Vitamin B6 Supplementation Reduces Symptoms of Depression in College Women Taking Oral Contraceptives: A Randomized, Double-Blind Crossover Trial

Anne C. Curtin, Carol S. Johnston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Oral contraceptive (OC) users have a heightened risk of low plasma concentrations of vitamin B6, a cofactor in the tryptophan-serotonin pathway critical to mood regulation. The purpose of this crossover study was to determine whether vitamin B6 supplementation reduced symptoms of depression and improved mood states in college women using OC. Participants were healthy (aged 18–25 yrs), did not take dietary supplements, and used OC (estrogen with progestin) consistently for at least 1 year. During the 12-week, randomized, double-blind crossover trial (4-week treatment periods [100 mg vitamin B6 daily or placebo] separated by a 4-week washout) participants (n = 8) maintained normal exercise and eating patterns and recorded tablet consumption daily. The Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II) and Profile of Mood States (POMS) were used to assess mental health before and after each 4-week treatment period. Average dietary vitamin B6 intakes did not vary during the trial (1.2–1.4 mg/d), whereas vitamin B6 status rose significantly following the B6 supplementation period compared to the other three time points. BDI-II scores were reduced 20% by vitamin B6 supplementation in comparison to an 11% rise with placebo ingestion (p = 0.046). POMS scores were not significantly impacted by vitamin B6 supplementation. These preliminary data support a growing literature suggesting the benefits of B6 supplementation for reducing symptoms of depression in young women using OC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Dietary Supplements
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • depression
  • mood state
  • oral contraceptives
  • vitamin B6

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Pharmacology (medical)

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Vitamin B6 Supplementation Reduces Symptoms of Depression in College Women Taking Oral Contraceptives: A Randomized, Double-Blind Crossover Trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this