Hdl Fats And Scavenger Receptors
One of the main reasons HDL levels tend to drop on the Pritikin Eating Plan is because the diet is low in saturated and monounsaturated fats. These fats suppress the production of scavenger receptors called B1.
At first glance, squelching these scavengers seems like a good thing. Thats because they latch onto HDL particles in the blood, extract their cholesterol, then release the emptied HDL particles back into circulation, which tends to lower HDL cholesterol levels.
But this process also allows the HDL particles to return more quickly to the artery wall and pick up more LDL bad cholesterol, and, of course, thats a very good thing.
What Is Niacin And What Heart Benefits Does It Offer
Niacin is a member of the B family of vitamins, which are important for the heart specifically as well as many other bodily processes. It is also known as Vitamin B3 or nicotinic acid. The main function of niacin is to metabolize fats. It has a three prong effect in regards to reducing your risk of heart disease:
1) Niacin has been shown to lower LDL cholesterol levels.
2) Niacin has been shown to lower triglyceride levels.
3) Niacin has been shown to raise HDL cholesterol levels.
Niacin has been widely used to help reduce the risks of heart attacks as well as to treat diabetes and prevent cataracts.
Possible Niacin Flush Benefits
1. Helps Decrease LDL Cholesterol and Triglycerides
According to a study published in the American Journal of Medical Science, previous research has demonstrated that in pharmacological doses, niacin was proven to reduce total cholesterol, triglyceride, very-low-density lipoprotein, and low-density lipoprotein levels, and to increase high-density lipoprotein levels.
The goal of this small 2013 study was to look at the impact of 12 weeks of niacin treatment on the lipid profile and oxidative stress status in patients with low levels of HDL cholesterol, specifically where good cholesterol was less 40 mg/DL. Both low HDL levels and oxidative stress are typically indicative of a higher risk for heart problems.
The study included 17 patients with hypercholesterolemia and low HDL cholesterol along with eight healthy control subjects. Overall, the study found that niacin supplementation decreased oxidative stress and triglyceride levels while significantly increasing HDL levels in the high cholesterol subjects.
2. Can Increase Good Cholesterol
Research has shown that supplementing with high doses of niacin may be able to help increase HDL cholesterol levels.
3. Aids in Reducing Hardening of the Arteries
4. Detoxes the Body
Common Internet searches for niacin include niacin flush drug test and niacin flush thc. Whats the story with that? Apparently, some people conduct a niacin flush in an attempt to pass a drug test.
5. Aids Weight Loss
You May Like: Is Bone Marrow High In Cholesterol
Niacin Recommendations And Dietary Sources
Niacin is present in a number of foods, including eggs, lean meats, nuts, poultry, dairy products, enriched breads and cereals, legumes and fish. The recommended daily allowance of niacin for adults is 14 to 16 milligrams per day an amount more than 30 times less than a 500-milligram dose.
You can easily meet this daily requirement by consuming niacin-rich foods, such as chicken, with 7.3 to 11.7 milligrams per serving tuna, 8.6 to 11.3 milligrams per serving fortified breakfast cereal, 20 to 27 milligrams per serving salmon, 8.5 milligrams per serving and lentils, 2.1 milligrams per serving.
Read more:Niacin & Weight Loss
Benefits Of Niacin For Diabetes Treatment Ups Or Downs The Risk
- Post author Scientific review: Dr Heben’s Team
It is normal for people to find alternative solution to deal with their health condition instead of only depending on modern medication. The reason is really simple actually because modern medication is mostly using chemical-based drugs and medications that have side effects while traditional and alternative medication is considered as more natural with fewer side effects. Some recent studies have found out the benefits of niacin for diabetes treatments as alternative solution.
What Is Niacin and Why It Is Good for Diabetes Treatment?
Niacin is another name of vitamin B3. One important thing you should know about niacin is this type of vitamin is only required in small dosage because niacin in large dosage could be a trigger to the raise of cholesterol level by reducing the amount of LDL and triglycerides. However, aside from that fact, niacin is still one of the most important nutrients required by human body and recently some studies also stated that possible for niacin to be used as part of diabetes treatment. To learn more about the benefits of niacin for diabetes treatment, you could see the list below for details information.
