Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)- Benefits, Deficiency Symptoms And Food Sources

Vitamin B6

Other names :: Pyridoxine, pyridoxine HCL, niacinamide, pyridoxal phosphate

Vitamin B6 otherwise known as pyridoxine, performs as a coenzyme to carry out metabolic processes that affect the body’s use of protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Vitamin B6 is essential for nerve impulse transmission within the brain and is necessary for antibody production.

Actions and benefits of vitamin B6

  • Helps metabolize fats and carbohydrates.
  • Proper DNA and RNA action, nervous system, brain.
  • Functions as a tranquilizer.
  • It plays an important part in metabolizing unsaturated fatty acids to vitamin E Helps keep blood healthy, promotes red cell formation and supports normal hemoglobin level.
  • Essential to cell respiration.
  • Reduction of PMS symptoms.
  • Inflammation of arthritis and carpal-tunnel syndrome may be reduced.

Recommended dosage of vitamin B6

  • Men – 1.3 mg
  • Women – 1.3 mg
  • Pregnancy – 1.9 mg
  • Lactation – 2.0 mg

Signs of Overdose:

  • Sustained periods of large doses may cause irreversible nerve damage.
  • The excess of vitamin B6 may also lead to kidney stone formation.

Deficiency symptoms of Vitamin B6

  • Irritability.
  • Kidney stones.
  • Anemia.
  • Hyperactivity.
  • Tongue discoloration.
  • Inability to sleep or insomnia.

When more may be required

Should  you be taking antidepressants, contraceptive pills or be on hormone replacement therapy you may need more of this vitamin. As this vitamin is readily lost in the urine, it must be taken regularly to ensure an adequate amount in the body.

Best food sources of vitamin B6

Green leafy vegetables, bananas, avocados, wheat germ, walnuts, blacks trap, molasses, cantaloupe, cabbage, green peppers, carrots, brown rice, honey, prunes, hazelnuts (filberts), potatoes, soybeans, sunflower seeds.

How to use vitamin B6

Available as:

Liquid: the best form due to its high bioavailability and fast absorption. Always choose liquid as your first choice when supplementing your diet.

Tablets: available


Heat and/or moisture may alter the vitamin. Refrigeration is recommended.

Useful References

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