Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, is one of the eight B complex vitamins. It was discovered in 1932, but scientists are learning new things about it.
Most people get enough B6 in their diet, but if you’re deficient in B-complex vitamins like folate and B12, you’re more likely to be deficient in B6 ( 1Trusted Source ).
Vitamin B6 deficiency is more common in people with liver, kidney, digestive and autoimmune diseases, as well as in smokers, obese people, alcoholics, and pregnant women (2, 3, 4Trusted Source).
B6 is involved in over 150 enzyme reactions in your body. They help your body process proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. B6 is closely related to the functioning of your nervous and immune systems ( 3 , 5 , 6 Trusted Source ).
Recently, B6 has been shown to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This means it plays an important role in preventing chronic diseases like heart disease and cancer ( 5Trusted Source , 7Trusted Source , 8Trusted Source ).
Here are 9 symptoms of vitamin B6 deficiency.
- Skin rash
Vitamin B6 deficiency is one cause of a red, itchy rash known as seborrheic dermatitis.
The rash can appear on the scalp, face, neck, or upper chest. It’s known for its greasy, flaky appearance, and it can cause swelling or white spots ( 9Trusted Source ).
One reason why B6 deficiency can lead to skin rashes is because the vitamin helps synthesize collagen, which is essential for healthy skin. In these cases, B6 can help the rash clear up quickly (10, 11Trusted Source).
Some people with seborrheic dermatitis have higher B6 requirements. B6 face cream has helped improve the symptoms of seborrheic dermatitis in some people (12).
- Chapped and painful lips
Cheilosis, characterized by chapped corners of the mouth, sore, red, and swollen lips, can be caused by B6 deficiency. Cuts can bleed and become infected.
In addition to being extremely painful, chapped and sore lips make it difficult to do activities such as eating and speaking.
Correcting B6 deficiency with foods or supplements rich in the vitamin will alleviate these symptoms.
In particular, lack of riboflavin, folate, iron and other nutrients, sunny, dry or windy weather and other external factors (133. Pain, glossy tongue) can cause this condition.
If you are deficient in B6, your tongue may become swollen, sore, smooth, inflamed, and red. This is called glossitis.
The glossy and smooth surface of the tongue is caused by loss of papillae. These are bumps on your tongue. Glossitis causes problems with chewing, swallowing, and speaking.
B6 supplementation treats glossitis if deficiency is the only cause.
Deficiency of other nutrients such as folate and B12 can lead to this condition. Adequate intake of all these vitamins is necessary to eliminate glossitis (15).