Vitamin B3 (Niacin, Niacinamide, Nicotinic Acid, Nicotinamide)12 years, 9 months ago
Posted on Dec 30, 2005, 8 p.m.
By Bill Freeman
GENERAL DESCRIPTION: Found in lean meats, organ meats, fish, brewer
Found in lean meats, organ meats, fish, brewer’s yeast, whole grains, nuts, dried peas and beans, white meat of turkey or chicken, milk and milk products. Vitamin B3 can also be synthesised by the body from the essential amino acid tryptophan.
ROLE IN ANTI-AGING:
Vitamin B3 is vital for energy release in tissues and cells, as it helps form the coenzymes NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) and NADP (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate), which are involved in the release of energy from food. The vitamin also helps to maintain a healthy nervous and digestive system and is essential for normal growth and for healthy skin. It can also help to lower "bad" cholesterol and triglyceride levels, while raising "good" HDL cholesterol levels. Vitamin B3 also plays a role in the production of bile salts and the synthesis of sex hormones. Some studies have also suggested that the vitamin may help to alleviate the symptoms of arthritis. Note: claims that vitamin B3 prevents heart attack have not been clinically proven.
Vitamin B3 deficiency can cause the condition pellagra (symptoms include dermatitis, diarrhea, and dementia). Other symptoms of deficiency are bright red tongue, sore tongue and gums, inflamed mouth, throat and esophagus, canker sores, mental illness, perceptual changes in the five senses, schizophrenic symptoms, rheumatoid arthritis, muscle weakness, general fatigue, irritability, recurring headaches, indigestion, nausea, vomiting, bad breath, insomnia, and small ulcers.
THERAPEUTIC DAILY AMOUNT:
50-100mg of niacinamide included in daily Bcomplex supplement. To lower cholesterol, researchers use the niacin form, 250-1,500mg spread throughout the day. RDA is 16mg for men and 14mg for women. The European RDA is 18mg.
MAXIMUM SAFE LEVEL:
Nicotinamide &emdash; 450mg (long-term); 1500 mg (short-term) Nicotinic acid &emdash; 150mg (longterm); 500mg (short-term). Note: Dose of nicotinic acid in excess of these levels may cause temporary flushing of the skin in some individuals.
People with bleeding problems, diabetes mellitus, glaucoma, gout, liver disease, low blood pressure or stomach ulcers should consult their doctor before taking vitamin B3 supplements, as the vitamin may worsen their condition.