Also Check: How Much Cholesterol In A Baked Potato
Vitamin B3 Vs B12 Vs Other B Vitamins
There are eight B vitamins required by your body, each of which plays a unique role in your health. While vitamin B3 is well-known for its ability to lower cholesterol, reduce inflammation and optimize heart health, vitamin B12 is involved in maintaining the health of the nervous system, synthesizing red blood cells and creating DNA. Meanwhile, other B vitamins help with energy production, liver function, metabolism, growth and development, immune health, and more.
All B vitamins are water-soluble, which means that they dissolve in water and are carried to the tissues of the body but are not able to be stored long-term and require a steady stream in your diet to ensure youre meeting your needs. They are also often found in similar sources, such as animal products, fortified foods, and select fruits and vegetables. Plus, they all work together in the body to promote proper health, which is why taking a B complex is often recommended over individual B vitamin supplements.
Niacin To Lower Cholesterol What Do The Studies Say
According to the Coronary Drug Project, 1,119 men who had survived a heart attack were given niacin and compared with a larger control group. After six years, total cholesterol was 10 percent lower. Nine years after the study, total mortality in the group that had received the drug was still 11 percent lower than that of the control group.
More recent studies have not been that favorable concerning niacins role in reducing the risk of heart disease. One funded by Merck studying the effect of a pill containing extended release niacin showed that it did not prevent the occurrence of heart attacks and may also lead to diabetic complications and increased bleeding.
Critics of this latest study cite design flaws in the study which may have skewed results. There was also another drug present called laropiprant that prevents flushing of the face, which is common with niacin therapy. It is possible that the presence of this other agent altered the outcome of this study.
Along with the positive and negative, there are those that are mixed in their opinion of using niacin for cholesterol. The Mayo Clinic says that niacin can increase your good HDL, but the side effects, including stomach upset and bleeding, might outweigh the benefits.
Read Also: Does Shrimp Have High Cholesterol
The Power Of Consistency
Signing up for 1MD Nutrition’s Subscription Box means you can spend less time worrying and more time staying motivated and focused on your health routine.
We are your biggest health advocates, so let us help you stay on track by automatically sending your joint, heart, immunity, and digestive health support supplements all in one box, on time… and start enjoying a happier, healthier life today.
Put your health first with 1MD Nutrition Subscription Box
Niacin To Lower Cholesterol What Does The Future Hold
Without doubt more research is needed to make precise recommendations of niacin for cholesterol!
The correlation between niacin and higher levels of HDL is known, but the high dose required makes general usage difficult.
However, most studies conclude that niacin is an effective and inexpensive treatment that can improve the cholesterol-to-HDL ratio.
So at the moment, unless under medical supervision, high doses of niacin are not advised just keep eating a healthy balanced diet, take some exercise and make a few lifestyle changes the effects on your HDL levels will be just as good!
Also Check: Is Bone Marrow High In Cholesterol
How To Obtain The Benefits Of Niacin
Niacin is one of the B vitamins, and like other B vitamins is an essential nutrient required for cellular energy metabolism. It is available from a wide variety of foods, including whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, meat and fish, and beans and nuts. As an inexpensive and safe supplement, niacin is widely used for its effects on increasing HDL to lower cardiovascular risk, to prevent the pain and inflammation of arthritis, and to treat a variety of psychological disorders including anxiety and alcoholism. When used appropriately, niacin is very safe.
So Is Niacin A Good Choice For Lowering Cholesterol
The answer to that question is not cut and dried. There are doctors who have been prescribing a daily niacin dose for cholesterol for years who swear by the treatment as both effective and necessary. Others will take the results from these latest studies at face value and shy away from prescribing it to their patients.
The bottom line is that niacin therapy is likely right for some people and wrong for others, depending on their particular situation. Your best bet is to talk to your doctor/cardiologist and see if it makes sense for you. If you are currently on niacin and experiencing any flushness or other symptoms, consult your doctor and perhaps look into alternatives for lowering cholesterol.
