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Science Made Easy_ Explaining NAD+
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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 physical and emotional stress.


Either niacin or niacinamide may be used for treating anxiety and depression. For these two components of Vitamin B3 to be effective, doctors recommend that they ought to be taken in combination with Vitamin B1, B2 and C.

Niacinamide provides nutritive support for the normal, healthy metabolism of carbohydrate, protein and fat for energy as well as maintaining the integrity of the skin, nerves and digestive tract.


Can someone please explain NAD+ please read about NAD

Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) is a coenzyme found in all living cells. The compound is a dinucleotide, because it consists of two nucleotides joined through their phosphate groups. One nucleotide contains an adenine base and the other nicotinamide. Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide exists in two forms: an oxidized and reduced form abbreviated as NAD+ and NADH respectively.

In metabolism, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide is involved in redox reactions, carrying electrons from one reaction to another. The coenzyme is, therefore, found in two forms in cells: NAD+ is an oxidizing agent – it accepts electrons from other molecules and becomes reduced. This reaction forms NADH, which can then be used as a reducing agent to donate electrons. These electron transfer reactions are the main function of NAD. However, it is also used in other cellular processes, most notably a substrate of enzymes that add or remove chemical groups from proteins, in posttranslational modifications. Because of the importance of these functions, the enzymes involved in NAD metabolism are targets for drug discovery.

In organisms, NAD can be synthesized from simple building-blocks (de novo) from the amino acids tryptophan or aspartic acid. In an alternative fashion, more complex components of the coenzymes are taken up from food as niacin. Similar compounds are released by reactions that break down the structure of NAD. These preformed components then pass through a salvage pathway that recycles them back into the active form. Some NAD is converted into nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADP); the chemistry of this related coenzyme is similar to that of NAD, but it has different roles in metabolism.



Can you please help me work out how much Niacin I should take?

The usual dose range is 3,000 to 9,000 milligrams daily divided into three doses, but occasionally some patients may need more. 

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