Benfotiamine: A Fat-Soluble Form Of Thiamine For Neuropathy

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Embarking on a journey towards improved health and wellbeing? Benfotiamine, a derivative of vitamin B1, could be your perfect partner. With its potential benefits ranging from enhanced nerve function to improved blood sugar control, it’s no wonder this supplement is rising in popularity. However, with an overwhelming number of options, where should you start? We’ve crafted this comprehensive guide to help you make an informed decision when you’re ready to buy Benfotiamine online. Let’s dive into the world of Benfotiamine, understand its advantages, and discover the best places to purchase this health-boosting supplement.

What Is Benfotiamine?

Benfotiamine is a synthetic derivative of thiamine (vitamin B1) which is an essential nutrient for human health. Unlike regular thiamine, benfotiamine is fat-soluble, allowing it to be more easily absorbed and used by the body. This key difference sets benfotiamine apart from water-soluble thiamine and is the reason for its popularity as a supplement.

Thiamine plays a critical role in energy metabolism, helping in the conversion of carbohydrates into energy, which is vital for the functioning of all cells, especially nerve and brain cells. However, thiamine is not stored in the body for long periods, necessitating a regular dietary intake. Benfotiamine is a more bioavailable form of thiamine, ensuring that the body receives and retains an adequate supply of this vitamin.

The structure of benfotiamine enables it to pass more easily through intestinal cells, entering the bloodstream and ultimately reaching the cells where it is needed. Once inside the body, benfotiamine is converted back into thiamine and goes on to perform the essential functions associated with vitamin B1.

Does Benfotamine Help Neuropathy?

Benfotiamine, a synthetic derivative of thiamine (vitamin B1), is proposed to improve neuropathy through several mechanisms of action. First, as a lipid-soluble form of thiamine, it is more readily absorbed and utilized by the body, effectively increasing thiamine levels in the tissues. Once absorbed, benfotiamine is converted into an active form of thiamine, which is essential for glucose metabolism.

In the context of neuropathy, especially diabetic neuropathy, high blood sugar levels can lead to the accumulation of harmful byproducts, such as advanced glycation end-products (AGEs). Benfotiamine helps to block the pathways that lead to the formation of these AGEs, thereby reducing their harmful effects on nerve cells.

Additionally, thiamine is crucial for nerve cell function and health; it plays a role in the synthesis of key neurotransmitters and supports the myelin sheath that protects nerve fibers. By enhancing thiamine availability, benfotiamine aids in maintaining nerve health and function.

It also has antioxidant properties, helping to combat oxidative stress, which is a significant factor in the development and progression of neuropathy. These combined actions make benfotiamine a valuable agent in managing and potentially improving symptoms of neuropathy, particularly in individuals with conditions like diabetes where thiamine deficiency and high blood sugar levels contribute to nerve damage.

What are the Health Benefits of Benfotiamine?

The health benefits of Benfotiamine have been studied in regards to its ability to manage certain health conditions.

  • Alcoholism Treatment Support: Benfotiamine has been used to help manage the effects of alcoholism, specifically by reducing the damage to the brain and liver caused by chronic alcohol consumption. [PMC4550087]
  • Alzheimer’s Disease Research: Some research has suggested that benfotiamine could potentially slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, but this is an area where more studies are needed to confirm these effects. [PMC5567484]
  • Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy: Benfotiamine might be beneficial in treating peripheral neuropathy, a condition that causes weakness, numbness, and pain from nerve damage, typically in the hands and feet. [PMID: 20069914][PMC4015539]
  • Heart Health: Some studies suggest that benfotiamine might help prevent heart disease by reducing the buildup of advanced glycation end-products (AGEs), harmful compounds that can accumulate in people with high blood sugar. [PMID: 29863274]
[PMID: 20188835]

Benfotiamine, AGEs, and Brain Health

A factor that may be driving Alzheimer’s is the harmful compounds known as advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs). There’s growing evidence that AGE build-up, and the related inflammation and oxidative stress – also contribute to the development and progression of Alzheimer’s. This means that anything that can help reduce glycation and AGE build-up could potentially also help prevent or slow down Alzheimer’s. AGEs can cause damage to cells and tissues, and they also interact with specific receptors (RAGE) on the surfaces of cells, leading to changes in cellular activities and an increase in harmful inflammatory molecules and free radicals. [PMID: 15620429]

In the trial, participants were given either benfotiamine (300 mg twice per day) or a placebo for a year. Those taking benfotiamine showed less cognitive decline than those taking the placebo. This was measured using a standard cognitive test and another dementia rating and the benefits were particularly good in participants who did not carry a specific gene variant (APOEɛ4) that’s associated with higher AD risk. Benfotiamine also led to a decrease in harmful AGE compounds, again more so in those without the APOEɛ4 variant. [PMC7880246]

What’s the Difference Between Thiamine and Benfotiamine?