Also Check: Is Goat Cheese Bad For Cholesterol
I Heard Taking Niacin For Cholesterol Was Dangerous Didnt They Stop A Drugs Trial
You are thinking about the US study called AIM-HIGH, , which was sponsored by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute .
In this study the researchers were looking to see whether raising HDL with a drug based on niacin, while at the same time lowering LDL with a statin drug could prevent more instances of heart disease than by just taking the statin by itself.
This is an ongoing study that started in 2006 and was due to finish in 2012, but it was halted eighteen months early.
Potential Niacin Side Effects And Caution
Taking niacin can cause skin flushing, particularly when you first start taking it. Minor side effects of niacin supplementation can also include upset stomach and diarrhea. These mild side effects usually decrease over time.
Is a niacin flush dangerous? High doses of niacin have been associated with liver damage, gastrointestinal problems, glucose intolerance, low blood pressure, heart rhythm changes and other health issues. This is why its important to speak with your health care provider about the appropriate niacin supplement and dose for your particular needs.
What about no-flush niacin or niacin flush-free? No-flush niacin often contains inositol nicotinate, also known as inositol hexanicotinate. These forms of niacin are different than niacin and may not provide the same effects as niacin and hence not produce the same visible flushing effect. Some common recommendations for reducing skin flushing from niacin supplementation include avoiding alcohol and spicy food. Also, taking niacin with food and starting with a lower dose and gradually increasing the dosage over time are known to reduce the chances of skin flushing.
A niacin flush as well as niacin supplementation is often not recommended for anyone with the following conditions:
- Active kidney disease
- Oversensitivity to niacin
- Type 2 diabetes with uncontrolled blood sugar levels
Is it typically not recommended to take niacin extended-release tablets if you are pregnant, trying to become pregnant or breastfeeding.
Also Check: Does Tuna Have Good Or Bad Cholesterol
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Hendrix, C. R., Housh, T. J., Mielke, M., Zuniga, J. M., Camic, C. L., Johnson, G. O., Schmidt, R. J., and Housh, D. J. Acute effects of a caffeine-containing supplement on bench press and leg extension strength and time to exhaustion during cycle ergometry. J Strength.Cond.Res 2010 24:859-865. View abstract.
Urberg, M., Benyi, J., and John, R. Hypocholesterolemic effects of nicotinic acid and chromium supplementation. J Fam.Pract. 1988 27:603-606. View abstract.
– Blankenhorn DH, Malinow MR, Mack WJ. Colestipol plus niacin therapy elevates plasma homocysteine levels. Coron Art Dis 1991 2:357-360.
Alhadeff L, Gualtieri CT, Lipton M. Toxic effects of water-soluble vitamins. Nutr Rev. 1984 42:33-40. View abstract.
Ali EH, McJunkin B, Jubelirer S, Hood W. Niacin induced coagulopathy as a manifestation of occult liver injury. W V Med J. 2013 Jan-Feb 109:12-4 View abstract.
American Dietetic Association Website. Available at: www.eatright.org/adap1097.html .
American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. ASHP Therapeutic Position Statement on the safe use of niacin in the management of dyslipidemias. Am J Health Syst Pharm 1997 54:2815-9. View abstract.
Andersson RG, Aberg G, Brattsand R, Ericsson E, Lundholm L. Studies on the mechanism of flush induced by nicotinic acid. Acta Pharmacol Toxicol . 1977 Jul 41:1-10. View abstract.
Anon. Niacinamide Monograph. Alt Med Rev 2002 7:525-9. View abstract.
Forms And Benefits Of Niacin
Niacin comes in several forms, including niacinamide and standard “fast-release” niacin. They both help to increase cellular NAD, an essential metabolic molecule for all life, but significantly, only niacin can raise HDL more than any statin while simultaneously lowering VLDL , triglycerides , and total cholesterol. These outcomes are commonly desirable in most high risk cardiovascular disease patients. However, niacin has also been shown to elevate NAD more than niacinamide in many cell types, making niacin superior to niacinamide for helping to prevent disease.
