Pyridoxamine for diabetes care

Pyridoxamine is a vitamer, or form of vitamin B6, that is particularly effective for treating neuropathy and retinopathy associated with diabetes and kidney stones.

Pyridoxal, pyridoxine, and pyridoxamine are the compounds that compose vitamin B6. Its primary function is aiding the synthesis of several neural messengers including GABA, dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin.

Unlike pyridoxine, you can take high doses of pyridoxamine without concern for peripheral neuropathy (damage to the peripheral nervous system). Its chemical structure gives it the particular ability to scavenge free radical species that sugar and lipid oxidation form. It also chelates with metal ions, which helps remove toxins from the body.

Pyridoxamine and aging

Type 2 diabetes is a disease that continues to plague the developed world, particularly for the aging population forced to manage related metabolic, weight, circulation and low-energy problems.

Aldose reductase is an enzyme that is nearly insignificant when your metabolism is healthy, but wreaks havoc for those with diabetes, and may be responsible for many of the disease’s complications.

Pyridoxamine provides protection against glycosylation, or glucose oxidation, which is the cross-linking process that happens when glucose, or sugar, reacts with oxygen and protein and forms free radicals. This is a risk factor for premature aging and disease.

Oxidation is an additional age-related disease precursor, which environmental pollutants and the over-burdening of the body’s natural antioxidants stores exacerbate.

Oxygen circulating the body damages healthy cells, and the body’s antioxidant defense system neutralizes the resulting free radicals.

In modern times, however, the sheer high-level load of toxins in the environment resulting from stress increases the number of free radical induced mutations in healthy DNA, which if left untreated replicate and develop disease.

Pyridoxamine can block the production of the hydroxyl free radical from hydrogen peroxide and scavenge it directly.

Do I have a pyridoxamine or vitamin B6 deficiency?

A discernible vitamin B6 deficiency is uncommon, except with excessive alcohol use, which can impair metabolism and absorption. Symptoms of vitamin B6 deficiency include irritability, depression, confusion and seizures.

How can I add pyridoxamine to my diet?

Dietary sources of pyridoxamine include fish, chicken, walnuts, carrots, eggs, and other foods.

Supplementing with pyridoxamine

Pyridoxamine is typically available as a supplement in the pill form.

How much pyridoxamine should I take?

A recommended standard dose is 200 mg twice a day.

Side effects

Taking a pyridoxamine supplement can result in side effects such as nausea and stomach upset.


A pyridoxamine supplement may contraindicate with the following medications:

  • Hydralazine (Apresoline)
  • Cycloserine (Seromycin)
  • Isoniazid
  • Penicillamine
  • Amiodarone (Cordarone)
  • Theophylline (TheoDur)
  • Antibiotics, Tetracycline
  • Antidepressant Medications
  • Levodopa (L-dopa)
  • Chemotherapy drugs
  • Erythropoietin (EPO)
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin)

To avoid an interaction, discuss any supplement taken alongside a prescription medication with a physician.


  1. Metz, Thomas O., et al. Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics. “Intervention Against the Maillard Reaction in Diabetes and Aging — Minireview: Pyridoxamine, an Inhibitor of Advanced Glycation and Lipoxidation Reactions: A Novel Therapy for Treatment of Diabetic Complications.” 1 Nov 2003.
  2. Chetyrkina, Sergei, et al. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications. “Pyridoxamine Protects Protein Backbone from Oxidative Fragmentation.”
  3. University of Maryland Medical Center. “Vitamin B6.” 29 Jun 2011.

Last reviewed 03/Mar/2017


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