What is Niacin? It is a B-complex vitamin which was discovered in 1937 by Conrad Elvenhjem who followed up on previous research into a dietary cure for the disease pellagra and managed to isolate B3 as the cure? The main function of this vitamin is to help the body break down carbohydrates, fats and proteins into an energy source it can use. However, it does a lot more than this. Things you should know about vitamin B3.
It helps prevent heart disease: – Vitamin B3 lowers blood levels of triglycerides and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. It also increases blood levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. While triglycerides and LDL cholesterol are not bad in themselves increased blood levels of these two fats often increases your heart disease risk. High levels of HDL cholesterol also help lower your blood levels of LDL cholesterol. Therefore, by regulating the levels of these fats in your blood niacin helps reduce your chances of suffering from heart disease. Niacin is particularly useful because it helps to widen the arteries which lead to better circulation of blood. This vitamin also lowers the body’s bad cholesterol levels and prevents plaque from forming and building up along the artery walls thereby preventing heart attacks.
An adequate supply of Vitamin B3 is essential for healthy skin. It is also required to produce various hormones like Progesterone and Testosterone and plays a major role in the proper functioning of the nervous system, digestive tract and maintaining overall mental health.
It is a water soluble vitamin: – Water soluble vitamins (as the name suggests) are a group of vitamins that dissolve in water.it is quite delicate and because of this extra care has to be taken when preparing foods that contain vitamin B3. Intense heat, light and boiling water can all destroy this vitamin. Also, water-soluble vitamins cannot be stored by the body, so it is important that you get the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of niacin each day which is 15mg for both men and women.
Not getting enough can cause pellagra: – Not getting enough of this vital vitamin can ultimately lead to a condition called pellagra. This is a disease which makes your skin red and rough. It can also make you feel weak and reduces your appetite significantly. If left untreated Pellagra causes the four Ds; diarrhea, dementia, delirium, and death. Although contracting pellagra is rare, this is another good reason for making sure that you get your RDA of vitamin B3.
It can be found in multiple foods: – Niacin can be sourced from a variety of foods. Foods that are high in protein are your best choice with meat, eggs, and peanuts all containing good levels of this vitamin. Certain vegetables also contain high levels of vitamin B3 including greens and mushrooms. Therefore, if you do not currently eat any of the above foods regularly try adding one or two of them to your diet.
The recommended daily intake of Vitamin B3 is between 15 to 19 mg for adult men and around 15 mg for adult women. Pregnant or breastfeeding women need a slightly higher amount. Recntly you can find niacin for bodybuilders and other athletes formulated as a thin disolvin strip that helps to absorb niacin quickly into the bloodstream. Some people might experience a red flushness of the skin after consuming niacin. If this occurs, one should slow the intake of this vitamin and allow the body to get used to it