Canadian Medical Guide > Vitamins & Mineral Food Supplement Guide

Vitamin B3 (Niacin)

Vitamin / Mineral Supplement Overview:
Vitamin B-3, otherwise known as niacin, acts like other B vitamins to create enzymes that are essential to metabolic cell activity, synthesize hormones, repair genetic material, and maintain normal functioning of the nervous system. Great sources of this vitamin may be found in meat, fish, and whole grains.

How Vitamin B3 (Niacin) Works in the Body:
May treat pellagra
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) decreases cholesterol and triglycerides in blood
Large doses dilate blood vessels
Handles ear ringing and dizziness
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) is essential for genetic material repair
Potential reduction in heart attacks, depression, and migraine headaches
Poor digestion could be improved

The following may benefit from Vitamin B3 (Niacin) supplements:
Anyone with poor dietary intake
Pregnant or breastfeeding women
Substance abusers
Severe burn or injury patients
Infants with congenital metabolic disorders

Foods high in Vitamin B3 (Niacin):
Beef liver
Brewer's yeast
Chicken, white meat
Dried beans/peas
Fortified cereals
Peanut butter

Using Vitamin B3 (Niacin):
Available as:
Liquid: the best form due to its high bioavailability and fast absorption. Always choose liquid as your first choice when supplementing your diet.

Tablets: available

Recommended Vitamin B3 (Niacin) Daily Intakes
Men: 16 mg
Women: 14 mg
Pregnancy: 18 mg
Lactation: 17 mg

Medical Precautions: Consult your doctor if you have:
Gallbladder or liver disease
Arterial bleeding

Over 55:
Individualized doses recommended.

Do not use. Fetus may be at risk.

Always consult doctor during lactation. Keep within DRI.

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) Supplement Storage:
Heat and/or moisture may alter the vitamin. Refrigeration is recommended.

Symptoms of Deficiency:
Symptoms include dermatitis on the hands and face, weakness, loss of appetite, sore mouth, Diarrhoea, anxiety, depression, and dementia.

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) Overdose:
Signs of Overdose:
Signs of an overdose may include body flush, nausea, Diarrhoea, weakness, light-headedness, headache, fainting, high blood sugar, high uric acid, heart-rhythm disturbances, and jaundice.

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) Side Effects:
Reaction or effect : What to do
Abdominal pain : Discontinue. Consult doctor immediately.
Urine Darkening : No action needed.
Diarrhoea : Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Headache : Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Faintness : Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Feeling hot : No action needed.
Jaundice : Discontinue. Consult doctor immediately.
Dry Skin : Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.

Interacts with : Combined effect
Anti-diabetics : Reduction in anti-diabetic effect.
Beta-adrenergic blockers : Incredibly low blood pressures.
Chenodiol : Reduction in chenodiol effect.
Guanethidine : Raises guanethidine effect.
Isoniazid : Reduction in niacin effect.
Mecamylamine : Incredible reduction in blood pressure.
Pargyline : Incredible reduction in blood pressure.
Ursodiol : Reduction in ursodiol effect.
Tobacco : Reduction in niacin effect.
Alcohol : Incredible reduction in blood pressure.


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