Vitamin B3, also known as niacin, is a food supplement with tremendous health benefits when taken in prescribed quantities. Vitamin B3 is one of the constituents of the multivitamin B-complex.
The top five health benefits of vitamin B3 are as follows:
- The primary health benefit of vitamin B3 is a significant decrease in heart disease.
- It helps lower the level of bad cholesterol.
- Studies have shown that a key health benefit of vitamin B3 is the elevation of good (HDL) cholesterol levels. However, sufficient quantities of the vitamin must be ingested for the required benefits.
- Other health benefits of vitamin B3 include a reduction in the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, cataracts, osteoarthritis, and type-1 diabetes.
- Scientific studies have shown that vitamin B3 assists in the energy production of cells. It is beneficial for a healthy nervous system and a well-functioning digestive system. The minimum amount of vitamin B3 required for healthy living varies with age. Children require 2-16 mg of vitamin B3, while pregnant women require 18 mg of the vitamin.
Intake of vitamin B3 can sometimes cause an stomach upset. It is advisable to take the vitamin with food. Vitamin B3 can cause harmless flushing when used for the first time. The benefits of vitamin B3 can be offset by liver problems, muscle damage, low blood pressure, and changes in heart rhythm during the intake of a high dose. The benefits of vitamin B3 far outweigh the possible negative effects, when taken under medical supervision.
Vitamin B3 is a naturally occurring substance found in meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and green vegetables. Vitamin B3 deficiency may cause pellagra, a disorder of the digestive and nervous system.
The benefits of vitamins B3 can be obtained by consuming small amounts based on recommended dietary intake. One should eat enough fruits, vegetables, and other healthy food. Since most adults do not eat these kinds of food, the National Academies of Science (NAS) recommends that adults over the age of 50 take vitamin B supplements to prevent possible deficiencies.
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