Vitamin B1 Benfotiamine

History of Ingredient

Benfotiamine is a synthetic derivative of thiamine, more commonly known as Vitamin B1. Its roots trace back to Japan, where it was initially developed in the late 1950s as an anti-ulcer drug. Subsequently, the scientific community discovered its higher bioavailability compared to water-soluble thiamine, making it preferable in certain clinical applications.

Over time, it transitioned from its initial medical applications to a broader role in supplement manufacturing. Today, its primary usage is for mitigating complications associated with diabetes and other nerve-related conditions.

Differences Between Vitamin B1 Benfotiamine and Vitamin B1 Thiamine

While both Benfotiamine and Thiamine fall under the category of Vitamin B1, there are substantial differences in their structure, bioavailability, and applications. Thiamine is a water-soluble compound, whereas benfotiamine is lipid-soluble due to its modified molecular structure. This crucial distinction enables benfotiamine to be more readily absorbed through the intestinal wall, thereby resulting in higher bioavailability. The lipid-soluble nature of benfotiamine also allows for more efficient storage within the body.

Moreover, benfotiamine exhibits targeted benefits, particularly in diabetic neuropathy and other nerve-related conditions. In contrast, thiamine’s benefits are more general, contributing to the metabolism of carbohydrates and functioning of the nervous system. Due to its increased absorption rates, benfotiamine is often favoured in clinical settings for conditions requiring higher thiamine levels.


Scientific Makeup

Benfotiamine is a lipid-soluble derivative of thiamine. Its molecular structure comprises a S-acyl substitution on the thiazole ring, significantly enhancing its bioavailability compared to standard water-soluble thiamine.

The S-acyl group allows for easier intestinal absorption and greater storage capacities, thus making it a more effective means of thiamine delivery. These molecular characteristics give benfotiamine a unique place among B-complex vitamins.


Benefits of Ingredient

The most renowned benefits of benfotiamine centre around its neuroprotective qualities, especially in addressing complications arising from diabetes. It aids in the regulation of blood sugar levels and assists in the management of peripheral neuropathy. Studies such as this one from PubMed support its efficacy in diabetic care.

Moreover, it has been shown to improve the general functioning of the nervous system and may assist in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. Other applications include its role in mitochondrial function, which may result in an overall energy boost. Furthermore, it works well in combination with other ingredients such as Magnesium, Alpha Lipoic Acid, and Coenzyme Q10 to enhance its therapeutic effects.


Forms of Consumption

Benfotiamine is available in various forms, catering to different consumer preferences and physiological requirements. The most common form is the oral capsule, but it is also available in tablet form, both of which offer convenience and ease of consumption.

It’s worth noting that benfotiamine, being lipid-soluble, is best absorbed when taken with a meal containing fats. When it comes to powders, benfotiamine is not often found in isolation but is usually part of a multi-ingredient blend designed for specific health outcomes, such as diabetes management or nerve health. It is also available as an injectable solution in specific clinical settings.


Safety + Dosages

Benfotiamine is generally considered safe when taken in appropriate dosages, although excessive intake could lead to imbalance with other B vitamins. The typical dosage range is between 150 to 450 mg per day for adults.

It is advisable to consult healthcare professionals for personalised dosage recommendations, particularly when dealing with diabetes or nerve-related conditions.

Use and Legality in the UK, EU, US, and Globally

In the United Kingdom, benfotiamine is legally available over-the-counter as a dietary supplement. The European Union similarly regulates it as a food supplement, making it accessible to consumers across member states. The United States categorises benfotiamine as a dietary supplement, subject to the guidelines of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Internationally, benfotiamine’s use aligns with its categorisation as a dietary supplement. However, regulations can vary between countries, especially those with stringent drug control policies. It is advisable to consult local laws when travelling with the supplement.

For further information on how to incorporate benfotiamine or other vital ingredients into your supplement line, contact us today.