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What Foods Have Vitamin B3

Top 10 Vitamin B5 Foods

What is Vitamin B3 (Niacin) good for? + Foods High in Vitamin B3

By Dr. Josh Axe, DC, DNM, CN

Do you know some of the best vitamin B5 foods? Well first, do you know what is vitamin B5?

Vitamin B5 is a water-soluble vitamin found in many foods. Its also known as pantothenic acid.

What is pantothenic acid? Its simply another common name for this key B vitamin.

Pantothenic acid actually gets its name from the Greek root pantos meaning everywhere because it is readily available in such a large variety of foods. Like the other B vitamins, it plays a role in energy metabolism, acting as a coenzyme to energy-producing chemical reactions. It also plays a role in the synthesis of fat, hormones and neurotransmitters in the brain.

Severe deficiencies in pantothenic acid are extremely rare and generally are only seen in severe malnutrition since it is available in most foods. However, mild deficiencies can cause several health issues.

Exactly what is vitamin B5 good for, and what foods have vitamin B5? Read on!

Prevent Vitamin B Deficiency With Oats And Porridge

Vitamin B is mainly found in whole grain products! That is why a nutritious, warm breakfast with oats is the ideal start to the day! For example, you can prepare a delicious porridge and top it off with nuts. This way you get twice as much vitamin B!

You can easily do this with Overnight Oats! You can prepare them the night before and top them off with fresh fruit in the morning and your healthy breakfast is ready!

A recipe rich in vitamin B is our basic recipe for oatmeal:

Foods High In Vitamin B6

Such nutrients are known as essential vitamins.

Vitamin B6 is a water-soluble vitamin and it plays a vital role in protein metabolism, blood sugar regulation, immune function, and more .

Depending on the dietary source, vitamin B6 comes in several different forms. We can find the vitamin in plant foods as pyridoxine, and also in animal foods mainly as pyridoxal and pyridoxamine /7%3A_Vitamins/7.3%3A_Water_Soluble_Vitamins/Vitamin_B6_” rel=”nofollow”> 2).

The recommended daily value for vitamin B6 has been set at 1.7 mg per day .

This article presents 30 foods high in vitamin B6.

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Health Benefits Of Niacin

  • Protect Against Heart Disease – Niacin is prescribed pharmacologically to lower LDL fats and triglycerides by preventing the breakdown of fats into these individual components. Niacin consumed at such high levels can cause rashes, headaches, nausea, and diarrhea. Consult your doctor before taking niacin supplements in high doses.
  • Regulation of Blood Sugar and Insulin Dependence – Studies suggest that vitamin B3 can help decrease insulin sensitivity, however, other studies find no difference. Niacin has also been shown to help alleviate some of the destructive autoimmune reactions of type I diabetes, and further studies are being conducted to assess its effectiveness.
  • Reduced Cancer Risk – Studies show that niacin reduces cancer risk by ensuring DNA integrity and maintenance, and through proper regulation of the tumor suppressor gene: p53.
  • Slow the progression of AIDS – An observational study has reported slowing the progression of AIDS and increasing survival with high doses of niacin.

What Are The Symptoms And Causes Of Vitamin B Deficiency

Vitamin B3 (Niacin)

As you have already read, the B vitamins are responsible for many areas in our body. That is why various deficiency symptoms can occur. How do you recognize them? For example, a vitamin B deficiency can lead to fatigue, loss of appetite, depressive moods, insomnia and susceptibility to infections.

Our nervous system can also suffer from too little vitamin B. This can often lead to pain and sensory disorders. Further signs of an undersupply can be inflammations and changes in the skin and mucous membranes.

This sounds worse than it actually is. A vitamin deficiency is not easy to diagnose, as there are many different deficiency symptoms, but if you suspect a vitamin deficiency, you can simply have your blood values checked by a doctor! J

And what can be the cause of a vitamin deficiency? Malnutrition is the most common. Therefore, you should eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day!

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Vitamin B3 Is Known To Have Many Health Benefits Check Out The Foods Rich In This Vitamin

  • Vrinda Jain
  • Vitamins and nutrients are an essential part of our diet
  • Here we bring you 5 vitamin B3 foods
  • Read to know more

We all have often heard about how important it is to add proper vitamins and nutrients to our diet. For the same, we have even seen our mothers bring us all kinds of foods to reap the benefits of those various vitamins. While each vitamin aids our health differently, one of the essential vitamins that should be a part of your diet is vitamin B3. The vitamin has a long list of health benefits. As per research published in Research Gate, “Niacin is a B vitamin that’s made and used by your body to turn food into energy. It helps keep your nervous system, digestive system and skin healthy. This is a family of compounds that your body needs to turn food into energy and store it. It helps protect your skin and tissues too, and may improve your cholesterol levels.” It can also help regulate digestion and promote heart health, among other things. The vitamin can be found in various foods. Check out some common vitamin B3-rich foods below:

Impact Of Cooking Storage And Processing

In terms of storage, the B3 in whole natural foods tends to be relatively stable. If you store foods using the approaches we recommend in our website food profiles (in the sections entitled, “How to Select and Store,” the B3 in your foods should still be there when you are ready to consume them.

