Vitamin B6 Benefits From Several Perspectives
Vitamin B6 benefits are well known and well documented. We need each of the 13 vitamins to remain fit and healthy, to survive for that matter, so it can be said that one vitamin is no more important than the other. An excess of vitamin B6, as beneficial as the vitamin is known to be, cannot make up for a deficiency in one of the other vitamins. Vitamin B6 also goes under the name pyridoxine.
Our Diet Is Usually Sufficient - Furthermore, in a healthy diet, one that will normally provide the B vitamins we need in sufficient amounts, we will get the amount of vitamin B6 we require. The risk of incurring a vitamin B6 deficiency, aside from starving ourselves or eating only junk food, lies in the fact that this vitamin, being water soluble and rapidly metabolized in our body, constantly needs to be replenished. In the normal course of events this happens without our thinking about it. Our diet takes care of it, or a daily multiple vitamin tablet takes care of it. So why be concerned at all with the benefits of vitamin B6?
While vitamin B6 may not be more important than any other vitamin, it lays a much larger role than any of the other vitamins, and in that sense provides multiple benefits, and any deficiency can result in multiple problems. A vitamin D deficiency can result in rickets, the softening of the bones. A vitamin B6 deficiency can result in a laundry list of problems. We need both, but the benefits of vitamin B6 cannot be underestimated. So what are they?
Many Vitamin B6 Benefits - Vitamin B6 is critical in the formation, processing and metabolizing of certain amino acids, which in turn prevent or forestall incidents of heart disease. The cardiovascular system also benefits from vitamin B6 due to its role in helping to prevent the formation of fatty plaque in the arteries. Several neurological chemicals including histamines, serotonin, dopamine and adrenaline require vitamin B6 for their formation. A deficiency of these chemicals is a known cause of stress, depression, and other neurological ailments. Vitamin B6, pyridoxine, plays an essential role in converting carbohydrates, protein, and fat into energy. The positive effect of iron in the body as a provider of energy could not occur if it was not for vitamin B6. Scores of different enzymes and hormones our body needs would not exist without the presence of vitamin B6.
Vitamin B6 Deficiencies - Vitamin B6 benefits can be appreciated by looking at problems which may arise given a deficiency in the vitamin. General anemia is probably the most common sign of a vitamin B6 deficiency, though dry or cracked skin or lips are also symptoms. Depression, apathy, and other neurological disorders often have their roots in this deficiency as do insomnia, and in extreme cases, a nervous breakdown. A vitamin B6 deficiency is not always the primary cause, but can definitely be a contributing factor behind any of these symptoms.
When Too Much OF A Good Thing Is Bad - Vitamin B6 benefits are rather substantial, and the symptoms of a deficiency can be rather scary. One might be tempted to take vitamin B6 supplements to maximize the benefits and eliminate any chance of a deficiency. Since vitamin B6 is water soluble, and is metabolized quickly, the rationale is, since we don't retain it for long, we should make certain we always have enough, or more than enough. The problem is, of all the members of the vitamin B complex, vitamin B6 is the one which, when taken in excess, can be toxic, with damage to nerve endings a distinct and potentially irreversible possibility. The message is to be careful about using supplements, beyond a daily multiple vitamin, unless you know how much you are taking. We need about 2 milligrams a day. 1,000 milligrams, taken in the course of a day, could cause irreversible damage.