The Top Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) Rich Foods + Recipes
Why is Vitamin B6 important? How much do you need each day? What do deficiencies look like? Which foods and recipes contain it?
What is Vitamin B6?
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) is one of the most active of all the B vitamins. It offers multiple benefits and comes in different forms. These include pyridoxine (PN), pyridoxal (PL), pyridoxal phosphate (P-5-P) and 4-pyridoxic acid (4PA).
Why is Vitamin B6 important and what does it do in the body?
Like most B vitamins, pyridoxine is involved in many crucial metabolic functions.These include the release of fuel from the liver in the form of glycogen, which supplies our muscles with energy. It is also involved in the formation of protein, the structural component of the body, as well as chemical neurotransmitters including dopamine, serotonin, nor-epinephrine and melatonin. It helps make nucleic acids which are essential for DNA and RNA formation. It also makes red blood cells and prostaglandins which help control inflammation.
Vitamin B6 supports the immune system by antibody production which protects us from infection. It plays a role in maintaining hormonal balance as well as controlling obesity. B6 helps balance sodium and potassium, thus supporting the regulation of body fluids and maintaining the correct pH balance in the blood system. When combined with magnesium, B6 helps to reduce oxalic acid salts and reduce the symptoms of gout and kidney stones. It has also been used to prevent the development of eclampsia (toxaemia) in pregnancy and reduce nausea and morning sickness. It also controls dandruff and dries oily skin – especially important in controlling acne. Elevated homocysteine and methylation disorders have been associated with many disorders including autism, heart disease and osteoporosis. Since this is so, supporting the methylation cycle with B6, folinic acid (MTHF is the best available form) and B12, plus magnesium may be highly important.
What amount of Vitamin B6 do you need each day?
Vitamin B6 is found in multivitamins and B complex vitamins. It is also sold individually as pyridoxine. The most bio-available source is pyridoxal phosphate (P-5-P).
The DRI (Daily Recommended Intake) /RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of dietary vitamin B6 are listed below:
- Infants 0 - 6 months: 0.1 mg (adequate intake)
- Infants 7 months - 1 year: 0.3 mg (adequate intake)
- Children 1 - 3 years: 0.5 mg (RDA)
- Children 4 - 8 years: 0.6 mg (RDA)
- Children 9 - 13 years: 1 mg (RDA)
- Boys 14 - 18 years: 1.3 mg (RDA)
- Girls 14 - 18 years: 1.2 mg (RDA)
- 19 - 50 years: 1.3 mg (RDA)
- Men 51 years and older: 1.7 mg (RDA)
- Women 51 years and older: 1.5 mg (RDA)
- Pregnant women: 1.9 mg (RDA)
- Breastfeeding women: 2.0 mg (RDA)
Recommended daily Allowance 2mg/Day
Optimal Daily Allowance 75mg/Day
What are possible Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) deficiency conditions and symptoms?
Carpal Tunnel syndrome
Convulsions and/or seizures
Cracking of the lips and/or tongue
Edema (Water Retention)
Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
Inability to tan
Loss of Appetite
Numbness of hands and feet
Poor sleep and infrequent dream recall
Pre Menstrual Syndrome (PMS)
Cheilosis – cracks or splits at the corner of the mouth
Glossitis – sore and inflamed tongue
Sensitivity to Sun
What are possible Vitamin B6 excess symptoms?
Vitamin B6 is one of the few water-soluble B vitamins with any toxicity. This may occur if it is taken in moderate or high doses (exceeding 100mg) for extended periods.
Doses should be divided over the course of the day with no more than 50mg at any one dosage.
Neuropathy may develop with prolonged high-dose use.
Avoid supplementation during L-Dopamine treatment
What steals Vitamin B6 from the body?
There are many things that steal B6 from the body:
Penicillamine-anti rheumatic and lead poisoning therapeutic
Maleichydrazide – herbicide
Succinic acid-2, 2-dimethylhydrazide - fruit ripening agent
Tartrazine (FD&C yellow No.5- the food color and the mood stabilizer)
Valproicacid – an anti epileptic drug
Diuretics: Furosemide(lasix), Bumetamide (Bumex), Torsemide (Demadex) and Ethacrynic acid (Edecrin)
Broad spectrum antibiotics: Tetracycline, (Demeclocycline, Doxycycline and Methacycline), Amoxicillin/Clavulanic Acid (Augmentin), Vancomycin will kill off the colonies of beneficial bacteria in the gut that help make B6 vitamins.
What foods contain the highest amounts of Vitamin B6?
Top 10 Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) rich foods are:
1. Rice bran 4.07mg/100g
Recipe: Rice Bran Muffins
2. Dried chili powder 3.67mg/100g
Recipe: Carnitas Tacos
3. Pistachios 1.7mg/100g
Recipe: Pistachio Baked Chicken Tenders
4. Raw garlic 1.235mg/100g
Recipe: Four Ways to Consume Raw Garlic
5. Liver 1.04mg/100g
6. Salmon 1.04mg/100g
7. Sunflower seeds 0.81mg/100g
Recipe: Cinnamon Spice Baked N'Oatmeal
Recipe: Rosemary Raisin Crackers
8. Pork tenderloin (lean)0.74mg/100g
9. Hazelnuts 0.62mg/100g
Recipe: Homemade Nutella
10. Cod .046mg/100g
This article was written by Jonathan Tommey, CCN and Bella Grace, NTP. This article is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Content should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment.
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