Download PDF by Kenneth J. Carpenter: Beriberi, White Rice, and Vitamin B: A Disease, a Cause, and

By Kenneth J. Carpenter

ISBN-10: 0520220536

ISBN-13: 9780520220539

During this entire account of the heritage and remedy of beriberi, Kenneth wood worker lines the many years of clinical and chemical examine that solved the puzzle posed via this mysterious sickness. attributable to the inability of a minute volume of the chemical thiamin, or nutrition B1 within the vitamin, beriberi is characterised by means of weak point and lack of feeling within the toes and legs, then swelling from fluid retention, and at last center failure. Western medical professionals operating in Asia after 1870 observed it because the significant affliction in local militia and prisons. It was once at the start attributed to miasms (poisonous vapors from damp soil) or to bacterial infections. In Java, chickens fed accidentally on white rice misplaced using their legs. On brown rice, the place the grain nonetheless contained its bran and germ, they remained fit. experiences in Javanese prisons then confirmed beriberi additionally happening the place white (rather than brown) rice used to be the staple meals. Birds have been used to assay the efficiency of fractions extracted from rice bran and, after two decades, hugely energetic crystals have been bought. In one other 10 years their constitution was resolute and "thiamin" was once synthesized. Beriberi is a narrative of contested wisdom and erratic clinical pathways. It bargains a desirable chronicle of the improvement of medical idea, a background that encompasses public healthiness, technological know-how, vitamin, alternate, increasing empires, battle, and technology.From the preface:This is a scientific detective tale: starting with the research of a disorder that has killed or crippled a minimum of 1000000 humans, after which following up clues that ranged a lot wider. One consequence was once the creation of an artificial chemical that we now, the majority of us, devour in small amounts every day in our meals. The detectives had numerous professions and spoke varied languages. Their paintings ranged from learning the future health of employees in a primitive jungle to the painstaking dissection of person grains of rice below a microscope. The built-in tale in their struggles and successes, culled from outdated volumes in scattered libraries, varieties the topic of this booklet.

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Extra info for Beriberi, White Rice, and Vitamin B: A Disease, a Cause, and a Cure

Sample text

Languid and depraved. . The speech is sometimes so much obstructed that the patient can scarcely pronounce a syllable articulately. . Any violent exercise incurs the danger of death. . ”3 He added that he had been told that the name beriberi came from a local word meaning sheep because the sufferers had a tottering, sheeplike gait. ”5 BERIBERI IN SRI LANKA For the next two hundred years there were scattered reports of the disease occurring both on land in European possessions in Asia and also among native crew members in the navies of the colonial powers.

45 A DISEASE IN CHICKENS FED HOSPITAL RICE Surely, at this point most investigators would have given up the use of chickens, whose behavior seemed so uncontrollable, and returned to a mammalian model such as the rabbits used by Pekelharing. But Eijkman felt that the disease in the chickens, which he called “polyneuritis,” was sufficiently similar to beriberi to warrant a further effort. ” The chickens had been fed a different diet during the five months in which the disease had been developing.

Takaki was equally correct in pointing to the low nitrogen content of rice as compared with other cereals, including barley. It is notable that the analytical tables from this period do not state what degree of processing the samples had received before being analyzed. Nor did either Takaki or Van Leent refer to this aspect. But the following chapter will describe how it was to become of major importance in the next period of research. Later, in chapter 8, I will consider the different portions of a rice grain in more detail.

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Beriberi, White Rice, and Vitamin B: A Disease, a Cause, and a Cure by Kenneth J. Carpenter


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