BiotiQuest® Gut Health & Probiotics Blog with Martha Carlin

How much better can you "B"

Martha Carlin | Sep 23, 2021 | 4 minutes read

How much better can you “B”?

I have done a lot of reading and researching over the years on nutrition and supplements in my pursuit of helping my husband with his Parkinson’s. Nutrient deficiency can be an underlying causal factor in many chronic health issues. Most recently, I was contacted by several people with Parkinson’s regarding vitamin B-1, thiamine, deficiency. I started to do some research. Back in the early 1900’s before foods were fortified with vitamins, thiamine deficiency was known as Beri-Beri. Today most people don’t give much thought to nutrient deficiency. However, it could be a more significant issue now because our soils are so depleted from our monocrop, large scale, depletive agricultural practices.

Symptoms of thiamine (B1) deficiency sound a lot like some of the symptoms of Parkinson’s and other neurological diseases:

  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Anxiety
  • Loss of appetite
  • Poor memory
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Changes in heart rate
  • Shortness of breath
  • Reduced reflexes
  • Tingling
  • Muscle weakness

After doing some more research I found out that thiamine deficiency is associated with other illnesses like:

  • Hypothyroid
  • Parkinson’s
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • ALS
  • Megaloblastic anemia

Just to name a few. If you are suffering from any of the above symptoms you might want to think about adding foods that are high in thiamine (B1) to your diet and considering additional supplementation. Foods that are high in thiamine include beef liver, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, macadamia nuts, brown rice and nutritional yeast to name a few.


You might consider adding a B-Complex too as this isn’t the only B that is important to your health. Many people don’t realize that many of the B-Vitamins are made by gut bacteria. B vitamins are very important to immunity and homeostasis in the gut. If you want to read more about the science of B vitamins in the gut from food and bacteria, you can read more here.

Remember it’s always good to B at your Best!


With gratitude,

Martha Carlin photo Martha Carlin, is a “Citizen Scientist”, systems thinker, wife of Parkinson’s warrior, John Carlin, and founder of The BioCollective , a microbiome company expanding the reach of science and BiotiQuest, the first of it’s kind probiotic line. Since John’s diagnosis in 2002, Martha began learning the science of agriculture, nutrition, environment, infectious disease, Parkinson’s pathology and much more. In 2014, when the first research was published showing a connection between the gut bacteria and the two phenotypes of Parkinson’s, Martha quit her former career as a business turnaround expert and founded The BioCollective to accelerate the discovery of the impact of gut health on all human disease. Martha was a speaker at the White House 2016 Microbiome Initiative launch, challenging the scientific community to “think in a broader context”. Her systems thinking background and experience has led to collaborations across the scientific spectrum from neuroscience to engineering to infectious disease. She is a respected out of the box problem solver in the microbiome field and brings a unique perspective to helping others understand the connections from the soil to the food to our guts and our brains.

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