Vitamin B6 Ingredient Overview
There are a total of eight B vitamins, and knowing every one of them takes some effort, especially if you’re trying to stay healthy and ensure that you’re taking the right ones. Keep reading to see “what does vitamin B6 do?” as well as the most common vitamin B6 benefits.
What is Vitamin B6?
Every one of the B vitamins are essential nutrients, meaning that our body cannot produce them on its own. Like the name suggests, vitamin B6 is made up of a group of six compounds known as vitamers that all have a very similar chemical form. In its active form, vitamin B6 is pyridoxal 5’-phosphate.
This is a coenzyme that is used in a range of different reactions in the human body, ranging from amino acid production to lipid and glucose metabolism. Animals require vitamin B6 because they don’t perform photosynthesis like plants do, as that’s their source of this enzyme.
While intestinal bacteria produce and absorb some vitamin B6, it isn’t enough to sustain their needs, so they need to get it from outside sources. Unlike some other vitamins, it’s also possible to consume too much vitamin B6, so most regulatory agencies set an upper limit for vitamin B6 consumption at between 25 and 100 mg per day.
What is Vitamin B6 Good For?
Vitamin B6 Pregnancy
Vitamin B6 for morning sickness is considered one of the most effective measures that you can use to curb the symptoms, but doctors warn that it may not be able to tackle the underlying causes. This is because vitamin B6 is able to combat nausea but not necessarily the vomiting that also comes with morning sickness.
The University of Michigan’s health department recommends taking vitamin B6 to halt these effects, and they state that studies have not shown any negative effects to the foetus when doing so. They also warn against using too much, as doses in excess of 100 mg per day can cause temporary nerve damage.
Vitamin B6 Dosage for Sleep
Anecdotal evidence also shows that vitamin B6 may be an excellent choice of vitamin if you’re having trouble getting to sleep. One of the more interesting findings of this study is that vitamin B6 can also improve the vividness of dreams as well as our ability to remember them. Some participants even mentioned that their dreams were in colour.
Along with the vividness of dreams, participants in the study who were not given vitamin B mentioned that the quality of their sleep did not match the test group. Most of them scored consistently lower on scales that determined the quality of their sleep and restfulness upon waking up.
Vitamin B6 Foods
Milk is one of the most accessible sources of vitamin B6, and one cup of it will contain about 5% of the vitamin B6 that you should have per day. Combining the milk with a fortified cereal will also allow you to double up on the amount of vitamin B6 that you’re getting in your diet.
Salmon is another excellent source of Vitamin B6, and it’s also packed with omega 3 fatty acids, giving you a double dose of good nutrients. In fact, salmon has one of the largest concentrations of vitamin B6 when compared to other foods, and it’s also a great source of protein that’s low in fat.
Magnesium Vitamin B6 Interaction
One of the most fascinating things that scientists have discovered about vitamin B6 is that it’s able to help out people who are dealing with autism when it's combined with magnesium. However, the trials that have been conducted have typically used relatively large doses of each nutrient.
When combining the two, they are able to tackle the most notable symptoms of autism. It does by reducing abnormalities in biochemicals that are present in the systems of autism patients. A study is currently underway to determine the validity of these findings, though the results will take some time to process so that the scientists can come to a conclusion.
How Much Vitamin B6 per Day?
The amount of vitamin B6 that you should take each day depends on your age, gender, and a few other biological factors. In the case of adults who are 50 years old and younger, the daily recommended dose is about 1.3 milligrams, but this increases to 1.5 milligrams for women after 50 and 1.7 milligrams for men after 50.
How Long Does Vitamin B6 Take to Work?
Since vitamin B6 is water soluble, you’ll be able to notice its effects far quicker than you would be able to with some other nutrients. In most cases, you should be able to see a difference within a week of taking consistent vitamin B6 supplements.