Weight loss clinics administer vitamin B-6 shots to dieters to aid in weight loss; however, some controversy exists regarding the injections' effectiveness and impact on long-term health. There can be positive results in weight loss that result from vitamin B-6 injections, but only if specific diet and exercise guidelines are met and no other health conditions or medications are present. Check with your physician before receiving B-6 vitamin injections for weight loss.
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Vitamin B-6, also known as pyridoxine, assists enzyme reactions in protein and red blood cell metabolism, according to the Office of Dietary Supplements, or ODS. In people consuming low-calorie diets, vitamin B6 aids in blood glucose regulation by helping convert stored nutrients into energy the body can use. This helps increase metabolism. Vitamin B-6 also increases thyroid activity, which increases resting metabolic rate. In amounts near or slightly above the recommended daily allowance, vitamin B-6 can increase energy, support immune system function and improve memory.
The ODS states that the recommended daily allowance of vitamin B-6 is 1.3 mg per day for men and women between the ages of 19 and 50. Men over 51 need 1.7 mg daily, and women over 51 need 1.5 mg per day. Pregnant and lactating women need 1.9 mg and 2.0 mg respectively. Vitamin B deficiency is rare in Americans, but can be found in people with low-quality diets.
Shots and Weight Loss
Vitamin B-6 shots are usually combined with vitamin B-12 in weight loss clinics. According to Acu-Cell Nutrition, vitamin B-12 helps increase energy and thyroid function, but in people who already get over their recommended amount of B-12, it can increase anxiety. Vitamin B-6 also increases thyroid activity and cardiac output. Although B-6 boosts thyroid activity immediately after the injection, activity drops soon after. Prolonged use of vitamin B-6 can actually lower thyroid activity in the long term, resulting in lower resting metabolic rate and making it more difficult to reach weight loss goals.
It is recommended that adequate vitamin intake be consumed through diet rather than supplementation. Fortified cereal, fish, chicken, pork, bananas and beans contain vitamin B-6. To achieve healthy weight loss, stick to a balanced diet full of fruits and vegetables, lean meats and whole grains. In weight loss clinics where vitamin B-6 is administered, clinicians provide food and exercise guidelines that should be followed.
The Food and Nutrition Board set an upper tolerable intake level, or UL, at 100 mg per day of vitamin B-6. Vitamin B6 shots can cause serious calcium deficiencies combined with high magnesium levels. Long term use of over 100 mg per day can cause spinal degeneration, increased cholesterol and triglycerides, heart palpitations, insomnia and worsen PMS symptoms.