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5 Signs and Symptoms of Vitamin B6 Deficiency

Vitamin b6 Deficiency

Did you know that around 13% of the population is believed to have a vitamin B6 deficiency? A lack of this important nutrient can lead to a wide range of health problems. If you’re not sure whether you’re getting enough B6, watch out for these five signs and symptoms of a deficiency.

The Role of Vitamin B6 in the Body

Vitamin B6 is a water-soluble vitamin that is very important in human health. It helps the body make and use serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine.

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that helps us feel happy and relaxed. Norepinephrine helps us think clearly and do well on exams. Dopamine helps control our motivation so we can get things done and stay motivated when we’re bored.

Moreover, vitamin B6 plays an important role in many metabolic pathways, including:

Hemoglobin Formation

Vitamin B6 is involved in the formation of hemoglobin, the substance that carries oxygen throughout the body. It also helps convert amino acids into proteins needed for growth and repair throughout the body.

Fat metabolism

Vitamin B6 is needed to make hormones that help regulate blood glucose levels, which promotes healthy insulin levels that prevent obesity and diabetes.

Carbohydrate metabolism

Vitamin B6 helps convert carbohydrates into glucose (sugar), which provides energy for tissues in your body to function properly.

Health Benefits Of Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 is a water-soluble vitamin that promotes the formation of red blood cells, helps your body use protein, and helps convert food into energy. It also plays an important role in maintaining proper nerve function and keeping your immune system healthy.

Here are some of the other benefits of this essential nutrient:

Supports Heart Health

Vitamin B6 has been shown to play a role in regulating homocysteine levels. High homocysteine levels have been linked to cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Helps Fight Cancer

Vitamin B6 has been shown to reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, as well as breast and prostate cancers. It also helps your body eliminate harmful chemicals that may play a role in cancer development.

Supports Digestive Health & Bowel Movements

Vitamin B6 helps your body digest proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. It also plays a role in producing hydrochloric acid (HCL), which is needed to break down food in your stomach before it enters your small intestine. This important nutrient may help prevent or relieve constipation.

Protects Against Alzheimer’s Disease & Dementia

Vitamin B6 has been shown to reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in some studies. It is thought that this nutrient may help preserve brain cells by preventing cell damage and death.

Reduces PMS Symptoms & Menstrual Cramps

Vitamin B6 may help reduce the symptoms of PMS and menstrual cramps. This nutrient is thought to relax tense muscles, relieve pain and improve mood. It is also believed to prevent premenstrual water retention by balancing hormones like estrogen and progesterone.

Boosts Immune System Functioning

Vitamin B6 is essential for healthy immune system functioning. It helps your body make antibodies and white blood cells. These types of cells fight off infections and harmful microorganisms in your body.

May Support Weight Loss Efforts

Vitamin B6 may support weight loss efforts by helping the body break down and use carbohydrates. It may also help regulate blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.

Vitamin b6 deficiency

What Is Vitamin B6 Deficiency?

Vitamin B6 deficiency is a condition that develops when you don’t get enough vitamin B6 in your diet. It’s usually caused by eating too few foods that contain this nutrient or by eating diets that have too little variety.

The Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) for adults is 1.3 mg per day for men, 1.7 mg per day for women, and 1.9 mg per day for pregnant women.

Moreover, certain conditions can lead to deficiencies in this vitamin:

Gastrointestinal disorders

People with inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, and Crohn’s disease may have low levels of pyridoxal phosphate (PLP), a coenzyme form of vitamin B6.

People who take certain medications

Long-term use of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) can interfere with the absorption of vitamin B6 from food or supplements.

People who drink alcohol heavily

Long-term use of alcohol can interfere with the absorption of vitamin B6 from food or supplements. In addition, alcohol can increase the body’s need for vitamin B6.

Health Problems Caused by Vitamin B6 Deficiency

Vitamin B6 deficiency is a serious health problem. It can cause a wide range of health issues, including:


Vitamin B6 plays an important role in the formation of red blood cells. Without enough vitamin B6, your body can’t produce enough red blood cells to sustain healthy oxygen levels in your body. Anemia may result from this condition.

Pregnancy complications

Vitamin B6 appears to help prevent premature birth and other pregnancy-related complications. It also helps to protect the fetus from neural tube defects such as spina bifida and anencephaly during early development.

