Vitamin B3 – Benefits, Foods and Dosage
A part of the vitamin B complex, niacin also referred to as vitamin B3 is one of the more important water-soluble vitamin found and has been known for balancing blood cholesterol levels along with maintaining a healthy metabolism. Higher amounts of niacin in the body have also proven to lower cardiovascular risks by lowering cholesterol levels.
Recommended Dosage Of Vitamin B3 – Niacin
In order for the body to keep functioning at its best, intake of niacin is extremely important. That can be in the form of either food or supplements – each will provide you with benefits that are needed to keep the body functioning. But how do you know just how much niacin to take?
The question here is how much is too much? The recommended intake for vitamin b3 varies and depends on age coupled with different factors.
- Children – depending on age between 2-16 milligrams
- Women – 14 milligrams
- Men – 16 milligrams
- Women during pregnancy – 18 milligrams
- Women (breastfeeding) – 17 milligrams
The maximum daily dosage of niacin that is recommended for adults should not exceed 35 milligrams a day.
Niacin Food Sources
If taking supplements is not something that you feel comfortable with, then there are certain foods that you can eat to ensure that you are getting the recommended intake. Foods found to be rich in vitamin b3 consists of the following:
- Chicken breast
- Beef liver
- Split green peas
- Sunflower seeds
- Grass fed beef
Benefits of Niacin
Vitamins and minerals are essential for our body to keep functioning at its peak. Not only has it been known to improve overall cardiovascular health but there are a number of other benefits that you get from it.
Following are the benefits that you can reap from regular intake of niacin.
- Niacin has been known to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease
- Niacin has been shown to treat diabetes
- Regular intake of niacin has shown improved cholesterol levels
- It also helps in maintaining skin health
- Helps reducing stiffness of joints due to arthritis
- Niacin has been shown to aid in the functioning of the brain
- Niacin when taken during pregnancy can help on preventing birth defects
- Prevents erectile dysfunction in men (impotence)
- Helps in the treatment of Pellagra – a disease that is caused due to low levels of vitamin B in the body
Side Effects Of Niacin
Most people tend to suffer from side effects that are a direct result of taking niacin supplements. The most common side effects experienced by people due to intake of this vitamin are listed below.
- Nausea or vomiting
- Heart problems – may cause irregular heartbeat
- Skin irritation, reaction and rashes
- Allergic reaction
- Can increase blood sugar
- Liver disease symptoms
- May worsen gallbladder
- Can cause low blood pressure
- Stomach/intestinal ulcers
When taking niacin, it is recommended to follow carefully the instructions that are given from the doctor to avoid any side effects.