A simple trip down the vitamin and health supply aisle of your nearest grocer will have you believe that there are an infinite amount of supplements and pills you should be taking in order to improve your health, restore your immune system, get a better night’s sleep, and so on. Think about it: we are told to take our multivitamins, “eat the rainbow” when it comes to our diets, and – the latest trend, it seems – to drink at least a gallon of water per day. Testimonials all over the Internet swear that if you follow those three steps, you will experience full-body benefits, both inside and out, with the most noticeable change being your skin. Apparently, all you need to clear your face and body of blemishes and acne is 128 fluid ounces of water per day, as some state.
While all of the above are great for you and will no doubt improve some aspect of your health, what most people do not realize is that there are specific vitamins that will target specific functions in your body. Taking a multivitamin may deliver the benefits that your body needs, but can it target, say, your acne and improve your skin? The short answer is no. This is where Vitamin B6 steps in, one of the most important vitamins responsible for helping to clear skin and target your pesky acne.
What is B6?
B6 belongs to the family of B vitamins; you may recognize its “brother” B12 as the energy vitamin. B6 is a crucial element in our metabolic process, as it aids in breaking down fats, carbs, and proteins in the body. B6 also plays a role in regulating certain functions that affect our skin, which means that getting the right amount of B6 on a daily basis can help combat oily and flaky skin, chapped lips, and dandruff, among other issues.
The Science Behind It
So what is it that Vitamin B6 actually does for the skin? For one, it mitigates the damaging effects of testosterone on the skin, particularly the face. As all guys know, when you hit puberty and that testosterone sky-rocketed, your skin changed; not only did facial hair start to appear, but the oil levels all over your body changed as well, especially on the face. We know there is a pretty clear connection between oily skin and acne. B6 effectively works to lessen the effects of testosterone-inducing oil to make it so that your skin is less susceptible to adult acne.
B6 also helps with the replication and restoration of skin cells. When you shed dead skin cells, your body is responsible for replacing them with new and improved skin cells. B6 aids greatly in the process of making sure that the new cells are just that: new. If there is a problem with cell replication, your epidermis is not going to look healthy; it is going to remain looking deprived of nutrients, unsightly, and perhaps a little discolored. Getting enough B6 ensures that the skin cell replication process goes smoothly.
Where is B6 Found?
Besides the vitamin aisle next to the colorful, fruit-flavored multivitamins, B6 is found in many grains – especially those containing white flour – that we find in everyday foods. If you are avoiding white flour for health reasons, you can also find your recommended dose of B6 in the following foods:
- Tuna Fish
- Lean meats such as turkey and chicken
- Dried fruits such as apricots or prunes
- Bell peppers
Recommended Daily Dose
The beauty of B6 is that you do not need a hefty daily dose for the vitamin to do the job. It only takes around 1.9 mg for women and 2.4 mg for men. So the next time you find yourself in that colorful health supply aisle, check your multivitamins to see if you’re getting the recommended daily dose. If not, choose a B6 vitamin or simply up the amount of foods listed above in your diet.