However, cooking is another matter. As a water-soluble vitamin, B3 is susceptible to leeching out of your food and into cooking water. We’ve seen a study of the boiling of meat where about twice as much B3 was lost from boiling versus pan-frying. While we are not recommending that you pan-fry meats, we view this research as consistent with the principle that a water-soluble vitamin like B3 can leech into cooking water. Our Healthy Steaming method allows you to avoid submersion of foods in water our Healthy Sauté methods allows you to use a relatively small amount of liquid, and our Quick Boil method helps you keep the time of submersion in water to a minimum. All of these methods are intended to help you reduce nutrient loss during cooking, especially loss of water-soluble nutrients like B3.

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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

Fortified And Enriched Foods

Niacin (Vitamin B3) – Foods, Benefits, and Deficiency

Many foods are fortified or enriched with niacin, transforming them from poor sources of this nutrient to good ones.

Fortified foods are supplemented with extra nutrients, while enriched foods have nutrients added back that had been lost during processing .

Many breakfast cereals and refined grain products like white bread and pasta are enriched or fortified with niacin to improve their nutrient content .

One study found that the average American gets more niacin in their diet from fortified and enriched products than from natural food sources (

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How To Take It

Generally, high doses of niacin are used to control specific diseases. Such high doses must be prescribed by a doctor who will increase the amount of niacin slowly, over the course of 4 to 6 weeks. Take niacin with meals to avoid stomach irritation.

Daily recommendations for niacin in the diet of healthy individuals are:


  • Men, 19 years and older: 16 mg
  • Women, 19 years and older: 14 mg
  • Pregnant women: 18 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 17 mg

Risk Of Dietary Toxicity

There is no known risk of dietary toxicity from naturally occurring niacin in foods. Even in the case of our most niacin-rich animal meats and fish, we are not aware of any research showing toxicity risk for B3. In keeping with this clean research bill of health, the National Academy of Sciences has not set any Tolerable Upper Intake Level for B3 when obtained from whole, natural foods. However, the NAS has set ULs for B3 in supplement form and in processed foods that have been fortified with B3. While we do not believe that fortification with B3 generally serve to increase risk of excess B3 intake, we would point out that some ready-to-eat , heavily fortified breakfast cereals can sometimes contain relatively high amounts of B3 . In the case of a young child under the age of 8 years, this amount of B3 from a fortified food could actually exceed the UL as established by the NAS. We would like to be very clear that we have seen no evidence to show that intake of B3 from fortified foods has resulted in any actual health problems. However, simply looking from the perspective of the ULs and B3 content from specific fortified products, we can see how the ULs could potentially be exceeded under certain circumstances, especially for younger age groups. Below is a complete list of ULs for vitamin B3 intake from supplements and fortified foods:

Upper Limits for Vitamin B3 From Supplements and Fortified Foods

  • 1-3 years: 10 milligrams

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What Exactly Is Vitamin B

Basically, all vitamins are essential substances that the human body cannot produce itself. Therefore, we have to absorb these substances through food.

The B vitamins are a very heterogeneous group, so they do not differ very much. And unlike vitamins A, D, E and K, the B vitamins are water-soluble and not fat-soluble. The body does not need any additional fat in order to be able to absorb the vitamin B substances.

Where To Find And How To Use

Vitamin B3: Functions, Food Sources, Deficiencies and Toxicity

With the wide array of niacin foods available, you can easily find a good variety at most grocery stores. Consuming a balanced diet full of whole foods is your best bet to increase your niacin intake and prevent a deficiency while minimizing the risk of side effects. Try incorporating a serving of protein foods into your meals or swapping in a side of foods high in B vitamins like sweet potatoes, asparagus, green peas or brown rice.

You can also combine several sources of niacin for a vitamin B-rich meal. Pair brown rice with veggies and tuna fish for a hearty grain salad, or combine sunflower seeds and peanuts with an array of other nuts and seeds to make a super nutritious homemade granola.

Because niacin has a short half-life, its important to consume niacin foods consistently in your diet to increase your intake and prevent a deficiency. Make sure you get a good amount in each day as part of a well-rounded, healthy diet to promote better health and keep niacin levels in check long term.

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Healthy Foods High In B Vitamins

There are eight B vitamins collectively called B complex vitamins.

They are thiamine , riboflavin , niacin , pantothenic acid , pyridoxine , biotin , folate and cobalamin .

Though each of these vitamins has unique functions, they generally help your body produce energy and make important molecules in your cells .

Aside from B12, your body cannot store these vitamins for long periods, so you have to replenish them regularly through food .

