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I just finished reading a very interesting book about the power of niacin (B3) supplementation for health. It’s called Niacin: The Real Story, by Hoffer, Saul and Foster. Like Vitamin C, this crucial nutrient has been researched and used for 50+ years by doctors to treat and cure all types of ailments. (Though you’d never know it by listening to the mainstream medical industry and news!) It’s a full-length book, so there’s a lot more information than I will go into here, but one section was particularly interesting...
Back in the day, Dr. William Kaufman (the second physician who was inducted into the Orthomolecular Hall of Fame in 2004) used niacin extensively in his practice to heal arthritis and other age-related changes. The following regimen has healed arthritis in many of his patients:
•Niacin (B3) 3000 mg daily- Taken after meals in 3 equal doses of 1000mg
(or more frequently in smaller amounts is even better)
•Vitamin C- The same as above (or even more, up to 10 grams per day+)
•A high dose B complex vitamin daily (one with B1, B6, B12, all of them)
The only side effect from niacin is flushing, which apparently goes away within about week of continued use (but might return if doses are skipped), and is lessened by taking niacin with food. Also, ramping up the dosage can help- for instance, starting with 100-250mg per dose and increasing it gradually. The flush is temporary and short-lived.
Contrary to what traditional medical sources will tell you, one really can’t overdose. Nausea is the sign that you are taking too much. (Like diarrhea will tell you when you’ve reached your upper limit with Vitamin C). The authors set 200,000mg per day as being the maximum, though there is no documentation to show that people have been hurt taking levels even as high as those. It is a watere soluble vitamin, so the body doesn’t store it.
According to the authors of the book, an estimated 50% of the world’s population is deficient in vitamin B3. (They also say it shouldn’t be called a vitamin. More like an amino acid that is important for hundreds of function in the body.)
Besides curing arthritis, they claim it cures schizophrenia (and some cases of bipolar disorder, as well as ADHD and hyperactivity, depression, and alcoholism), and has greatly helped children with learning and developmental disorders. Niacin raises HDL (good cholesterol) and lowers triglycerides and LDL (bad cholesterol) more effectively than any other substance (and much more effectively than statins). It also is very useful in cases of fatigue (also fibromyalgia), skin issues (from acne to extreme diseases), HIV, and more. Of course it also prevents pellagra, which is what you get if you don’t consume any niacin in your diet. (Like how you’ll get scurvy with a lack of vitamin C.)
In addition to using these natural treatments (with no horrible side effects like the Big Pharma drugs) these doctors of orthomolecular medicine often prescribed clean eating- cutting sugar being the number one task in their patient’s diet clean up. However, they make it very clear that diet alone is not enough. For people who are niacin deficient (or even dependent, as in the case of schizophrenics), they will not be able to get close to enough of this critical nutrient from food alone.
If you are interested in trying niacin therapy for yourself (or just making sure you get enough for general health- 300mg per day is recommended in the book), give it at least a month to start working. Although many people reported results in as little as a week. As for arthritis, patients who couldn’t even move were able to get up and get back to life in as little as two weeks using the high-dose therapy summarized above.
The dosage will vary depending on the person (it is estimated that a substantial percentage of the population just naturally has higher requirements than others). It also depends on the ailment. (The sicker the person, the higher the dose might need to be see benefits.)
Oh, and one last note. The authors recommended to either take straight-up niacin or possibly Inositol Hexaniacate to get all of the benefits. Niacinamide does not work on blood lipid profiles, and the slow release versions can damage the liver. (Whereas regular niacin and the Inositol Hexaniacate do not cause liver damage and are effective for both blood lipid and psychiatric benefits).
Of course, I am not a doctor or expert. I have ordered niacin online, but have not received it or begun taking it myself yet. So please do your own research before diving into any self-treatment.
Thanks for reading and until next time!
My experiences with the niacin flush:
I started taking Niacin. My first dose was 200 grams. (Of pure B3 powder.)
Maybe five minutes after I took it I felt a sudden burning in the stomach, which rapidly spread to my face and head, then throughout my whole body. I felt like I had sunburn, and looked like it too. My arms tingled a bit.
After about 15 minutes the red in my face cleared. It took about 40 minutes for all of the red to go away. Last to clear was my hands, feet, and butt/thighs.
Now I know what a niacin flush feels like! Will try another dose today and see if it lessens.
After my first experiences with the niacin flushing, I backed off on the amount a bit, and eventually settled on 100 grams twice per day, always after eating a meal.
I no longer get any flushing. (For the first week after I started taking it, I sometimes still got a little flush, nothing noticeable to anyone but me.)
I think taking niacin helps with my overall energy and well-being and I'm quite sure it helps with my monthly cycles. (Easier and shorter duration and no PMS for the last two months I've been taking the daily B3.)
If you have your own information to add or share, please use this link to access the comments section of the blog, where this article was originally posted.
A Natural Cure for Arthritis (and other ailments)?