Thiamine, also known as vitamin B1, is a water-soluble vitamin. Your body needs it to convert carbohydrates into energy. It also plays a role in nerve function. Because it’s water-soluble, excess amounts leave your body through urine.

Benfotiamine is a fat-soluble derivative of thiamine. Once inside cells, the body converts benfotiamine back into thiamine. This makes benfotiamine effective in situations where higher concentrations of thiamine are needed within cells.

Thiamine quickly dissolves in water, which makes it less effective at reaching tissues that need it. On the other hand, benfotiamine is more stable and can better target cells and tissues.

Both forms serve similar roles in metabolic processes, but their different solubility and absorption rates can make them suited for different applications.

Food Sources of Thiamine

Benfotiamine is a synthetic, fat-soluble form of thiamine (vitamin B1) and is not naturally found in foods. Instead, it is typically taken as a dietary supplement for its enhanced bioavailability compared to regular thiamine.

However, thiamine itself is found in a variety of foods. Here’s a brief list of some thiamine-rich foods:

FoodAmount of Thiamine per 100g
Pork0.6 mg
Trout0.5 mg
Peas0.3 mg
Sunflower Seeds1.5 mg
Lentils0.5 mg
Beans0.3 mg
Rice (Brown)0.2 mg
Bread (Whole Wheat)0.3 mg
The daily recommended intake of thiamine varies, but for adults, it’s typically about 1.2 mg for men and 1.1 mg for women.

Is Benfotamine Safe?

Benfotiamine, a synthetic form of vitamin B1 (thiamine), is generally considered safe and well-tolerated when used appropriately. As a lipid-soluble derivative of thiamine, it is known for its enhanced absorption and bioavailability compared to water-soluble forms of vitamin B1. Commonly used to treat thiamine deficiency and associated conditions, benfotiamine does not typically cause significant side effects. When side effects do occur, they are usually mild and might include gastrointestinal discomfort or allergic reactions.

Medication Interactions With Benfotamine

specific drug interactions with benfotiamine are not extensively documented, but here are a few considerations:

  • Diabetes Medications: Since benfotiamine can affect blood sugar levels, it may interact with diabetes medications. This interaction could necessitate adjustments in the dosing of diabetes medications to prevent hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia.
  • Other Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) Supplements: Taking benfotiamine in conjunction with other thiamine supplements could potentially lead to excessively high thiamine levels, although toxicity from thiamine is rare.
  • Chemotherapy Drugs: There is some evidence that high doses of vitamins can interfere with the effectiveness of certain chemotherapy drugs. While specific interactions with benfotiamine are not well-documented, caution is advised.
  • Diuretics: Some diuretics, especially loop diuretics, can increase the excretion of thiamine from the body. While this is more a concern for thiamine itself, individuals taking high doses of diuretics should be aware of their vitamin B1 levels.

Supplement Interactions With Benfotamine

as with any dietary supplement, there is always the potential for interactions, particularly when taken in combination with other supplements that affect similar pathways or have overlapping effects. Here are a few supplements that might interact with benfotiamine:

  • Other B Vitamins: Taking benfotiamine with other B complex vitamins, especially in high doses, could potentially affect the balance of these vitamins in the body. For instance, excessive intake of one B vitamin can mask deficiencies of others.
  • Magnesium: Magnesium plays a role in the activation of thiamine. While this is generally beneficial, excessive supplementation of both might lead to imbalances.
  • Alpha-Lipoic Acid: Both alpha-lipoic acid and benfotiamine are used to improve diabetic neuropathy. While they can be complementary, their combined use should be monitored for enhanced effects.
  • Antioxidant Supplements: Benfotiamine has antioxidant properties. When combined with other antioxidants (like vitamin C, vitamin E, or selenium), the overall antioxidant effect is amplified, which is generally positive but should be monitored for overall balance.

