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What You Need to Know about Pyridoxine HCl

What is pyridoxine hydrochloride? Pyridoxine is the form of vitamin B6 made by plants, especially in the germ of wheat, rice, and corn. Pyridoxine hydrochloride, also known as pyridoxine HCl, is a dry, white powder that can be used to make vitamin B supplements that last an especially long time as you store them on the shelf.

Almost everyone gets enough B6 to avoid deficiency symptoms such as chapped lips, swollen eyelids, and sleepiness, but not everyone gets enough vitamin B6 for optimum recovery from disease. Here are three things everyone needs to know about pyridoxine hydrochloride uses in supplements to fight disease and keep you healthy.

Three Things Everyone Needs to Know about Pyridoxine HCl

1. Pyridoxine hydrochloride formulas almost always include other B vitamins.

Unless you are taking a medication that depletes vitamin B6 and doesn't deplete other B vitamins (such as penicillamine or Isoniazid), you should take a "complete B" formula. That is because B vitamins work together. Here are some examples:

  • Your body can compensate for a niacin deficiency with pyridoxine.
  • The regulation of homocysteine, an inflammatory substance associated with heart disease and Alzheimer's, depends on at least pyridoxine (B6), niacin (B3), and cobalamine (B12).
  • People who have low levels of B6 are at greater risk of heart disease, but rates of heart disease don't go down unless they receive both B6 and folic acid.

2. People who eat "all natural" have a hard time getting enough pyridoxine.

The minimum B6 needed to avoid deficiency is about 1.7 milligrams a day in older adults. You can get that from three servings of fortified cereals and/or white bread. However, to get that much vitamin B6 from non-fortified food, you would need to eat:

  • 10 oz (280 grams) of light-meal chicken (cooked), or
  • 11 oz (308 grams) of cooked salmon, or
  • 4 bananas, or
  • 2-1/2 baked potatoes, with skin, or
  • 1 pound of raw spinach

Because most people do eat lots of highly processed cereals and bread, vitamin B6 is deficiency is rare-unless you are doing the right thing by eating all-natural!

3. Getting more B6 than the minimum can support recovery from an astonishing range of diseases.

As you can discover elsewhere on this site, B6 supplementation can be helpful in acne/rosacea, autism, attention deficit disorder and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, depression, high homocysteine, heart disease, elevated lipid levels, immune depression, morning sickness, depression associated with pregnancy, depression associated with oral contraceptive use, premenstrual syndrome and premenstrual dysphoric disorder, menopause symptoms, age-related cognitive decline and memory loss that is not caused by Alzheimer's, muscle cramps, chapped lips, conjunctivitis, bladder infections, high blood pressure, water retention, diabetic kidney disease, asthma, carpal tunnel syndrome, canker sores (aphthous ulcers), many forms of schizophrenia, vertigo,and overweight. But what about pyroxidine hydrochloride side effects?

If you take the recommended dosage, there aren't any.

The Linus Pauling Institute at the University of Oregon states that a few people who took 1,000 mg of pyridoxine HCl a day developed sensory neuropathy, a condition of burning, stinging, and numbness, in the hands and feet. That is the basis for the United States FDA's upper limit of 100 mg a day, to provide a 10-fold margin of safety. The governments of Australia and New Zealand set 50 mg a day as an absolute upper limit, and the UK and EU, 10 mg a day. But this is enough to do you a lot of good, especially if you are taking medications that deplete B6.

Vitamin B6 Pyridoxine Is Vital for Fighting Fatigue as You Grow Older

Pyridoxine: Natural Remedy for Depression, Lack of Energy, and Overweight

Pyridoxine deficiency diseases are really rare. There were a few cases in the United States in 1952, when a maker of infant formula forgot to add vitamin B6, and it's also possible to become pyridoxine-deficient if you are taking the drug penicillamine for arthritis, scleroderma, or arsenic poisoning, or if you are taking the high-dose form of niacin known as Isoniazid for high cholesterol.

Even in the developing world, almost every manages to get enough vitamin B6 to avoid the classic symptoms of pyridoxine deficiency, which are anemia, inflamed lips, inflamed eyes, and personality changes sometimes leading to seizures. That isn't to say that everyone gets all the pyridoxine they need.

