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Is Vitamin B3 And Niacin The Same Thing

Health Benefits Of Vitamin B3

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) Quick Review
  • Smriti Agarwal
  • Vitamin B3 is also popularly known as Niacin
  • Vitamin B3 or Niacin is a water-soluble vitamin
  • Foods such as fish, nuts and chicken are good sources of this vitamin

Vitamin B3 is also popularly known as Niacin. It is a very important nutrient as every part of the body needs it to function properly. Vitamin B3 or Niacin is primarily used to lower high cholesterol levels in the body. It is also used to treat respiratory or vascular disorders. Foods such as fish, nuts and chicken are good sources of this vitamin. It aids in good blood circulation, normal functioning of the brain and boosting memory. It is important to consume appropriate portions of this vitamin as an over dose might cause adverse affects to your health. Vitamin B3 or Niacin is a water-soluble vitamin that can travel through the human blood stream and thus the body has the option to discharge excess vitamins in form of urine. Therefore, such vitamins can be taken through both food and liquid items, since our body does need a constant supply. According to Delhi-based Nutritionist Dr. Simran Saini, “The prime benefit of Vitamin B3 is that it keeps your bones stronger by helping in the retention of calcium.”

What Is Vitamin B3

Being one of the water-soluble vitamins, niacin is not stored in the body in large quantities. Most excess amounts of this vitamin are excreted through the urine. Niacin, another vitamin B3 name, was created by blending three words into one nicotinic acid vitamin.

That said, nicotinic acid isnt the only form of vitamin B3. Other forms include nicotinamide, inositol hexanicotinate, and related derivatives. Interestingly, they all have different uses in the body.

It Promotes Joint Health

Vitamin B3 in the form of niacinamide has been shown to increase joint mobility and decrease joint pain, inflammation, and swelling. Because of its anti-inflammatory effect on joints, niacin may serve as a good treatment option for people with arthritis.

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How Should I Take Niacin

Use niacin exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Read all medication guides or instruction sheets.

Niacin can cause flushing . These effects should disappear over time as you keep taking the medicine. Flushing may be worse if you drink alcohol or hot beverages shortly after taking niacin.

Swallow the capsule or tablet whole and do not crush, chew, break, or open it.

Your dose needs may change if you switch to a different brand, strength, or form of this medicine. Avoid medication errors by using only the form and strength your doctor prescribes.

If you stop taking niacin for any length of time, talk with your doctor before starting the medication again. You may need to restart the medication at a lower dose.

This medicine can affect the results of certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using this medicine.

Niacin is only part of a complete treatment program that may also include diet, exercise, and weight control. Follow your diet, medication, and exercise routines very closely.

Your doctor may recommend you take aspirin or an NSAID to help prevent flushing. Keep using these medicines for as long as your doctor has prescribed.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Vitamin B3 Health Benefits

Pellagra: Nutrition History

The various forms of vitamin B3 or niacin in the form of food, supplements, and even topical creams have been associated with everything from supporting heart and mood to clearer skin. Here are some of their most well-researched perks, along with some promising preliminary findings that warrant further study:

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How Much Do You Need

The Recommended Daily Allowance for niacin depends on your age and gender. For ages 7 months and older, it is expressed as mg niacin equivalents . One NE is equal to 1 mg of niacin or 60 mg of tryptophan (


The recommended amount of niacin depends on your age and gender. Men need 16 mg NE per day, while women who are not pregnant or breastfeeding need 14 mg NE per day.

The Benefits Of Vitamin B3

In short, it’s incredibly restorative. “Nicotinamide helps restore cellular energy, repair damaged DNA, and reduce the immunosuppressive effects of sun-induced UV rays.” With a fountain of youth likeness, Herrmann compares vitamin B3 to that of a “well-oiled machine,” fighting off internal and external stressors that can ultimately lead to the deterioration or breakdown of our skin and premature signs of aging like discoloration and wrinkles.

