i­ans and the el­derly.

These peo­ple may need to take a high dose com­bi­na­tion of vi­ta­mins B1, B6 and B12 to pre­vent or slow down the pro­gres­sion of di­a­betes or other form of neu­ropa­thy.

Vi­ta­min B func­tions

Vi­ta­min B1 (thi­amine) is used by the body to metabolise car­bo­hy­drates and turn it into en­ergy. De­fi­ciency of vi­ta­min B1 can lead to neu­ropa­thy. This may cause ex­treme pain and may af­fect nu­mer­ous pro­cesses in the body; in­clud­ing proper func­tion of the mus­cu­lar and neu­ro­log­i­cal sys­tems.

Most peo­ple get thi­amine from whole grains and for­ti­fied break­fast ce­re­als. Thi­amine de­fi­ciency af­fects me­tab­o­lism and its abil­ity to process car­bo­hy­drate. The blood sugar can then in­crease to high lev­els lead­ing to nerve dam­age.

An­other is vi­ta­min B6, also known as pyri­dox­ine, nec­es­sary for proper trans­mis­sion of nerve im­pulses. It can be found in food sources like fish, poul­try and liver. The ex­ces­sive glu­cose lev­els in di­a­bet­ics can cause dam­age to the nerves and re­sult in di­a­betic neu­ropa­thy.

Vi­ta­min B12, or cobal­amin, is im­por­tant for over­all nerve health and re­gen­er­ates nerves as well as pro­tects nerve cells from dam­age.

A de­fi­ciency of cobal­amin leads to numb­ness and tin­gling sen­sa­tion in the feet and hands in cases of neu­ropa­thy.

The main food sources for cobal­amin are an­i­mal-based, such as meat, fish, eggs, milk and dairy prod­ucts.

Vi­ta­min B12 is also nec­es­sary for red blood cell for­ma­tion and DNA syn­the­sis.

Avoid­ing neu­ropa­thy with vi­ta­min B

Although vi­ta­min B1, B6 and B12 are found in dif­fer­ent food sources, you may not be able to ab­sorb enough to pre­vent a de­fi­ciency due to certain con­di­tions. Neu­ro­bion is a health sup­ple­ment that con­tains vi­ta­mins B1, B6 and B12.

They work syn­er­gis­ti­cally and are vi­tal for keep­ing nerves healthy.

If you are at risk of be­com­ing de­fi­cient in vi­ta­mins B1, B6 and B12, you may need to sup­ple­ment your diet with Neu­ro­bion.

It is clin­i­cally tested to nour­ish the nerve cells, help im­prove nerve func­tion and re­lieve nerve pain.

The com­bi­na­tion of vi­ta­mins B1, B6 and B12 can help treat or slow down the pro­gres­sion of neu­ropa­thy.

If you have certain health prob­lems like di­a­betes, it is ad­vis­able to con­sult your doc­tor.

This ar­ti­cle is brought to you by Merck Con­sumer Health.

Ref­er­ences

Na­tional In­sti­tute of Di­a­betes and Di­ges­tives and Kid­ney Dis­eases. Di­a­betic Neu­ropathies: The Nerve Dam­age of Di­a­betes. Fe­bru­ary 2009, pp. 1-12.

Tong, H I. In­flu­ence of Neu­rotropic Vi­ta­mins on the Nerve Con­duc­tion Ve­loc­ity in Di­a­betic Neu­ropa­thy. An­nals Academy of Medicines. Jan­uary 1980, Vol. 9, 1.

Louis V. Ger­st­ner, Jr. Grad­u­ate School of Bio­med­i­cal Sciences. Cancer In­for­ma­tion. Me­mo­rial Sloan-Ket­ter­ing Cancer Cen­tre. [On­line] Sloan-Ket­ter­ing In­sti­tute, 2011. [Cited: September 7, 2011.] www.mskcc.org/ mskcc/html/69411.cfm.

M. V., Bor, et al., et al. Plasma Vi­ta­min B6 Vi­ta­mers Be­fore and After Oral Vi­ta­min B6 Treat­ment: A Ran­dom­ized Place­bo­con­trolled Study. Clin­i­cal Chem­istry. 2003, Vol. 49, 1, pp. 155Ð161.

5. N, Ra­banni, et al., et al. High-dose Thi­amine Ther­apy for Pa­tients with Type 2. Di­a­betolo­gia. 2009, Vol. 52, pp. 208Ð212.

Cen­ter for Pe­riph­eral Neu­ropa­thy. Types of Pe­riph­eral Neu­ropa­thy - Sys­temic / Meta­bolic. Learn About Pe­riph­eral Neu­ropa­thy. [On­line] 4 16, 2010. [Cited: 4 26, 2011.] pe­riph­er­al­neu­ropa­thy­cen­ter.uchicago.edu/learn­aboutpn/type­sofpn/sys­temic/nu­tri­tion.shtml.

Mayo Clinic. Thi­amine (Vi­ta­min B1). Mayo Clinic. [On­line] Mayo Foun­da­tion for Med­i­cal Ed­u­ca­tion and Re­search, 2011. [Cited: 10 14, 2011.] www.may­oclinic.com/ health/vi­ta­min-b1/NS_­pa­tient-thi­amin.

Na­tional In­sti­tute of Di­a­betes and Di­ges­tive and Kid­ney Dis­eases, di­a­betes. niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/neu­ropathies/

Neu­ro­bion is a health sup­ple­ment that con­tains vi­ta­mins B1, B6 and B12.

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