Vitamin B6 or pyridoxine
is one of the water-soluble B-complex vitamins. Its main functions in the body are to help release energy from food (metabolism), aid in the proper functioning of more than sixty enzymes, promote a healthy immune system, help in cell multiplication, and assist in the manufacture of genetic material called nucleic acid. Large concentrations of pyridoxine are found in the brain, which has led to its use in treating depression. Vitamin B6 helps maintain brain function; aids in the formation of red blood cells; is essential to protein metabolism and absorption; and helps with the synthesis of antibodies in the immune system.
Good Food Sources:
Meats, fish, nuts, legumes, bananas, brown rice, avocados, whole grains, lentils, corn, eggs, fortified cereals, spinach, potatoes, soybeans, liver, kidney, poultry, oatmeal, and prunes.
Signs of Deficiency:
Signs of pyridoxine deficiency usually occur with other deficiencies in the B complex; symptoms include weakness, inflamed tongue and mouth, sleeplessness, depression, confusion, inflammation of the mucous membranes in the mouth, and nerve problems in the feet and hands.
Uses of Pyridoxine:
Pyridoxine is used to treat acne, allergies and asthma, anemia, carpal tunnel syndrome, diabetes, fibrocystic breast disease, insomnia, nausea , Parkinson's disease, premenstrual syndrome, and prostate enlargement