Vitamin B6 or Pyridoxine Benefits – Depression and Moods

Importance of Vitamin B6 for Depression and Moods

Many people with anxiety and depression find taking a Vitamin B complex very helpful, however it is interesting to know what vitamin B6 can do for you. There are eight B vitamins needed by the body and one of these is Vitamin B6 which is also referred to as pyridoxine.

Vitamin B6 Foods for Depression and Moods

B vitamins enable the body to convert food into carbohydrates and glucose in order to supply our body’s energy. These B vitamins also aid in metabolizing protein and fats, but that’s not all they do.

Here are a few more benefits that vitamin B6 can do in relation to depression, our moods and our general health.

B6 Deficiency a Symptom of Depression

The National Institute of Health reveals that one of the symptoms of a vitamin B6 deficiency is depression.  A study that took place and was published in “Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics”, showed that those people who were deficient in vitamin B6 manifested several symptoms of depression.

Another study published in the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry further supported the claim that a vitamin B6 deficiency can lead to mood disorders and depression.

Another important function of Vitamin B6 is to aid in the production of oxygen-carrying hemoglobin.  A deficiency has been associated with feelings of tiredness and inattentiveness.

Food Sources of Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 can be obtained by eating beef liver, potatoes, raw garlic and some non-citrus fruits.

Other good food sources of this vitamin would include bananas, nuts, beans, avocados, fortified breakfast cereals, dried herbs, spices, salmon, cod and tuna.  The key here is to see to it that you eat a balanced diet every day. Of course if you do, you won’t be deficient in any valuable vitamins and minerals. Plus, your depression symptoms and moods won’t be affected from a B6 deficiency either.

Vitamin B6 and the other B vitamins are water-soluble.  This goes to say that the body cannot store them so we need to add them to our daily diet.

  • Any deficiency of vitamin B6 will adversely affect several brain functions and development.

With the help of vitamins B9 and B12, vitamin B6 is also responsible for controlling the homocysteine levels in our blood. Homocysteine is another type of amino acid which is commonly associated with heart health problems. Vitamin B6 is very important for better absorption of vitamin B12 and for the production of red blood cells and immune system cells.

Please keep in mind that one must observe the necessary precautions when deciding to take any supplements, including vitamin B6 supplements for anxiety and depression. A high dosage of vitamin B6 supplements may lead to neurological disorders.  Abdominal pain and nausea are also two of the known side effects of taking very high doses of vitamin B6 supplements.

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About Jennifer Johnson

I suffered with social anxiety and stress for years. I discovered what my triggers were and learned to control them. Hopefully some of the natural anxiety relief techniques I have tried, will also be your solution.


  1. Hello I have very high anxiety and I am on meds I didn’t have anxiety until I had a stroke I been in and out of hospital because my anxiety gets the better of me and blood pressure blows up I don’t think my meds r working Ian Totally scared of having another stroke I am only 49 years old I am married to a wonderful man but he has to take time off work just to take me to emerg what can I do

    • Jennifer Johnson says

      Hi Shelley,

      I am not a doctor, so I cannot advise what you can do.

      I know I would be following my doctor’s recommendations on how I could reduce my risk of another stroke.

      For the anxiety I would definitely be trying to reduce all stress as much as possible, so I could focus on being relaxed, both mentally and physically.

      I know that sounds difficult… but do what relaxes you. Is it listening to soft music, taking a walk in a park, drawing/coloring… those sorts of things.

      Don’t focus on the bad, be proactive and focus on good things.

      That’s the only advice I would be allowed to give…. but hope it helps.

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