This can be a reader-friendly overview of Niacin. For extra particulars, see our well being skilled reality sheet on Niacin.
What’s niacin and what does it do?
Niacin (additionally known as vitamin B3) helps flip the meals you eat into the vitality you want. Niacin is essential for the event and performance of the cells in your physique.
How a lot niacin do I would like?
The quantity of niacin you want will depend on your age and intercourse. Common every day beneficial quantities are listed under in milligrams (mg) of niacin equivalents (NE) (apart from infants of their first 6 months).
The mg NE measure is used as a result of your physique also can make niacin from tryptophan, an amino acid in proteins. For instance, whenever you eat turkey, which is excessive in tryptophan, a few of this amino acid is transformed to niacin in your liver. Utilizing mg NE accounts for each the niacin you devour and the niacin your physique makes from tryptophan. Infants of their first six months don’t make a lot niacin from tryptophan.
|Life Stage||Really useful Quantity|
|Beginning to six months||2 mg|
|Infants 7–12 months||4 mg NE|
|Youngsters 1–3 years||6 mg NE|
|Youngsters 4–8 years||8 mg NE|
|Youngsters 9–13 years||12 mg NE|
|Teen boys 14–18 years||16 mg NE|
|Teen ladies 14–18 years||14 mg NE|
|Grownup males 19+ years||16 mg NE|
|Grownup ladies 19+ years||14 mg NE|
|Pregnant teenagers and ladies||18 mg NE|
|Breastfeeding teenagers and ladies||17 mg NE|
What meals present niacin?
Niacin is discovered naturally in lots of meals, and is added to some meals. You will get beneficial quantities of niacin by consuming a wide range of meals, together with the next:
- Animal meals, equivalent to poultry, beef, pork, and fish
- Some varieties of nuts, legumes, and grains
- Enriched and fortified meals, equivalent to many breads and cereals
What sorts of niacin dietary dietary supplements can be found?
Niacin is present in multivitamin/multimineral dietary supplements. It is usually out there in B-complex dietary dietary supplements and dietary supplements containing solely niacin. The 2 essential types of niacin in dietary dietary supplements are nicotinic acid and nicotinamide.
Niacin (within the type of nicotinic acid) can be out there as a prescription drugs used to deal with excessive blood levels of cholesterol.
Am I getting sufficient niacin?
Most individuals in the USA get sufficient niacin from the meals they eat. Niacin deficiency may be very uncommon in the USA. Nevertheless, some persons are extra probably than others to have bother getting sufficient niacin:
What occurs if I don’t get sufficient niacin?
You’ll be able to develop niacin deficiency if you aren’t getting sufficient niacin or tryptophan from the meals you eat. Extreme niacin deficiency results in a illness known as pellagra. Pellagra, which is unusual in developed international locations, can have these results:
- Tough pores and skin that turns crimson or brown within the solar
- A vibrant crimson tongue
- Vomiting, constipation, or diarrhea
- Excessive tiredness
- Aggressive, paranoid, or suicidal habits
- Hallucinations, apathy, lack of reminiscence
In its ultimate phases, pellagra results in lack of urge for food adopted by loss of life.
What are some results of niacin on well being?
Scientists are finding out niacin to raised perceive the way it impacts well being. Right here is an instance of what this analysis has proven.
Scientists have studied the usage of giant doses of niacin within the type of nicotinic acid to assist cut back the chance of coronary heart assault and stroke in individuals with atherosclerosis. They discovered that prescription-strength nicotinic acid (greater than 100 occasions the beneficial dietary allowance) can decrease blood ranges of LDL (unhealthy) ldl cholesterol, increase ranges of HDL (good) ldl cholesterol, and decrease ranges of triglycerides. However these favorable results on blood lipids (fat) don’t have an effect on the chance of getting a cardiovascular occasion, equivalent to coronary heart assault, sudden cardiac loss of life, or stroke. As well as, specialists don’t advocate excessive doses of nicotinic acid for individuals taking a statin treatment.