Concerning brightness specifically, she tells us: “Nicotinamide has been shown to prevent the transfer of pigment within the skin, which can help reduce brown spots.” Less redness , preserved hydration, a strengthened skin barrier, and the improved synthesis of healthy fats are other benefits cited by Herrmann.

“I recommend it for my sensitive skin patients, or those with other conditions such as rosacea or eczema,” Nazarian tells us. “It can also be found in sunscreens, such as Elta MD UV Clear, and is a good option for people who are concerned about irritation from their skincare products or have difficulty using creams due to allergies. The oral version can also be used to treat acneand is great when oral medications such as antibiotics arent well tolerated.”

Liz deSousa for BYRDIE

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It May Protect Against Alzheimers Disease

In a study published by the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry, dietary niacin was concluded to be a possible protector against Alzheimers disease and age-related cognitive decline. A higher intake of niacin may be associated with a slower rate of cognitive decline over time.

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Niacin As A Treatment For High Cholesterol

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) Mnemonic

Pellagra has become a thing of the past, but we’ve learned that niacin does a lot more, identified as a treatment for high cholesterol in the decades that followed.

As noted in the Mayo Clinic, doctors sometimes prescribe niacin to increase high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, more colloquially known as “good cholesterol.”

“Good cholesterol” functions to reduce low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in the blood, also known as the “bad cholesterol”, and its levels are associated with a lower risk for cardiovascular disease.

The CDC notes rising levels of “bad cholesterol” increase the risk of plaque formation in blood vessels. Plaque build-up and inflammation can make the vessels stiffer, causing high blood pressure. Niacin helps prevent this process by regulating how the liver produces cholesterol.

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What Vitamin B Nutrients Can I Use

B vitamins are a group of vitamins that help convert our food into fuel and offer a range of benefits for the nervous system and cell function.

  • Thiamin, or vitamin B1 he is found in peas, eggs and wholegrain bread and helps break down food. Men require 1mg per day, and women need 0.8mg per day.
  • Riboflavin, or vitamin B12 helps the skin, eyes and nervous system and is found in rice, eggs and fortified cereals. Men need 1.3mg per day and women need 1.1mg per day.
  • Niacin, or vitamin B3 supports the skin and helps energy growth. Wheat flour and eggs are good sources, and men need 16.5mg per day, require women need 13.2mg per day.
  • Vitamin B6 supports your blood to carry oxygen around the body. Many different foods are rich in this vitamin, including most vegetables and wholegrain products. Men should get 1.4mg per day, and women 1.2mg.
  • Vitamin B12 helps you produce blood cells and release energy from your food. Good sources include eggs and cheese, and men and women both need 1.5mg per day.

Nicotinamide Riboside’s Side Effects

NR is uniquely safeâ it’s been evaluated in 13 published human trials without any severe attributable side effects reported in clinical trials.

However, there are several forms of NR. Amongst them, Niagen® is the only patented form that has gone through the regulatory procedures to assess safety in key markets around the world.

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Now You Know Nicotinamide

So now you know that nicotinamide, or niacinamide as can be known, is simply Vitamin B3 you can hopefully see why its so well respected in the world of skincare.

Its versatility means that it can help strengthen your skins structure, as well as keep it hydrated from the inside and out.

28 April 2021

Plant Sources Of Niacin

Vitamin B3 Wirkung: Wofür wir Niacin brauchen

If youre a vegan looking to broaden your knowledge of vitamin B3-rich foods, this section could interest you. The following paragraphs will discuss excellent plant sources of niacin which, although not as bioavailable as the animal sources, are good enough to keep niacin deficiency at bay.


Peanuts are one of the go-to vitamin B3 foods for vegetarian diet followers looking to up their niacin levels. This is because you can get up to 4.3 mg of niacin from two tablespoons of peanut butter, or about 25% RDA for men and 30% RDA for women.

Besides offering decent amounts of B3 vitamin, peanuts are also good protein sources of protein, tocopherol, pyridoxine, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, and monounsaturated fatty acids.