How pyridoxine prevents depression, fatigue, and overweight. Pyridoxine is very important in the human body as a co-enzyme. A co-enzyme is a substance that binds to an enzyme to activate it for a chemical reaction. Without the pyridoxal 5-phosphate the body manufacturers from pyridoxine, the body could not make natural steroids that control inflammation. It could not use selenium to fight free radicals. It could not recycle homocysteine, which becomes inflammatory to the blood vessels and brain when it is present in excess.

But the most noticeable effect of not having enough vitamin B6 for most of us is in the brain. Vitamin B6 helps keep an amino acid called tryptophan from getting broken down by the liver. (The liver can, to a limited extent, turn tryptophan into niacin, when niacin is deficient.) When there's more trytophan in circulation, more gets into the brain, where it is turned into a hormone called serotonin.

Serotonin is a mood elevating hormone. When your brain makes enough serotonin, you don't feel depressed. You have more energy, but not too much. You don't get the "munchies" as much, either.

Vitamin Tablets

That's because sugar also helps trytophan travel across the blood-brain barrier into the brain. If you are getting enough trytophan into your brain with the help of pyridoxine, then you don't get sugar and snack cravings. This helps help you lose weight, if you are dieting, or keep it off, if you aren't.

Who needs more vitamin B6? There are four groups of people who need more than the minimum recommended daily intake of pyridoxine, also known as vitamin B6.

  • Women who take oral contraceptives (the Pill), which depletes the body of vitamin B6.
  • People who take 5-HTP for depression. 5-HTP becomes tryptophan, and some of the tryptophan becomes a byproduct, kynurenine. The byproduct forces tryptophan out of the brain, but pyridoxine stops this process.
  • People who don't get enough niacin. Of course, if you are niacin-deficient, you need to take niacin! But vitamin B6 can keep the liver from turning tryptophan into niacin. And,
  • People who have any of the diseases that are caused by the build up of advanced glycation end-products, which are essential "caramelization" of proteins all over the body due to prolonged exposure to too much sugar.

Most people should not take just a pyridoxine/B6 supplement. There is always a balance between niacin (B3), methylcobalamin (B12), and getting the full range of amino acids. But getting a balance of B vitamins can be helpful in an enormous range of health conditions, including acne/rosacea, autism, attention deficit disorder and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, depression, high homocysteine, heart disease, elevated lipid levels, immune depression, morning sickness, depression associated with pregnancy, depression associated with oral contraceptive use, premenstrual syndrome and premenstrual dysphoric disorder, menopause symptoms, age-related cognitive decline and memory loss that is not caused by Alzheimer's, muscle cramps, chapped lips, conjunctivitis, bladder infections, high blood pressure, water retention, diabetic kidney disease, asthma, carpal tunnel syndrome, canker sores (aphthous ulcers), many forms of schizophrenia, vertigo,and overweight.

Pyridoxine Deficiency - You May Be Getting Enough B6 Not to Be Sick, But Not Enough B6 to Be Well

Pyridoxine is the best-known form of vitamin B6, which the body uses to make the activated form of the vitamin pyridoxal 5-phosphate. Pyridoxine is the form of vitamin B6 found in plant foods, especially in whole grains, and it's the form of B6 that lasts longest in storage. The germ of seed grains is especially rich in pyridoxine.

It's a really rare event for anyone to have a B6 deficiency that causes a pyridoxine deficiency disease, but it's not rare for people to benefit from taking additional B6.

What the recommended daily intake of vitamin B6 does for you. The recommended daily intake of vitamin B6 was computed back in the 1940's, when nutritional scientists sought to use this newly discovered vitamin to prevent deficiency diseases.

If you don't get enough B6, your body can't make steroids. If you don't have natural steroids, you get pyridoxine deficiency symptoms such as chapped lips, swollen eyelids. Over time, you can suffer personality changes and even develop pyridoxine deficiency seizures.

It doesn't take a lot of pyridoxine to prevent these symptoms. A pyridoxine dose of just 0.1 milligram a day for infants up to 2.0 milligrams a day for nursing mothers will prevent classical vitamin B6 deficiency diseases. However, some people benefit from taking more than the minimum.

Who needs supplemental vitamin B6? If you eat the equivalent of a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner every day, and a large number of people in the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand do, then you definitely need supplemental vitamin B6.

People who eat large amounts of protein foods tend to get lots of the amino acid tryptophan. The brain uses trytophan to make the antidepressant chemical serotonin.

