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Vitamin B3 Benefits, Deficiency Symptoms, Food Sources, Toxicity and Upper Limits

Introduction to Vitamin B3

Vitamin B3 is also called Niacin. Niacin is a general term used to refer to two different active forms of Vitamin B3 known as Nicotinic Acid and Nicotinamide. This is water soluble vitamin and is required for energy production. It needs to be provided to the body on daily basis as it is excreted with the urine.

Benefits of Vitamin B3 (Niacin, Nicotinamide, Nicotinic Acid)

  • Required to convert carbohydrates, proteins, and fat to energy
  • Needed to synthesize fat and carbohydrates
  • Keeps skin cells healthy
  • Supports digestive system to work properly
  • Lowers total cholesterol from the body
  • Reduces LDL (Bad cholesterol) and increases HDL (Good cholesterol)

Vitamin B3 Deficiency Symptoms

  • Can cause a disease known as Pellagra
  • Causes dermatitis
  • Causes Dementia
  • Inflammation and irritation of the skin

Daily Vitamin B3 Requirements

  • Men 19 to 50 years – 16 mg
  • Women 19 to 50 years – 14 mg

Vitamin B3 Upper Limits

  • The upper limits of Vitamin B3 (Niacin) are set to 35 mg. However, upper limit of one of its active form known as Nicotinamide is much higher.

Vitamin B3 Toxicity

Over-consumption might cause flushing and radish coloring on the face, arms and chest. Too much of this vitamin can also cause nausea and vomiting.

Vitamin B3 Sources

  • Pasta (spaghetti), enriched, cooked, 1/2 cup – 1.2 mg
  • Rice, brown, cooked, 1 cup – 3.0 mg
  • Cheerios, 1 cup – 5.8 mg
  • Peppers, raw, 1 cup – 0.7 mg
  • Potatoes, mashed, 1/2 cup – 1.1 mg
  • Sweet potato, baked in skin, 1 – 2.1 mg
  • Corn, canned, 1 cup – 2.5 mg
  • Peanuts, dry roasted, 1/2 oz – 1.9 mg
  • Turkey, light meat, roasted, 3 oz – 5.6 mg
  • Sirloin steak, lean, broiled, 3 oz – 6.6 mg
  • Salmon, cooked, 3 oz – 7.2 mg
  • Tuna fish, light, canned in water, 3 oz – 11. 3 mg
  • Chicken breast, skinless, roasted, 3 oz – 11.7 mg

3 thoughts on “Vitamin B3 Benefits, Deficiency Symptoms, Food Sources, Toxicity and Upper Limits

  1. Frank

    Vitamin B3 helps me with my digestion. In fact, I take vitamin B-complex containing all B vitamins to make sure I get plenty of them as they are water soluble and we need them on regular basis.

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