Additionally, particularstudies indicate that peanuts have a role in preventing type 2 diabetes. Finally, though theyre relatively high in calories, they wont make you gain weight.


Avocados are one of the few vitamin B3 fruits.One avocado can provide up to 3.5 mg of niacin, which translates to 21% RDA for men and 25% RDA for women.

Additionally, avocados are good sources of monounsaturated fatty acids, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and potassium. Whats more, it contains twice the amount of potassium in comparison to bananas.


Studies show that mushrooms are also a good source of vitamin D.


Only one baked potato provides about 4.2 mg of niacin, which is 25% and 30% RDA for males and females, respectively.

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Vitamin B3 Foods You Should Add To Your Daily Menu

Vitamin B3, or niacin, belongs to B-complex vitamins. Niacin is one of the essential nutrients that our body needs to function normally. Some of its health benefits are enhancing mental health, lowering the risk of heart diseases, and decreasing bad cholesterol.

Thats why it is important to include vitamin B3 foods in your diet. If you are not sure where niacin can be found, this article will provide you with a list of healthy foods that contain this vital nutrient.

What Results Can You Expect

As with any new skin care product, you probably wont see any significant results for several weeks.

Although most of the available research describes noticeable improvements after four weeks of use, theres no exact timeline.

You may see even more changes to your skin after eight weeks. This includes smoother, toned, and hydrated skin.

If you dont see any changes within a couple of months, it may be time to consult with a dermatologist. They can assess your skin care routine and advise you on which products to use, dietary changes that may improve your skin health, and more.

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Aspirin Interacts With Niacin And Niacinamide

Aspirin is often used to reduce the flushing caused by niacin. These low doses of aspirin don’t seem to cause any issues when taken with niacin. But taking higher doses of aspirin, such as 1 gram daily, might decrease how fast the body gets rid of niacin. This could cause there to be too much niacin in the body and possibly lead to side effects. Stick with lower doses of aspirin, such as 325 mg or less.

Here Are Seven Important Benefits Of Vitamin B3 Or Niacin And Why You Should Have Enough Of It

Vitamin B3 (Niacin)

1. Regulated digestionVitamin B3 helps in the normal functioning of the human digestive system which in turn promotes a healthy appetite and glowing skin. This vitamin is important for many digestive tract functions, which includes the breakdown of fats, carbohydrates and alcohol. Loading up on niacin or vitamin B3 can be super-helpful and how!

Health benefits of niacin: Vitamin B3 helps in the normal functioning of the human digestive system 2. Treats pellagraPeople suffering from weak muscles, digestive problems, skin infections or pellagra mark a severe vitamin B3 deficiency. Pellagra is a disease caused by lack of the vitamin B3 in the body. These people need to incorporate an increased dosage of vitamin B3 though their diet or supplements as a part of their treatment. It is very important to consume more niacin rich food in order to avoid such a condition that may only worsen with time. 3. Improves skinVitamin B3 or Niacin helps in protecting the skin from sun damage. It is often used in cosmetics and creams used for anti-ageing. It is known to reverse sun damage and discoloration that may occur due to ageing. This multi-tasking vitamin helps heal wounds, strengthens the skin and stimulate its power to retain moisture.

Health benefits of niacin: Vitamin B3 or Niacin supplements are often used to treat most disorders like anxietyHealth benefits of niacin: Niacin is helps in treating diabetes

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It May Improve Mental Health

Dietary habits have a significant influence on many mental disorders including depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder. This has led to the development of nutritional guidelines to help manage these conditions. Niacin deficiency has shown a possible link to some mental disorders.

Studies have documented reduced cerebral blood flow in depressed patients and improved cerebral blood flow following antidepressant treatment. Niacin is believed to increase cerebral blood flow, so there is potential to use niacin supplementation along with prescription antidepressants.

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Everything You Need To Know About Vitamin B3 Foods

Vitamin B3, also known as niacin, is one of the B-complex vitamins. Its a water-soluble vitamin naturally found in many vitamin B3 foods and dietary supplements.

