Check out our latest magazine... Read Online

The Vitamin Supplement That Can Reduce Feelings Of Depression And Anxiety

High-dose vitamin B6 tablets have been shown to reduce feelings of depression and anxiety, according to new research.

Young adults studied by the University of Reading reported less of these feelings after a month of taking the supplements.

Past studies have suggested multivitamins can cut stress levels but few have looked into exactly which vitamins may be responsible.

Vitamin B6 is known to boost the body's production of GABA (Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid), a chemical that blocks impulses between the brain's nerve cells.

Lead author Dr David Field said the vitamin "helps the body produce a specific chemical messenger that inhibits impulses in the brain, and our study links this calming effect with reduced anxiety among the participants".

Some 478 people took part and were randomly given either a placebo, or vitamin B6 or B12 at doses higher than the normal recommendation.

B12 showed little difference to the placebo, but B6 had a notable effect on the participants and raised their GABA levels, the study found.

Tuna, chickpeas and many fruits and vegetables contain the vitamin, but Dr Field said supplementation would likely be necessary to achieve a positive effect on a person's mood.

He said the research was at an early stage - and the effects were "quite small" compared with medication - but that B6 could be combined with more traditional therapies.

"One potential option would be to combine Vitamin B6 supplements with talking therapies such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy to boost their effect," he said.

He added that another benefit is that "nutrition-based interventions produce far fewer unpleasant side effects than drugs".

The research is published in the journal Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical and Experimental.

More from Lifestyle

  • Five Most Frustrating Board Games To Play With The Family

    Board games are a timeless family pastime, bringing people together for fun, strategy, and a bit of friendly competition. However, not all board games are created equal when it comes to family harmony. Some games, while popular and beloved, can lead to more frustration than fun. Here are five of the most frustrating board games to play with the family:

  • Five Wonders Of The World To Visit In Your Lifetime

    In a world brimming with natural splendour and human ingenuity, choosing the ultimate destinations to visit can be overwhelming. Yet, certain places stand out for their sheer majesty and cultural significance, captivating the hearts of travellers for generations. Here are five wonders of the world you must visit in your lifetime, each offering a unique glimpse into the planet's beauty and history:

  • Five Unique Walking Routes for UK Summer

    As summer arrives, it’s the perfect time to explore some of the country’s most unique walking routes. Whether you're seeking breath-taking views, historical landmarks, or serene natural beauty, these five walking routes promise unforgettable experiences:

  • Dream Destinations with Baldwins Travel

    Since opening in September 2023 in Haywards Heath, Baldwins Travel are connecting to the local community, and of course, booking dreamy holidays too! Sara Whatley reports

  • Five Most Unique Drinks From Across Europe

    From the chilly Nordic countries to the sun-drenched Mediterranean, the continent’s diverse climates and traditions have given birth to drinks that are not only delicious but also steeped in cultural significance. Here are five of the most unique drinks from across Europe that you must try:

Get Social