Vitamin B3 is also popularly known as Niacin. It is a very important nutrient as every part of the body needs it to function properly. Vitamin B3 or Niacin is primarily used to lower high cholesterol levels in the body. It is also used to treat respiratory or vascular disorders. Foods such as fish, nuts and chicken are good sources of this vitamin. It aids in good blood circulation, normal functioning of the brain and boosting memory. It is important to consume appropriate portions of this vitamin as an over dose might cause adverse affects to your health. Vitamin B3 or Niacin is a water-soluble vitamin that can travel through the human blood stream and thus the body has the option to discharge excess vitamins in form of urine. Therefore, such vitamins can be taken through both food and liquid items, since our body does need a constant supply. According to Delhi-based Nutritionist Dr. Simran Saini, "The prime benefit of Vitamin B3 is that it keeps your bones stronger by helping in the retention of calcium."
Here are seven important benefits of Vitamin B3 or Niacin and why you should have enough of it.
1. Regulated digestion
Vitamin B3 helps in the normal functioning of the human digestive system which in turn promotes a healthy appetite and glowing skin. This vitamin is important for many digestive tract functions, which includes the breakdown of fats, carbohydrates and alcohol. Loading up on niacin or vitamin B3 can be super-helpful and how!
(Also read: 3 Simple Yoga Poses After Dinner That Can Boost Digestion)
Health benefits of niacin: Vitamin B3 helps in the normal functioning of the human digestive system
2. Treats pellagra
People suffering from weak muscles, digestive problems, skin infections or pellagra mark a severe vitamin B3 deficiency. Pellagra is a disease caused by lack of the vitamin B3 in the body. These people need to incorporate an increased dosage of vitamin B3 though their diet or supplements as a part of their treatment. It is very important to consume more niacin rich food in order to avoid such a condition that may only worsen with time.
3. Improves skin
Vitamin B3 or Niacin helps in protecting the skin from sun damage. It is often used in cosmetics and creams used for anti-ageing. It is known to reverse sun damage and discoloration that may occur due to ageing. This multi-tasking vitamin helps heal wounds, strengthens the skin and stimulate its power to retain moisture.
(Also read: 5 Anti-Ageing Tips)
Health benefits of niacin: Vitamin B3 or Niacin helps in protecting the skin from sun damage
4. Reduces the symptoms of Arthritis
Vitamin B3 or Niacin helps in easing the symptoms of osteoarthritis. It improves joint mobility and prevents inflammation caused by arthritis. Its non-inflammatory properties help ease arthritis and boost brain function, among other benefits. Make sure you don't consume large doses of niacin as it may only reverse the good effects.
(Also read: 7 Best Anti-Inflammatory Foods You Must Add to Your Diet)
Health benefits of niacin: Vitamin B3 or Niacin helps in easing the symptoms of osteoarthritis
5. Prevents the risk of heart disease
This vitamin helps in managing the cholesterol levels in your body which further reduces the risk of heart disease. It also curbs oxidative stress and inflammation which can prove to be harmful for the heart as they tend to harden the arteries and obstruct blood flow. Niacin is known to dilate the blood vessels and improve blood flow.
(Also read: 9 Common Causes of a Heart Attack)
Health benefits of niacin: This vitamin helps in managing the cholesterol levels in your body
6. Mental health
Vitamin B3 or Niacin supplements are often used to treat most disorders like anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder. People with depression are usually found to be deficient in Vitamin B. Moreover, low levels of neurotransmitter serotonin often leads to depression. Serotonin requires amino acid tryptophan which is actually made with the help of Vitamin B3 or Niacin.
(Also read: 25 Signs of Depression in Teenagers)
Niacin is helps in treating diabetes and high blood sugar levels. Most diabetic patients are able to effectively control HBA1C levels and benefit with the help of niacin. Niacin is not only helpful at reducing total cholesterol, LDL, triglycerides, but also is safe for diabetics, of course under supervision.
As per the Food Nutrition Board of the United States, adults over the age of 18 years require about 14-18 milligrams niacin daily.
The opinions expressed within this article are the personal opinions of the author. NDTV is not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of any information on this article. All information is provided on an as-is basis. The information, facts or opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of NDTV and NDTV does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.