What are the causes of beriberi?


Causes of beriberi include deficiency of thiamine or vitamin B1 in daily diet. The function of this vitamin is to convert all forms of carbohydrates into energy that helps in nervous function, muscle and heart function. Fresh foods as well as unrefined cereals contain vitamin B1.Beriberi is a common disease of those patients who eat polished rice. Polished rice does not contain enough thiamine because of removal of thiamine bearing husk. Beriberi is a disease of Asian countries as they rely on white rice. Beriberi causes neuropathy.  Genetic beriberi is passed through families. People suffering from genetic beriberi are unable to absorb thiamine.

Breast feeding infants can also suffer from beriberi if mother is lacking thiamine in her body. Dialysis also causes beriberi because of taking high diuretic doses. Diagnosis of beriberi is sometimes missed as beriberi is not considered in non-alcoholics by many doctors. Beriberi causes also include gastric surgeries.


Filed Under: Digestion and Nutrition DisordersDiseases

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