Also Check: Is Pork Bad For Your Cholesterol
Supplements To Lower Cholesterol And Live A Happy Life
High cholesterol is hard to treat because symptoms are often invisible. The human liver can produce cholesterol fat. Humans can also get cholesterol from food sources such as dairy, meat, and fish. While a little cholesterol is good, too much can cause a stiffening, narrowing, and clogging of blood vessels that can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Some supplements like niacin, bergamot, and omega-3 fatty acids can aid in lowering cholesterol.
How Can Flushing Be Avoided
Unfortunately, if you want the cholesterol health benefits of niacin, a “no-flush” option does not exist. But there are some ways that you can prevent or minimize the flushing effects. Taking a dose of acetylsalicylic acid 30 minutes before your niacin dose can minimize flushing. Flushing may also be reduced if niacin is taken after meals. Avoid hot drinks or alcohol for 1 to 2 hours after taking niacin, as this can add to the flushing.
If you are just starting to take niacin, begin at a low dose and gradually increase the dose as recommended by your health professional to help minimize flushing. The good news is that the flushing effect often decreases over time as you get used to taking niacin. In fact, many patients find that the flushing stops after 1 to 2 weeks of being on a stable dose of niacin.
There are some people who should not take niacin, such as those who have a history of stomach ulcers. Always speak to your doctor or pharmacist before starting a new medication.
Also Check: Are Shrimp Bad For Cholesterol
Vitamin B3 Uses In Traditional Medicine
Foods high in niacin are typically rich in a long list of other important nutrients as well, which is why most can fit seamlessly into many forms of traditional medicine for their healing and health-promoting properties.
For instance, animal proteins, such as meat, poultry and fish ,are common components in Traditional Chinese Medicine that are believed to tonify the qi, also known as the vital force that is essential to sustaining life and maintaining mental and physical health. Additionally, fish is thought to help fight fatigue, beef is used to strengthen the spleen and chicken is believed to keep the kidneys functioning properly.
Plenty of plant-based niacin foods can be consumed on an Ayurvedic diet as well. Sweet potatoes, for example, are satisfying, easy to digest and excellent for liver health, while asparagus is thought to reduce inflammation, help alkalize the body and nourish the blood.
Niacin And Other Cholesterol Lowering Supplements Which Route Is For Me
Niacin for cholesterol is one of the most effective cholesterol lowering supplements, but there are also many cholesterol treatment options, cholesterol medications, and ways to lower cholesterol using the natural route.
If your doctor looks at your cholesterol readings after a cholesterol check and you see a worried frown, your next question should be, So, Doc, what do I need to take to regain normal cholesterol levels?
Interested in finding out more about using niacin to lower cholesterol? If so, below you will find all the information you could want on niacin and cholesterol both.
Recommended Reading: Are Baked Potatoes High In Cholesterol
Understanding How You Measure Up
Too much LDL cholesterol can increase your risk for heart disease. At the same time, too little HDL cholesterol can lead to the same effect. This is because HDL is responsible for removing the bad cholesterol from the blood and taking it back to the liver to be disposed, preventing the buildup of plaque in the arteries.
According to the National Institutes of Health, your ideal cholesterol levels are:
- Total cholesterol: less than 200 mg/dL
- LDL cholesterol:less than 100 mg/dL
- HDL cholesterol: 60 mg/dL or higher
Niacin: The Benefits Dosage Information And Possible Side Effects
Your body requires niacin to function, and food is the best source. But supplemental niacin can be beneficial for those with high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or other heart problems. Here is more information on its benefits.
7 minute read
Niacin, or vitamin B3, is one of the most valuable nutrients for human health. Every part of the body requires niacin in order to function properly.
The body uses niacin to turn food into energy and to keep your digestive and immune systems healthy. It also works in several ways to boost heart health and prevent heart disease. Most people can get the niacin they need from a balanced diet, but sometimes a supplement is useful for boosted health.