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Benfotiamine w/Thiamine by Life Extension

Benfotiamine, a fat-soluble form of vitamin B1 (thiamine), supports healthy blood sugar metabolism and helps encourage the body’s tissues against advanced glycation end products and oxidative stress.

Benfotiamine is more bioavailable than water-soluble thiamine. It can also easily penetrate the inside of cells.

Benfotiamine with Thiamine Benefits:

  • Supports healthy blood sugar metabolism
  • Promotes optimal thiamine levels important for supporting cardiovascular health
  • Helps protect against advanced glycation end products
  • Provides support against oxidative stress

Suggested Use:

Take one (1) capsule four times daily, or as recommended by a healthcare practitioner.

Serving Size: 1 vegetarian capsule

Amount Per Serving

Thiamine … 25 mg

(vitamin B1) (as thiamine HCl)

Benfotiamine … 100 mg

Mega Benfotiamine 250mg by Life Extension

Mega Benfotiamine is formulated with 250 mg of benfotiamine and 10 mg of thiamine (vitamin B1) to support healthy blood sugar metabolism. It also helps protect your body against oxidative stress and glycation, a biochemical reaction that can contribute to a variety of age-related factors.

Benfotiamine can modulate glucose metabolism and support already-healthy blood glucose levels.

Mega Benfotiamine Benefits:

  • Helps support healthy blood sugar metabolism
  • Supports already-healthy blood glucose levels
  • Offers protection against advanced glycation end products (AGEs) & oxidative stress

Suggested Use: Take one (1) capsule one to four times daily, or as recommended by a healthcare practitioner.

Amount Per 1 vegetarian capsule Serving
Thiamine … 10 mg (vitamin B1) (as thiamine HCl)
Benfotiamine … 250 mg

Food First!

Although this article discusses supplements in detail, don’t forget that we are absolutely committed to the “Food First” approach to nutrition. When it comes to your health, the totality of your eating habits far surpasses the impact of individual nutrients or any single supplement you consume. Even though this article doesn’t delve into the broader picture of your overall diet, it’s crucial to keep this element at the forefront of our minds. Your food needs to provide all the vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytochemicals to nourish your body systems down to the cellular level.

Food choices, rather than supplements, are the most critical factors for a healthy gut microbiome. These trillions of tiny inhabitants in your gut affect your brain waves; they orchestrate your immune system. They possess the power to create molecules that can switch genes on or off and are even capable of synthesizing neurotransmitters. Opting for organic foods and steering clear of plastic packaging (including those labeled BPA-free) is a smart move to limit toxin exposure. The sum of all these parts leads to a powerful conclusion: the ultimate key to your health lies in the quality and balance of the food you consume. Supplements are secondary.

To Sum It Up

Benfotiamine, a vitamin B1 derivative, has proven its worth in the wellness domain, offering numerous health benefits. Whether you’re interested in managing nerve health or blood sugar levels, it’s a worthy addition to your health regimen. When you’re ready to make the leap, remember that the convenience and variety offered online make it a great resource. Research carefully, choose wisely, and buy Benfotiamine online to take the first step on your journey to better health.


This Article is Not a Substitute for Medical Advice

Dietary supplements are not designed to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The Supplement Sciences website seeks to provide comprehensive access to the most relevant supplement information along with convenient online ordering. We do not provide medical advice and cannot guarantee that every product suggested is completely without risk. Since each person is unique in their health history and medication use, it is important to discuss supplements with your personal physician. Specifically, pregnant women and individuals being treated for cancer or liver or kidney problems must consult their physician about every nutritional supplement they plan to take. People taking medications for the treatment of HIV or with a history of organ transplant must not take supplements without consulting with their physician.


About the Author

Stephanie Figon, MS, RDN, LD

Creator of Supplement Sciences and NutriScape.NET. As a dietitian since 1992, Steph has had experiences in consulting, 15 years in clinical, and has operated a private practice nutrition counseling office for since 2011. Log in to comment and save this article on your board or send your comments to reviews@supplement-sciences.com

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