Assessment of vitamin B6 status of strength and speedpower athletes

J Am Coll Nutr. 1994 Feb;13(1):87-94. doi: 10.1080/07315724.1994.10718377.


Objective: The investigation was designed to obtain information concerning the vitamin B6 status in high-performance athletes.

Subjects: Fifty-seven strength and speedpower athletes were available for examination.

Methods: Vitamin B6 status was determined by a 7-day weighed food record, enzyme activity (alpha-EGOT) measurement, whole blood concentrations (Saccharomyces carlsbergenisis and 4-pyridoxinic acid (4-PA) excretion (high-pressure liquid chromatography).

Results: The absolute vitamin B6 intake in > 30% of the athletes was below the German recommended dietary allowance (GRDA) and, in relation to the protein intake (GRDA 0.20 mg vitamin B6/g protein), > 60% of the athletes had values below the GRDA. More than 90% of the athletes did not attain the reference value (0.88 nmol/mL) for untrained individuals in vitamin B6 whole blood concentration, and only a few athletes (< 5%) had alpha-EGOT values above the reference value of alpha-EGOT > 1.50). The 4-PA excretion was below the reference value of > 2.73 mumol/g creatinine in 18% of all athletes examined.

Conclusions: Vitamin B6 status can be quantified using the weighed food record, microbiological whole blood determination, and 4-PA excretion; however, limits of the individual methods must be taken into account. Vitamin B6 supply of the athletes still cannot be definitively assessed because there are no generally valid reference values.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aspartate Aminotransferases / blood
  • Diet Records
  • Erythrocytes / enzymology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nutritional Status*
  • Pyridoxic Acid / urine
  • Pyridoxine / administration & dosage
  • Pyridoxine / blood*
  • Reference Values
  • Sports*


  • Pyridoxic Acid
  • Aspartate Aminotransferases
  • Pyridoxine