Medically reviewed on January 23, 2023 by Morgan Spicer, Medical Communications Manager. To give you technically accurate, evidence-based information, content published on the Everlywell blog is reviewed by credentialed professionals with expertise in medical and bioscience fields.
If you’ve recently started taking a vitamin B6 supplement, or you’re adding vitamin B6-rich foods to your diet, you may have questions about vitamin B6 toxicity.
How much vitamin B6 is too much? The US Food and Nutrition Board’s published Tolerable Upper Intake Levels for Vitamin B6 state that adults over the age of 19 shouldn’t consume more than 100 mg of vitamin B6 per day (even if they’re pregnant or breastfeeding) .
But, what happens when you take too much vitamin B6? How can you avoid vitamin B6 toxicity in the first place? Let’s dive deeper.
Vitamin B6 is a water-soluble vitamin humans need to maintain healthy bodily functions . Vitamin B6 is called essential because we cannot synthesize it on our own. This means we have to consume it either in the food we eat or as a supplement. Vitamin B6 takes three main forms, each of which have a variety of functions in the body:
While vitamin B6 is mostly used for protein metabolism in the body, it’s also involved in several biological processes such as :
If you eat a healthy, diverse diet filled with fruits, vegetables, fish, and legumes, you are most likely gaining a substantial amount of vitamin B6 levels through your diet. However, if you’d like to increase your B6 intake, consider adding these foods to your plate :
When it comes to vitamin B6 toxicity, yes, you can ingest too much vitamin B6. But the current scientific findings suggest that toxic levels are more possible through supplementation and far less possible through food.
There are two things to note about vitamin B6 toxicity :
The latter point should ease most of your worries about B6 toxicity. Further, the National Institute of Health notes that toxicity typically only occurs when :
The typical vitamin B6 supplement dosages typically average between 50 and 100 milligrams. To reach toxic levels, you’d have to take 10+ doses per day multiple days in a row.
In the unlikely chance that you experience toxic levels of vitamin B6, you may experience the following symptoms :
If you reach toxic levels of B6 and are taking other medications, your symptoms may differ in severity. For example :
If you experience any of the symptoms above, you should contact a healthcare provider right away.
While reaching toxic levels of vitamin B6 is difficult to do, if you do experience high levels, stop taking vitamin B6 immediately to halt the negative vitamin B6 side effects and symptoms. The more severe symptoms involving the nervous system may take longer than the milder ones to subside.
The National Institute of Health notes that :
If you suspect that you’re experiencing B6 toxicity, it’s critical that you stop taking the supplements right away. It could be the key to alleviating your symptoms.
So, how do you make sure you’re getting enough B6 without risking vitamin B6 toxicity? Here are some tips:
While vitamin B6 toxicity is possible, it’s unlikely unless you’re taking extremely high oral doses of a B6 supplement (10+ doses per day). That said, we recommend consulting a healthcare provider before adding any supplement (including vitamin B12, vitamin D, vitamin C, vitamin B, etc.) to your routine.
With Everlywell's vitamin B6 supplements, it's easy to get this key nutrient (as well as various other vitamins and supplements). Learn more about Everlywell's vitamin B options today.
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