Ironically, too much tryptophan in the body can cause a buildup of the tryptophan byproduct kyurenine. As the brain makes more and more serotonin, kyurenine keeps the brain from absorbing trytophan to make the serotonin hormone that fights depression.

Getting more vitamin B6 won't cause the brain to absorb too much trytophan and make too much serotonin, but it will prevent the "blahs" that come along with a high-meat diet. The change in your mood can empower you to make the diet resolutions that will help you feel better for good.

Medications that deplete vitamin B6. People who take certain medications also need supplemental pyridoxine, up to 20 milligrams a day. Penicillamine, which is used to treat autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and scleroderma, can cause pyridoxine deficiency. So can Isoniazid, the niacin preparation for high cholesterol.

How much pyridoxine is too much? The few cases of pyridoxine overdose have occurred when more than 1,000 milligrams a day was taken for more than a month. Most regulatory agencies look for a 10-fold margin of safety. Accordingly, the United States sets the upper tolerable limit at 100 milligrams a day, and Australia and New Zealand set it at 50 milligrams a day. The UK and most of the countries in the European Union, however, limit pyridoxine supplementation to 10 milligrams per day.

Even this relatively low dose of B6 will help support recovery from a great number of health conditions. Most nutrition experts recommend 20 milligrams a day. Whatever dosage of B6 you choose, however, don't forget its co-factors, B12 and folic acid. The more meat you eat, the more B vitamins you need to keep all your B's in balance.You need complete B vitamins to get the best results.

Pyridoxine Side Effects - A Rare Complication of Vitamin Supplementation You Can Easily Avoid

Pyridoxine, the form of vitamin B6 found in seeds, nuts, fruit, and green vegetables, is an extremely inexpensive and extremely useful supplement.

The Common Effects of Pyridoxine Toxicity

As you will find elsewhere on this site, pyrixodine supplementation can support recovery from acne and rosacea, many forms of autism, both attention deficit disorder and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), rheumatoid although not osteoarthritis, most allergies, depression (and help make 5-HTP for depression work better), high homocysteine, heart disease, high cholesterol, immune deficiency, morning sickness, depression associated with pregnancy, depression associated with oral contraceptive use, premenstrual syndrome, menopause symptoms, age-related cognitive decline, seborrhea, dandruff, chapped lips, conjunctivitis, bladder infections, high blood pressure, water retention, diabetic kidney disease, asthma, carpal tunnel syndrome, canker sores, some forms of schizophrenia, vertigo,and overweight. But are there problems if you get too much?

It's really difficult to take too much pyridoxine. The recommended daily intakes at various stages of life are:

  • Infants, 0.1 milligram a day if fed formula, none if breast-fed.
  • Children 1 to 3 years, 0.3 milligrams a day.
  • Children 4 to 8 years, 0.5 milligrams a day.
  • Pyridoxine Foods
  • Children 9 to 13 years, 0.8 milligrams a day.
  • Teens, 14 to 18 years, 1.0 milligrams a day.
  • Adults under the age of 50, 1.3 milligrams a day.
  • Adults 51 and over, 1.7 milligrams a day.
  • Pregnant women, 1.9 milligrams a day.
  • Nursing mothers, 2.0 milligrams a day.

It's not possible to overdose on B6 from food. To get a potentially toxic dose of B6 causing pyridoxine side effects from fruit, for example, one would need to eat 2,500 bananas a day.

Most multivitamins contain just 2.0 milligrams of the pyridoxine form of B6. Neurological symptoms such as burning, stinging, and numbness occur when taking 1,000 milligrams a day. The United States Food and Drug Administration establishes a 10-fold safety margin, setting the upper limit at 100 milligrams per day. Australia and New Zealand set the limit at 50 milligrams per day, and the UK, 20 milligrams per day.

Proportionally less pyridoxine is recommended for teens, children, and infants. But at 20 milligrams per day, there have never been any reports of pyridoxine side effects.

It's more common to need more, especially if you have any of the conditions mentioned above. If you are not taking the whole bottle of multivitamins and looking for more, you won't ever overdose on pyridoxine.

Written By Robert S. Rister
Robert Rister is the author of Healing without Medication and many other books that have been translated into eight languages. He is a chemist, a formulator of natural products, and a writer of consumer guides to getting the greatest value from natural health care.

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