Home Doctor NewsMental health Vitamin B6 pills may lower anxiety and sadness: Research

Vitamin B6 pills may lower anxiety and sadness: Research

by Pragati Singh

A recent study found that using high-dose vitamin B6 pills reduced anxiety and depression symptoms.

The research findings were published in the journal ‘Human Psychopharmacology Clinical and Experimental.’ Researchers from the University of Reading studied the effects of high dosages of Vitamin B6 on young people and discovered that they felt less worried and sad after taking the supplements every day for a month.

The study adds to the body of data supporting the use of supplements known to alter brain activity levels in the prevention or treatment of mood disorders.

Dr David Field, lead author from the University of Reading’s School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, stated:

“The brain’s operation is dependent on a careful balance between excitatory neurons, which transport information, and inhibitory neurons, which prevent excessive activity.

“Recent hypotheses have linked mood disorders and several other neuropsychiatric illnesses to a disruption of this equilibrium, frequently in the direction of increased brain activity.

“Vitamin B6 aids the body’s production of a particular chemical messenger that suppresses impulses in the brain, and our study relates this calming impact to lower anxiety among participants.”

While prior research has shown that multivitamins or marmite can lower stress levels, few studies have looked into specific vitamins are responsible for this impact.

The current study focuses on the possible effect of Vitamin B6, which is known to promote the body’s synthesis of GABA (Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid), a molecule that slows nerve cell impulses in the brain.

In the current study, over 300 volunteers were randomly allocated to either Vitamin B6 or B12 pills considerably beyond the recommended daily consumption (about 50 times the RDA) or a placebo and were instructed to take one a day with meals for a month.

During the experimental time, Vitamin B12 had minimal impact compared to placebo, while Vitamin B6 produced a statistically significant difference.

Visual tests performed at the conclusion of the experiment indicated that subjects who had taken Vitamin B6 supplements had higher levels of GABA, confirming the idea that B6 was responsible for the reduction in anxiety. Subtle but insignificant alterations in visual performance were identified, consistent with regulated levels of brain activation.

According to Dr. Field, “Vitamin B6 is found in a variety of foods, including tuna, chickpeas, and a variety of fruits and vegetables. However, the large dosages employed in this experiment imply that supplements would be required to have a favourable effect on mood.

“It is essential to note that this research is still in its early stages, and the effect of Vitamin B6 on anxiety in our trial was rather tiny in comparison to what you would anticipate from medicine. However, because nutrition-based therapies have fewer negative side effects than medications, individuals may prefer them as an intervention in the future.

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“Further study is needed to uncover alternative nutrition-based therapies that promote mental health, allowing diverse dietary interventions to be integrated in the future to produce higher outcomes.

“One possible approach would be to mix Vitamin B6 pills with talking therapies such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy to increase their effectiveness.”

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