Niacin is a generic term for the various forms of vitamin B3. In other words, vitamin B3 derivatives such as nicotinamide riboside, nicotinamide , and nicotinic acid are all generically referred to as niacin.

The most well-known niacin-rich foods, as itll be described in detail in the following paragraphs, include liver, chicken, turkey, ground beef, fish, and avocado. However, youll also learn that tryptophan-rich food sources may also be regarded as sources of niacin. This is because our bodies can convert tryptophan to NAD , a form of niacin.

Read on to find out about the major sources of vitamin B3, how niacin is absorbed and excreted, and details about deficiency and toxicity.

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What Is Nicotinamide For Skin

Nicotinamide shows promise for the treatment of a wide range of dermatological conditions, including autoimmune blistering disorders, acne, rosacea, ageing skin and atopic dermatitis. In particular, recent studies have also shown it to be a potential agent for reducing actinic keratoses and preventing skin cancers.

What Do Niacin And Niacinamide Do

What is niacin (vitamin B3)?

These two compounds are very similar and share a lot of the same properties and effects. The main function of both niacin and niacinamide is to convert into its main metabolically active form, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, better known as NAD+.

NAD+ is a molecule that lives in our cells and helps with biological processes like getting energy from food and setting our circadian rhythms. NAD+ is also super important to the health and aging processes, because it supports the immune system and repairs damaged DNA.

Studies have shown that as we get older, our NAD+ levels actually decline, and thats associated with age-related pathologies such as cellular senescence, which is where healthy cells stop dividing properly and ultimately die. Research has also linked a lack of NAD+ dependent enzymes to age-related neurological disorders such as Parkinsons, Huntingtons, and Alzheimers disease.

Basically, NAD+ plays an important part in our bodies functions and aging processes deep down at a cellular level, and NAD+ is made from niacin and/or niacinamide.

Thats great for our overall health, but niacin and niacinamide also have benefits for our skins appearance. They increase the level of healthy lipids called ceramides, which bind cells together, creating a protective layer that locks in moisture and plumps the skin. This improves the appearance and texture of dry skin, as well as provides a more effective barrier against viruses, bacteria, and other antigens.

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It May Lower Blood Pressure

Small clinical trials of using niacin have shown it has significant blood pressure lowering effects in people with hypertension. Additionally, sudden lowering of blood pressure is described in the package insert of prescription niacin. However, in larger clinical trials involving niacin and niacin-containing regimens there showed either no clear significant effects of niacin or slightly lower mean blood pressure among some niacin treatment groups compared with placebo.

More studies need to be done to determine how effective niacin can be for lowering blood pressure and reducing the risk of cardiovascular events, but so far the research seems promising.

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Signs Of Deficiency And Toxicity


A niacin deficiency is rare in the United States and other industrialized countries because it is well-absorbed from most foods and is added to many foods and multivitamins. A severe niacin deficiency leads to pellagra, a condition that causes a dark, sometimes scaly rash to develop on skin areas exposed to sunlight bright redness of the tongue and constipation/diarrhea. Other signs of severe niacin deficiency include:

  • Depression
  • Hallucinations

Groups at risk for deficiency

  • Limited diets. People whose diets are limited in both variety and quantity of foods, such as those living in poverty or who are very ill and cannot eat a balanced diet, are at increased risk. Developing countries that eat corn or maize as a main food source are at risk for pellagra, as these foods are low in both absorbable niacin and tryptophan.
  • Chronic alcoholism. The absorption of several nutrients, particularly water-soluble vitamins including the B family, is decreased with excessive alcohol intake.
  • Carcinoid syndrome. This is a disease of slow-growing cancer cells in the gut that release a chemical called serotonin. The syndrome causes tryptophan in the diet to be converted into serotonin rather than niacin, which increases the risk of decreased niacin.


Other signs:

  • Nausea
  • Blurred vision
  • Impaired glucose tolerance and inflammation of liver in severe cases

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