Kidney disease

People who have kidney disease are at risk for developing vitamin B6 deficiency. This is because their kidneys cannot properly absorb some nutrients from their diet or eliminate them when the body no longer needs them. This can lead to serious health problems, such as seizures and kidney failure if left untreated.


People with low levels of vitamin B6 in their bodies are more likely to develop depression than those with normal levels. This is because the nutrient helps to regulate serotonin production, which plays a role in mood regulation.

Vitamin b6 deficiency

Signs and Symptoms of Vitamin B6 Deficiency

The symptoms of a vitamin B6 deficiency can vary from one person to another, but they generally include:

Tiredness and Lack of Energy

A vitamin B6 deficiency can make you feel unusually tired and sluggish. One big reason is that it helps your body produce hemoglobin—the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen throughout the body.

If your cells do not get enough oxygen because there are too few red blood cells in circulation, you may feel tired and weak. In addition, the vitamin helps your body metabolize carbohydrates and fat for energy. If you do not get enough B6 in your diet, your cells may not be able to use these nutrients as effectively. This can make it harder for you to think clearly or stay active throughout the day.

Acne and Breakout

If you have acne or breakouts, it could be because of a B vitamin deficiency. The B vitamins, including B6, are essential for your skin to function normally.

They help regulate oil production and control inflammation in the body. If you do not get enough of these nutrients, they may be unable to do their job properly. This can cause your skin to become oily and clog up your pores. It will also lead to breakouts and acne.

Moreover, when you are deficient in B6, it can take longer for your body to eliminate toxins from your system. This can cause an increase in oil production and inflammation that triggers acne outbreaks and other skin problems such as eczema or psoriasis.

Mood Changes

Vitamin B6 is an essential nutrient that helps control your mood, energy level, and sleep quality. It also helps your body maintain proper function of the nervous system and brain.

Vitamin B6 deficiency has been linked to anxiety disorders and depression. A study found that people with low levels of vitamin B6 had a higher risk of developing depression than those who had normal levels.

People with severe vitamin B6 deficiency were also more likely to have symptoms of depression, such as fatigue, weight loss, and sleep problems.

Tingling and Pain in Hands and Feet

One of the most common symptoms of vitamin B6 deficiency is tingling and numbness in the hands and feet. This can also be accompanied by burning sensations. It may also be worse when exposed to cold temperatures. The symptoms tend to worsen at night, which can make it difficult for people to sleep.


Seizures are one of the most common signs of vitamin B6 deficiency. The seizures caused by this deficiency are generally very mild and don’t last long. They’re usually characterized by a brief loss of consciousness. Seizures may also cause muscle cramps or jerking movements on one side of the body.

Severe deficiency can lead to serious neurological problems such as dementia or psychosis. See your doctor immediately if you’re experiencing seizures or any other vitamin B6 deficiency symptoms.

How to Prevent Vitamin B6 Deficiency

There are several ways to prevent vitamin B6 deficiency, including:

Eat a balanced diet

Vitamin B6 comes from many different foods, including meats, fish, and whole grains. A mixed diet can help you get enough of this nutrient every day.

However, it’s important to remember that the body cannot absorb vitamin B6 from food unless your digestive system works properly. If you have a stomach disorder or another condition that affects digestion, you may need more vitamin B6 than others.

Take a multivitamin every day

Multivitamins usually contain small amounts of vitamin B6 to help meet your daily needs. You should take only one multivitamin at a time because it may be harmful to you if you take more than one at once.

Avoid alcohol and coffee

Alcohol and coffee can interfere with the absorption of vitamin B6. Avoid caffeinated drinks for at least 4 hours before and after taking your multivitamin. If you drink alcohol regularly, consider taking a vitamin B6 supplement to compensate for your missing.

Get enough protein

Protein helps your body absorb vitamin B6. Eating more high-protein foods like fish, poultry, and lean meats can help you get the amount of this nutrient you need. If you’re lactose intolerant, try taking a lactose-free milk powder or drinking soy milk instead of regular milk.

Bottom Line

Vitamin B6 deficiency is more common than you might think and can take many forms. Since it’s largely preventable by simply eating a healthy diet, it’s one of those deficiencies we can avoid with little effort.

Of course, diet isn’t the only thing that matters when it comes to avoiding vitamin B6 deficiency. Be sure you’re getting enough of this key nutrient in your diet, and you’ll be on the right track to avoiding a number of potential unpleasant symptoms at the same time!

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