Vitamin B1 for Parkinson’s disease wasn’t the miracle we’d hoped for

An update on my husband, 8 months after starting the therapy

Jamie Askari avatar

by Jamie Askari |

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Note: This column describes the author’s own experiences with vitamin B1. Not everyone will have the same response to treatment. Consult your doctor before starting or stopping a therapy.

Last fall, at my support group for Parkinson’s caregivers, I learned about vitamin B1, or high-dose thiamine, for the management of Parkinson’s disease symptoms. According to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, “A few studies have found an association between low thiamine levels and Parkinson’s disease, though studies had limitations.”

Some of my fellow caregivers had noted positive results from adding B1 therapy to their spouses’ regimens. I was very excited at the prospect of the therapy also helping my husband, Arman. When I found the B1 Parkinson’s website, I was amazed at the quotes I read. It sounded like B1 was the miracle we’d been waiting for.

Our next step was to consult Arman’s movement disorder specialist. Although he hadn’t heard about the therapy, he was open to Arman trying it.

Once we received the physician’s seal of approval, Arman got started. For his dosing, he followed suggestions from the book “Parkinson’s and the B1 Therapy” by Daphne Bryan, PhD.

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How it’s going

It’s now been about eight months since Arman started taking vitamin B1 for his early-onset Parkinson’s disease, but it’s tough to say if there’s been any real improvement.

Unfortunately, the miracles I was hoping for have not happened. I suppose my mental images of him standing up straight, moving effortlessly, and never falling again weren’t very realistic. I keep rereading quotes from others who have had life-changing experiences with B1, and I can’t help but wonder why that didn’t happen for us.

Although we haven’t seen a significant decrease in Arman’s symptoms, he has been able to decrease the dosage of some of his Parkinson’s medications. I will take this as a small win for team Askari in our boxing match against the disease.

As a result, even though B1 therapy hasn’t been an overwhelming success or provided him a magical result, Arman will continue to add the vitamin to his handful of morning pills. So far, he hasn’t noticed any downsides of taking it.

We will continue to stay educated and informed on any new vitamins, supplements, medications, or procedures that may be the miracle we’ve been waiting for. A cure or effective treatment option for Parkinson’s disease may not be found today, tomorrow, or next week, but we hold on to the hope that it will be found someday.


Note: Parkinson’s News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Parkinson’s News Today or its parent company, Bionews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Parkinson’s disease.

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