According to a study from Harvard Medical School, women with higher intakes of vitamin B6 either from food or supplements may be less likely to develop colon or rectum cancer. The findings of this study are very promising.
For this study, researchers analyzed the blood samples taken in 1989 from nearly 33,000 women. They measured the levels of vitamin B6 (as pyridoxal 5’- phosphate or PLP) in the blood, among women who later developed colorectal cancer or polyps and a sample of women who remained free of these conditions. Besides this they all collected data from food frequency questionnaires and information about supplement use.
After dividing the women into four groups by PLP levels, the investigators found that those with the highest levels had the lowest incidence of colorectal cancer and polyps. It was found that total vitamin B6 intake was also inversely related to the likelihood of developing colorectal cancer.
According to the study researchers’ vitamin B6 is one of the several nutrientsthat are critical to the biochemical pathways that play an important role in making and maintaining DNA (cell’s package of genetic information). Disturbances in this process can push a cell toward becoming cancerous.
Dietary sources of vitamin B6 include poultry, fish, meats, legumes, bananas, potatoes, cabbage, walnuts, avocados, whole grains and fortified cereals