Vitamin B6: Pyridoxine
Vitamin B6: Pyridoxine
Vitamin B6 is a group of chemicals, the most common of which is called pyridoxine. It is involved in breaking carbohydrates down into energy, especially in muscle tissue, where most B6 is found. Vitamin B6 helps synthesize serotonin and dopamine, chemicals that carry signals between nerves. It also helps make hemoglobin, which carries oxygen in the blood.
What Types of Food Have Pyridoxine?
Pyridoxine in the World: Primeval Processes
Around 2.4 billion years ago, the concentration of molecular oxygen in Earth's atmosphere spiked. The Great Oxygenation Event paved the way for all plant and animal life. Recent studies of microbial fossils from that time have found that the most ancient reaction of aerobic metabolism, the process that uses oxygen to create all the energy inside you today, was the synthesis of pyridoxal, a form of Vitamin B6. So not only was B6 the first vitamin, it was the first product of life as we know it.
Click on the buttons to see how Vitamin B6 plays a role in your:
- Nervous System
- Hematological System
- Musculoskeletal System
You have millions of nerve cells that are communicating all the time. One way they communicate is by using chemicals called neurotransmitters. Your nerve cells use Vitamin B6’s help to make many important neurotransmitters, like serotonin and dopamine.
Take a deep breath -- doesn’t that feel good? All of the oxygen that just entered your lungs needs to get to the rest of your body. How does that happen?
Your bloodstream is filled with red blood cells. With the help of Vitamin B6, your red blood cells make “heme,” the main component of hemoglobin. When the oxygen you just inhaled enters your blood, hemoglobin latches onto it and your red blood cells transport it to the rest of your body.
You know your body gets energy from food, but what about when you’re not eating? Luckily, your body has energy stored for exactly those times! Glucose, the building block of sugars and carbs, gets stored away in the form of glycogen.
A lot of the glycogen in your body is in your muscles. When you haven’t eaten in a few hours, your body gets its glucose by breaking down glycogen. Vitamin B6 is a crucial part of this process.