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I am confused about the difference between niacin and niacinamide. Can you explain?



Niacin, one of the B vitamins, is converted in the body to niacinamide, a close chemical relative with similar vitamin activity. Many vitamin formulations use niacinamide instead of niacin  and that’s fine. To make things a bit confusing, however, the term nicotinamide—a synonym for niacinamide—is more commonly used.In our bodies, some niacin is converted to nicotinamide, and some nicotinamide is converted to an extremely important and versatile compound called NAD.

One study has shown that the amount of NAD produced from a given amount of ingested nicotinamide is twice the amount produced from an equivalent amount of ingested niacin. NAD is important in part because it is the “de-enabler” molecule that helps prevent a certain DNA-based aging mechanism (see Nicotinamide: Golden Thread in the Tapestry of Life – Sept. 2000).

The physical effects on the body differ and people who are sensitive to the effects of Niacin and Niacinimide may prefer to use one over the other.




I'm not exactly sure about why it is important for me to take Niacin or Niacinamide? Can you help me understand? 


Their usefulness in treating different conditions for instance high cholesterol, circulatory problem and osteoarthritis can also differ. Because of the pharmacological properties difference in niacin and niacinamide, different people can have different physical reactions when they take one as opposed to the other. 

High niacin doses can cause flushing a condition that causes blood vessels to widen. Niacinamide does not have the effect of skin flushing and that is why it is preferred over niacin. The only affect that niacinamide may cause is excessive sweating. 

Niacin on the other hand it is preferred in the treatment of high cholesterol levels while niacinamide is not preferred in this treatment. This is because since niacinamide is a derivative of niacin, the cholesterol lowering properties in niacinamide are inhibited.


Niacin is also preferred in treating circulatory problems because of its effects on the blood vessels and the role it plays in lowering high cholesterol levels hence preventing hardening of the arteries. 

This in addition reduces the risk of heart attacks.


On the other hand, Niacinamide may also be preferred for treating osteoarthritis and diabetes. The two can be used in treating