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What Does Nicotinic Acid Do?

Mark Halsey
Chief Editor of - Cleanbreak Recovery

Mark Halsey is a licensed therapist, founder, and chief editor of Clean Break Recovery. With over a decade of addiction treatment experience, Mark deeply understands...Read more

Nicotinic acid, otherwise known as niacin, is a powerful vitamin and antioxidant that is essential for our body’s overall health and wellbeing. This B vitamin plays a role in many of our body’s processes, from energy production to DNA repair. In this article, we will explore what nicotinic acid does, how it works, and why it is important for our health. So, if you are interested in learning more about this essential vitamin and its benefits, read on!

What Does Nicotinic Acid Do?

What is Nicotinic Acid And Its Uses?

Nicotinic acid is a form of vitamin B3, also known as niacin, which is essential for the body’s growth and development. It is present in many foods, including meat, fish, and fortified cereals. It plays an important role in metabolism, including the production of energy, and helps maintain healthy skin, hair, and eyes. Nicotinic acid is also used to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood.

Nicotinic acid is available as a dietary supplement and as a prescription medication. It is available in tablet, capsule, and sustained-release forms. The extended-release forms are used to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Nicotinic acid is also used to reduce the risk of stroke in people with coronary artery disease.

Benefits of Nicotinic Acid

Nicotinic acid helps the body break down carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, which are essential for the production of energy. It also helps the body produce hormones and enzymes, which are important for healthy organs and tissues. Nicotinic acid helps maintain healthy skin, hair, and eyes and is important for nerve health.

Nicotinic acid is most commonly used to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood. It works by increasing the activity of enzymes that break down fats, which helps reduce the amount of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood. Nicotinic acid also increases the production of HDL (good) cholesterol, which helps reduce the risk of stroke in people with coronary artery disease.

Side Effects of Nicotinic Acid

The most common side effects of nicotinic acid are flushing and itching. This can be reduced by taking the medication with food or a glass of water. Other side effects include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, and diarrhea. More serious side effects include liver problems, elevated blood sugar levels, and an increased risk of gout.

Dosage and Administration of Nicotinic Acid

Nicotinic acid is available as a dietary supplement and as a prescription medication. The dosage and frequency of administration depend on the condition being treated and the form of the medication. It is important to follow the instructions on the package or from your doctor or pharmacist.

Precautions When Taking Nicotinic Acid

People with kidney or liver disease, diabetes, gout, or a history of stroke should talk to their doctor before taking nicotinic acid. People with stomach ulcers or bleeding should also talk to their doctor before taking nicotinic acid.

It is important to tell your doctor or pharmacist about all medications you are taking, including vitamins, minerals, and herbal supplements, as they can interact with nicotinic acid. It is also important to talk to your doctor before taking nicotinic acid if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Interactions of Nicotinic Acid with Other Drugs

Nicotinic acid may interact with other medications, including cholesterol-lowering medications, anticoagulants (blood thinners), and certain antibiotics. It also interacts with some medications used to treat HIV, such as ritonavir and atazanavir.

Cholesterol-Lowering Medications

Nicotinic acid may increase the risk of side effects when taken with certain cholesterol-lowering medications, such as statins. It is important to talk to your doctor before taking nicotinic acid if you are taking a cholesterol-lowering medication.

Anticoagulants

Nicotinic acid may increase the risk of bleeding when taken with anticoagulants, such as warfarin. It is important to talk to your doctor before taking nicotinic acid if you are taking an anticoagulant.

Conclusion

Nicotinic acid is a form of vitamin B3 that is essential for the body’s growth and development. It plays an important role in metabolism, including the production of energy, and helps maintain healthy skin, hair, and eyes. Nicotinic acid is most commonly used to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood. It is available as a dietary supplement and as a prescription medication. Side effects of nicotinic acid include flushing, itching, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, and diarrhea. Nicotinic acid may interact with other medications, including cholesterol-lowering medications, anticoagulants, and certain antibiotics. It is important to talk to your doctor before taking nicotinic acid.

Few Frequently Asked Questions

What is Nicotinic Acid?

Nicotinic acid, also known as niacin, is a water-soluble vitamin found in many foods, such as meats, fish, eggs, milk, and green vegetables. It is a vitamin of the B-complex family and is essential for energy production and the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Niacin is also important for the health of the skin and the nervous system.

What are the Benefits of Nicotinic Acid?

The primary benefit of nicotinic acid is that it helps the body to produce energy from carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. It also helps the body to produce hormones and helps to improve circulation. Niacin may help to reduce cholesterol levels, prevent heart disease, and reduce the risk of stroke. It may also help to reduce inflammation and relieve symptoms of arthritis. Additionally, niacin has been found to be beneficial in the treatment of depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia.

What are the Side Effects of Nicotinic Acid?

Side effects of nicotinic acid may include skin flushing, itching, nausea, and stomach upset. High doses of niacin can also cause liver damage. Other more serious side effects may include an increased risk of bleeding, heart palpitations, and an increased risk of stroke. It is important to talk to your doctor before taking nicotinic acid or any other supplement.

What Forms Does Nicotinic Acid Come In?

Nicotinic acid is available in several forms, including tablets, capsules, liquids, and powders. It is also available as an injectable form. Nicotinic acid is also found in many over-the-counter and prescription medications, such as statins and fibrates.

How Much Nicotinic Acid Should I Take?

The recommended daily allowance of niacin for adults is 14-16mg per day. However, the amount of niacin needed will vary depending on age, gender, and health status. It is important to talk to your doctor to determine the correct dosage for you.

What Foods Contain Nicotinic Acid?

Nicotinic acid can be found in a variety of foods, including meats, fish, eggs, milk, and green vegetables. Other sources of niacin include nuts, whole grains, fortified cereals, and some fruits and vegetables. It is also available as a supplement.

How does Niacin (B3) Work? (+ Pharmacology)

Nicotinic acid, also known as niacin or vitamin B3, is a vitamin essential for maintaining healthy metabolism, skin and nerves. It is also important for converting food into energy and helps the body absorb fat-soluble vitamins. All in all, it is an essential nutrient for optimal health and wellbeing. With its many benefits, it is no wonder nicotinic acid is an important part of any healthy diet. So, if you’re looking to improve your overall health, consider adding nicotinic acid to your daily routine and reap the benefits it has to offer.

Mark Halsey is a licensed therapist, founder, and chief editor of Clean Break Recovery. With over a decade of addiction treatment experience, Mark deeply understands the complex needs of those struggling with addiction and utilizes a comprehensive and holistic approach to address them. He is well-versed in traditional and innovative therapies, including cognitive-behavioral therapy, motivational interviewing, and mindfulness-based interventions.

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