Your healthcare supplier ought to approve and supervise any use of very excessive doses of nicotinic acid (within the hundreds of milligrams) to deal with atherosclerosis.
Can niacin be dangerous?
The niacin that meals and drinks naturally comprise is protected. Nevertheless, dietary dietary supplements with 30 mg or extra of nicotinic acid could make the pores and skin in your face, arms, and chest flip crimson and burn, tingle, and itch. These signs also can result in complications, rashes, and dizziness.
Should you take nicotinic acid as a medicine in doses of 1,000 or extra mg/day, it could trigger extra extreme unwanted effects. These embrace:
- Low blood stress (which might improve the chance of falls)
- Excessive tiredness
- Excessive blood sugar ranges
- Nausea, heartburn, and belly ache
- Blurred or impaired imaginative and prescient and fluid buildup within the eyes
Lengthy-term remedy, particularly with extended-release types of nicotinic acid, could cause liver issues, together with hepatitis and liver failure.
Niacin within the type of nicotinamide has fewer unwanted effects than nicotinic acid. Nevertheless, at excessive doses of 500 mg/day or extra, nicotinamide could cause diarrhea, simple bruising, and might improve bleeding from wounds. Even larger doses of three,000 mg/day or extra could cause nausea, vomiting, and liver harm.
The every day higher limits for niacin from dietary dietary supplements are listed under.
|Beginning to 12 months||Not established|
|Youngsters 1–3 years||10 mg|
|Youngsters 4–8 years||15 mg|
|Youngsters 9–13 years||20 mg|
|Teenagers 14–18 years||30 mg|
|Adults 19+ years||35 mg|
Does niacin work together with drugs or different dietary dietary supplements?
Niacin dietary dietary supplements can work together or intrude with sure medicines that you simply take, and a few medicines can decrease niacin ranges in your physique. Listed here are some examples:
- Tuberculosis medicine (equivalent to isoniazid and pyrazinamide) intrude with the physique’s capacity to transform tryptophan to niacin. This interference can decrease niacin ranges in your physique.
- Excessive doses of nicotinic acid (1,500 mg/day or extra) can increase blood sugar ranges and intrude with the effectiveness of diabetes drugs. These doses may even increase blood sugar ranges in individuals who don’t have diabetes.
Inform your physician, pharmacist, and different healthcare suppliers about any dietary dietary supplements and prescription or over-the-counter medicines you’re taking. They’ll inform you if the dietary dietary supplements may work together together with your medicines. They’ll additionally inform you if the medicines may intrude with how your physique absorbs, makes use of, or breaks down niacin and different vitamins.
Niacin and healthful consuming
Individuals ought to get most of their vitamins from meals and drinks, in keeping with the federal authorities’s Dietary Pointers for People. Meals comprise nutritional vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, and different elements that profit well being. In some circumstances, fortified meals and dietary dietary supplements are helpful when it isn’t attainable to fulfill wants for a number of vitamins (e.g., throughout particular life phases equivalent to being pregnant). For extra details about constructing a wholesome dietary sample, see the Dietary Pointers for People and the U.S. Division of Agriculture’s MyPlate.
The place can I discover out extra about niacin?
- For common data on niacin:
- For extra data on meals sources of niacin:
- For extra recommendation on selecting dietary dietary supplements:
- For details about constructing a wholesome dietary sample:
This reality sheet by the Workplace of Dietary Dietary supplements (ODS) gives data that ought to not take the place of medical recommendation. We encourage you to speak to your healthcare suppliers (physician, registered dietitian, pharmacist, and so on.) about your curiosity in, questions on, or use of dietary dietary supplements and what could also be finest in your total well being. Any point out on this publication of a selected services or products, or suggestion from a company or skilled society, doesn’t signify an endorsement by ODS of that product, service, or skilled recommendation.
Up to date: March 22, 2021 Historical past of modifications to this reality sheet