Many foods provide B vitamins, but to be considered high in a vitamin, a food must contain at least 20% of the Reference Daily Intake per serving. Alternatively, a food that contains 1019% of the RDI is considered a good source .

Here are 15 healthy foods high in one or more B vitamins.

How Much Do I Need

There are two forms of niacin: nicotinic acid and nicotinamide, and both are found in food. Niacin is a water-soluble vitamin, which means you need it in your diet every day because it can’t be stored in the body.

You should be able to get all the niacin you need from your daily diet. This is approximately:

  • 17 mg a day for men
  • 13 mg a day for women

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Nourishes The Digestive Tract

Asparagus contains significant amounts of the nutrient inulin, which does not break down in our digestive tract. Instead, it passes undigested to our large intestines, where it becomes a food source for good and healthy bacteria. Good bacteria are responsible for better nutrient absorption, a lower risk of allergies, and a lower risk of colon cancer.

Learn About Your Vitamins And Minerals: Vitamin B3 And Copper

Top 7 Thermo Diet Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide) Food Sources

Inspired by the Sight and Life publication Vitamins and Minerals: A Brief Guide, we continue with our Learn About Your Vitamins and Minerals series by discussing vitamin B3 and copper.

Vitamin B3

Vitamin B3, or niacin, is a water-soluble vitamin. It commonly occurs in two forms, namely nicotinic acid and nicotinamide. Vitamin B3 acts as a coenzyme, which is needed by more than 400 enzymes for various reactions in the body. It helps to convert nutrients from food into energy and plays a role in the metabolism of cholesterol and fats, the repair and synthesis of DNA, and the antioxidant reactions in the body.

Vitamin B3 is found naturally in a wide variety of both animal and plant-based foods, including beef, liver, poultry, eggs, dairy products, fish, nuts, seeds, legumes, avocados, and whole grains. It is also found in fortified cereals and bread. Vitamin B3 can also be produced in the body from the amino acid tryptophan. When tryptophan is present in amounts beyond what the body needs for protein synthesis, it is converted in the liver to vitamin B3 in the form of nicotinamide.


Animal products like oysters and shellfish, and organ meats are rich in copper. It is also naturally present in legumes, seeds and nuts, whole-grain products, dried fruits, and cocoa.

Next in this series, we discuss vitamin B5 and iodine.

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Summary Of Food Sources

Other than crimini mushrooms and asparagus, all of the excellent and some of the very good sources of B3 in our rating system are animal-derived foods. Six of these contain 50% or more of the DRI recommendation for the nutrient.

The good sources of niacin come from many different food groups. We see legumes represented. A number of vegetables, particularly root vegetables and leafy greens, also show up as good niacin sources. We also find fruits , nuts/seeds , and grains .

It is pretty easy to build a menu with a full day’s supply of B3 using a small number of the World’s Healthiest Foods. For example, you could include a recipe that includes both Green Peas and Crimini Mushrooms at lunch. At dinner, you could enjoy a recipe that features fish such as our 15-Minute Salmon with Mustard Dill Sauce. And with those two dishes, you’ve well exceeded the DRI for niacin.

Or if you’d like a more direct way to exceed your daily B3 requirement, try our Warm Spinach Salad with Tuna recipe and get more than twice the DRI from this single meal.

What Happens If I Consume Too Much Niacin

Its not possible to overdose on niacin through your diet, but you can if you take too many supplements, for example taking a multivitamin and a separate B-complex.

Too much nicotinic acid can cause itching or flushing skin, and, over time, may lead to liver damage.

Theres not enough research to show what happens if you take too much nicotinamide.16

The NHS says taking less than 17mg of nicotinic acid, or less than 500mg of nicotinamide, a day is not likely to cause any harm.17

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Why You Need Niacin

Niacin is associated with many health benefits, including lowering cholesterol, protecting against Alzheimers disease, and aiding in diabetes management. The main function of this nutrient is to prevent pellegra, which is niacin deficiency. In addition, it produces NAD+ which is vital for cellular pathways including deriving energy from carbohydrates, protein, and fat.

As A Dietary Supplement

Vitamin b3

In the United States, niacin is sold as a non-prescription dietary supplement with a range of 100 to 1000 mg per serving. These products often have a Structure/Function health claim allowed by the US Food & Drug Administration . An example would be “Supports a healthy blood lipid profile.” The American Heart Association strongly advises against the substitution of dietary supplement niacin for prescription niacin because of potentially serious side effects, which means that niacin should only be used under the supervision of a health care professional, and because manufacture of dietary supplement niacin is not as well-regulated by the FDA as prescription niacin. More than 30 mg niacin consumed as a dietary supplement can cause skin flushing. Face, arms and chest skin turns a reddish color because of vasodilation of small subcutaneous blood vessels, accompanied by sensations of heat, tingling and itching. These signs and symptoms are typically transient, lasting minutes to hours they are considered unpleasant rather than toxic.

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