Vitamin B-6

Pyridoxine

Functions

  • used in more than 100 reactions in body especially those involved with protein metabolism
    • essential for metabolism of tryptophan
    • needed for utilization of certain other amino acids
  • aids in formation of red blood cell (hemoglobin) and certain white blood cells
  • aids in nervous system function, or development of neurotransmitters
  • health of skin

Deficiency

  • anemia and weakness
  • dermatitis around eyes and mouth
  • sore tongue
  • headaches
  • PMS
  • weakened immunity
  • Digestive
    • nausea and vomiting
    • abdominal pain
  • Neurological
    • seizures
    • neuritis
  • Psychological
    • anorexia
    • nervousness
    • depression
    • irritability
    • Insomnia

Characteristics

  • soluble in water and alcohol
  • rapidly inactivated in presence of heat, sunlight, or air

Good Sources

Vitamin B-6

Natural

  • meat, fish
  • whole grains
  • beans
  • nuts
  • banana
  • avocados
Food Quantity mg
Oat bran muffin 1 medium 0.22
Lima beans, cooked 1 cup 0.14
Tuna, cooked 3 oz 0.45
Banana 1 medium 0.68

Artificial

  • wheat germ
  • blackstrap molasses
  • brewer's yeast

Recommended Daily Allowances (RDA)

  • Males (11 yrs. and older)
    • 1.3 mg
    • 1.8-2.2 mg
  • Females (11 yrs. and older)
    • 1.3 mg
    • 1.8-2.2 mg
  • Pregnant females
    • 2.6 mg
  • Lactating females
    • 2.5 mg
  • Children
    • 0.9-1.6 mg
  • Infants
    • 0.3-0.6 mg
  • Varied values reflect different references

Tolerable Upper Intake Levels (UL)

  • Adults (19 to 50 yrs)
    • 100 mg
  • Generally considered nontoxic
  • Intakes above UL may lead to negative health consequences.
    • Large doses (2000-6000 mg daily) can cause numbness and other neurological disorders

Supplementation

  • 1.5-2 mg daily commonly recommended
  • Best taken with potassium, vitamin B complex, and vitamin C

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