Is Niacin a double-edged sword...

30 years ago, I had high cholesterol levels and told by my family doctor to take niacin supplements that will elevate my metabolism and help reduce cholesterol naturally. I did and soon after started feeling joint pain, so I stopped taking supplements and the pains went away.

4 years ago, I started up with a cardiologist and she said my cholesterol was 'in range' but a little high, so I started taking 500mg of niacin daily and noticed joint pain again.

Researching the research always finds difference in how much niacin (aka vitamin B3) is necessary. Since many foods are rich in niacin and it's added to cereals and flour, the need for supplements may not be necessary. I found one statement from the Mayo Clinic, 16mg is the recommended daily amount. (so why does it come in 500mg strength?)

I'm finding a contradiction as some sites claim niacin reduces inflammation, yet another site claims 'in a new report' it may raise the risk of heart disease by triggering inflammation and damaging blood vessels. However, according to one story:

The researchers currently don’t know where to draw the line between healthy and unhealthy amounts of niacin, although that may be determined with future research.

"The average person should avoid niacin supplements now that we have reason to believe that taking too much niacin can potentially lead to an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease”

I read that niacin taken to reduce heart disease has been found to cause it.

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Comments (9)

In 50 years time, a lot of what we know and think we know will be rewritten. Science is always evolving and learning and lots of times we come to find out that something we thought was good is not good.

Some people turn away from science because the message sometimes changes. What they dont realize is that science doest change its message because it was lying to you. It changes its message because it learned more. Always evolving.
It is rumored pharmaceutical companies own a great deal of media which subsequently can get correct and intentional questionable out to the masses.
@ OP

your professional medical guidance is odd and different from what my cardiologists instructed me to do. I was given prescriptions for Niacin to Improve my low Good cholesterol. Taking prescription strength Niacin neither improved my good Cholesterol nor lowered my bad cholesterol.
Prescription for over the counter vitamins?
I suggest you scrutinize your medical professionals as close or more closely than you do media outlets.
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I was prescribed vitamin D some time ago, and whilst I acknowledge I was moderately to severely deficient post-lockdown illness and isolation, I didn't much appreciate the remedy.

It was to the point where I was wondering why people snort illegal, addictive and expensive stimulants when they can just pop down to their local Holland & Barrett for a packet of gummies.

You know the way horses instinctively nibble the herbs they need from the hedgerow? I reckon when I crave a plate of peas several days in a row and woe betide anyone who stands between me and the petite pois, there's probably good reason for it.

If I can't handle a few crumbs grated off a supplement without experiencing insomnia, or some other side effect for three days afterwards, there's probably a reason for that, too.

It's perhaps worth noting that whilst we have something of a B12 deficiency epidemic here in Wales, I'm not one of them despite my plant based diet.
Prescription for higher dose niacin was the economical way to go for me because my prescription insurance paid for it.

Interesting, I've had only the best of the best in the heart health field at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center Richard M. Ross Heart Hospital.

Niacin has long been used to lower triglycerides and to increase high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. This "good" cholesterol helps remove low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, the "bad" cholesterol, from the bloodstream.
I take a med which help reduce stomach acid. Consequently this acid reducer also lessons the ability of our biological systems to absorb B12. The remedy for this unwanted side effect here is simple, we just buy and consume B12 supplements found on Amazon or elsewhere.
Did you follow the link I provided in my blog?

Google '4PY' and you will see that new research shows people who take too much niacin may increase their risk of cardiovascular disease.

Blog topic: Is Niacin a double-edged sword
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