Autism Therapy Using Vitamin B6 and Magnesium

One of the most popular alternative therapies for autism is vitamin supplementation of B6 and magnesium. Vitamin B6 is necessary for scores of biological functions, one of which is when an enzyme converts B6 into a compound called pyroxidal-5-phosphate (PLP) which produces brain chemicals such as dopamine which affects mood and behavior. Some research suggests that this conversion process is impaired in autistic children and they are therefore lacking the necessary levels of dopamine.Magnesium is an essential mineral for the health of every cell in the body, including brain cells. In addition, magnesium is needed in order for B6 to work properly. Autistic children have been found to have low levels of magnesium in their hair and blood. Magnesium supplements have been found to improve behavior, speech, language, and eye contact in some studies of autistic children.The levels of both B6 and magnesium that have been thought to be effective against autism symptoms are much higher than the normal daily recommendation. High levels of B6 can cause constipation and other digestive issues. High levels of magnesium can cause diarrhea- or in excessive amounts can even be toxic. It is important to take the two together however, as magnesium not only helps B6 to work properly but also helps to control its side effects. Consult with your child’s doctor before determining what dose to use. It is important to use a general multivitamin as well since vitamins and minerals all work together in maintaining bodily functions.