Do you often feel a tingling sensation or loss of feeling in your feet and hands? Or do you experience mental confusion, paralysis, difficulty in speaking, involuntary movement of the eye, or vomiting? Then you might be suffering from beriberi or the deficiency in Vitamin B1. This condition is not a simple condition that you can just ignore if you want to –this can be a serious illness, which needs urgent treatment. The good thing if you don’t want to go to the doctor is to take the different home remedies for beriberi. Not just that these are present in your home, they’re also effective.
What is Beriberi?
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This is a condition wherein the cause is the deficiency in vitamin B1 or what they popularly call, thiamine. The disease actually has two types, the dry beriberi, and the wet beriberi. Dry beriberi is the type of the condition wherein, it causes damage to the nerves and it may lead to reduced muscle strength and may eventually result in muscle paralysis. On the other hand, the wet beriberi is the beriberi that may have an effect on the heart and the circulatory system. In some rare cases, this type of beriberi may lead to heart failure. Furthermore, beriberi can be life frightening if left untreated.
Beriberi is a condition that is often characterized by various symptoms that are put on a display by those people who are having a deficiency in the essential vitamin, vitamin B1. Hence, it usually affects those individuals that are malnourished, specifically, those who are in the underdeveloped countries.
If you are consuming foods that are rich in thiamin or vitamin B1, there is a low chance of developing the illness. Nowadays, beriberi mostly occurs to some people that have alcohol disorder. Moreover, the disease can be seen mostly in people who have AIDS, and women who are experiencing extreme vomiting and nausea in their pregnancy.
What Causes Beriberi?
Those mothers that are breastfeeding and are lacking with thiamine has a high tendency to pass on the deficiency to their baby. Furthermore, the usage of a heavy dose of diuretics and dialysis may also increase the possibility of the illness. Based on a certain handbook, aside from the nutrient-deficient food, there are few major causes of beriberi in some developed countries. Some other factors that may result in beriberi are a lengthy difficulty during pregnancy, chronic alcoholism, poor absorption of nutrients, and hypothyroidism.
Most of the physiological processes are being affected by this condition and may be detected at an early stage. If an adequate diet and proper treatment are taken into account in a timelier manner, the complexities, which appear because of the involvement of sensitive circulatory and nervous system may be recovered.
Symptoms of Beriberi
The symptoms of the illness may actually vary from its type.
Wet beriberi symptoms:
- Swollen lower legs
- Rapid beating of heart
- Short of breath upon waking up
- Shortness of breathing during physical activities
Dry beriberi symptoms:
- Involuntary movement of the eyes
- Difficulty in speaking
- Mental confusion
- Tingling sensation or loss of feeling in the hands and feet
- Reduced muscle function
Treatments and Home Remedies for Beriberi
Here are some of the best treatments and home remedies for beriberi:
Healthy diet. A proper and well-balanced diet is important in providing the body the vitamin B1 that it needs. Thus, getting rid of the illness.
Milk. Since milk is a good source of vitamins and minerals, it is essential to consume, especially to those who suffer from beriberi.
Legumes. Most of the nuts, seeds, and legumes are rich in thiamine, especially in their outer layer. You can use this frequently.
Rice Bran. This is one of the best home remedies for beriberi. This is already present in about hundreds of years now. In this remedy, the rice is being boiled in an excess water, which contains the rice extract that is drained and collected in a vessel. This will then be drunk by patients. This is beneficial since it is rich in vitamin B1.
Brown rice. This type of rice has high levels of thiamine, thus it is beneficial in getting rid of beriberi. A diet that incorporates this rice is good for every patient suffering from the illness.
Medical treatments. For the medical treatment of the thiamine deficiency, doctors usually prescribe thiamine pills or shots. Furthermore, the intake of the thiamine pills proves to give positive effects in giving relief to the patient in just a small amount of time.
Preventive Measures for Beriberi
Here are two things that you can do to prevent the illness:
- Avoid eating fish: you must avoid eating raw tissues of animals especially those in fishes, shrimps, mussels, clams, and shellfish. These contain thiaminase, which reduces the thiamin in the body.
- Avoid drinking water after a meal: since the vitamin B1 is soluble in water, it is not good to drink water upon eating meals. It is better to let the food get digested first before drinking.