Vitamin B6 - Pyridoxine
Today I want to continue with the B-vitamin series. If you have not yet read the first post on vitamin B1, you can do so here. Next on the list is vitamin B6. It is my favourite B-vitamin because of its leading role in our physical and mental health. This vitamin is the basis for forming 50 different enzymes!
It is absolutely vital for the body to have adequate levels of B6 in order to make serotonin and other mood enhancing neurotransmitters. In fact, it has been shown to be the most important vitamin for amino acid metabolism and transportation. Pretty important job wouldn’t you say? 
We also need vitamin B6 to make haemoglobin, antibodies and hydrochloric acid, to breakdown macronutrients, decrease homocysteine levels, maintain healthy hormone levels, maintain normal nerve function and so much more!  
As with vitamin B1, sugar consumption and stress are the two major factors leading to B6 depletion. Without sufficient levels, you may experience physical ailments and/or mood disorders with some or all of the following symptoms:
  • Depression
  • Inner tension
  • Anxiety
  • Nervousness
  • Irritability
  • Inability to cope with stress
  • Mental confusion
  • Lack or dreams
  • PMS
  • Hormone imbalance
  • Insomnia or disturbed sleep
  • Cramping in hands and feet
  • Oedema
  • Knees that crack
  • Anaemia
In cases of extreme B6 depletion, serious anxiety, convulsions, and severe nervous exhaustion may occur. Please do not supplement without speaking to your doctor or health care provider. The RDA for adults is 2.2 mg, however, therapeutic doses may go as high as 100 – 1000 mg/day. 

While it is no secret that I am an advocate for supplementation where necessary, supplements are the short-term fix. That is, they are used to boost nutrient levels to the optimal range. In the long-term, however, we should attempt to get as many nutrients from food as possible. The major food sources of B6 include:

  • Liver — 3g provides 40% of the RDI
  • Salmon & tuna
  • Animal protein – chicken, pork, turkey & beef
  • Bananas
  • Spinach
  • Avocado
  • Pistachio nuts

1 Comment

  1. Michelle De Aguiar  11/09/2020 06:02 PM Central
    Hi Jen, I'm loving your info on all the 'B''s I'm wondering where you purchase your Salmon or tuna from please? I know the wild caught Salmon is hard to source. I miss eating tuna, but thought it was on the 'no' list as its a large fish and may carry heavy metals, so usually just eat sardines these days.

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