As I continue my own in-depth studies on each vitamin and mineral, I am continually surprised at how unique each one is. It’s like vaccines, each one has it’s own risk reward profile and should be evaluated individually, not collectively. The body makes niacin, from an amino acid found in meat, tryptophan.
“The human body can also make niacin from the amino acid tryptophan, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). ” https://www.livescience.com/51825-niacin-benefits.html#:~:text=The%20human%20body%20can%20also,Institutes%20of%20Health%20(NIH).
If the body makes it, should it even be an “essential” vitamin in the first place? And it has poison-like effects at high doses that concern me.
It is said that Niacin, especially niacinamide, the non flushing kind, can cause drowsiness, and help put you to sleep. At first, this appears to be a good thing. Wow, like a sleep medication, somewhat like zinc, but it’s a vitamin. But why does it have this effect? Two possibilities are each warning signs. First, it lowers three different neurotransmitters in the brain. And second, it activates the benzodiazapine reward system in the brain, like alcohol, and like benzo drugs. Both of these mechanisms of action liken niacin, in high doses, to those other poisons. In fact, niacin is supposed to help cure alcoholism, because of this similar mechanism of action. Well cigarettes also work on the body’s benzo system. They don’t seem to be a cure for alcoholism.
Niacin was first found to be essential because it could cure blisters caused by sun exposure, which were found to be caused by a diet high in corn, which was a diet deficient in niacin. That is also a protein deficient diet. (Interesting side note, sun blisters, also called porphyria, are a listed side effect of the drug hydroxychloroquine) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydroxychloroquine#Adverse_effects
Niacin causes a rush of blood to the skin, so it also helps to heal a wide array of skin problems, including rashes.
Over the years, I’ve popped a niacin on occasion, and enjoyed and/or tolerated that flushing, itching sensation. I started taking more niacin more frequently about 4 years ago, because it is listed as a “co supplement” on the high iodine protocol, only at 500mg, and not very consistently, because of that flushing sensation / problem.
What I found interesting is that I started getting very tired on the high iodine protocol after my first year on it, and so I read that niacin helps to solve the problem of “adrenal fatigue”. Well, no. Niacin actually causes fatigue. Maybe it helps the adrenals, but that was not my experience.
I found that copper boosted my adrenals, gave me the energy, and prevented napping. Niacin causes napping!
About 2 months ago, I watched Andrew Saul’s 8 part free video course series on Vitamins. He pitched Abram Hoffer’s work on high dose niacin as a cure for arthritis. Since I have been a life long suffer of arthritis, but 95 to 99% cued, I decided to increase my niacin from 500 mg to the 3000 mg level, and test it out.
I also had just completed a course of the “Niacin and Sauna Detox protocol” for about 3 weeks and I was getting tired again. Then, within a few days, I switched from the flushing niacin at 500 mg, to the non flushing niacin. I never took more than 2000 mg. Usually only 1000 to 1500mg. But I just got so tired. At first, I went with it. After all, we heal when we are asleep.
But then I read how Niacin suppresses three main neurotransmitters. That was bad news. That’s a drug-like effect. Drugs are always suppressing things. That’s bad. That’s an indication that it is poison. It kind of shocked me. And I stopped taking Niacin about 3 days ago.
My second warning was that Abram Hoffer experimented with LSD. Maybe he needed niacin to cope with the after-effects of LSD, and or LSD flashbacks? Who knows. But clearly, LSD is one of the harder drugs that overstimulate the brain.
Another weird warning was that niacin stops animals and people from running. Really? I had just started running, rather, sprint training. Surely this would not happen to me. It’s mind over matter, I’ll keep running I told myself. Nope. I flat out just stopped running on high niacin. Did not feel the energy or urge to run. This was very much a drug like effect.
I believe Niacin has its place. But perhaps it should only be taken on a temporary basis, and perhaps only for emergencies. It is said that niacin can cure arthritis in a week. Then take it for a week, or until results, and try to take the minimum dose. I will say it was definitely effective for me. It certainly increased my range of motion, no doubt about that. It is said that the Niacin and Sauna detox protocol is only for a few weeks. Then stop taking it after that.
As for me… I like to be a bit of a purist. I’m debating with myself whether I should seek out a B complex formula without niacin, or lower doses of niacin. Or whether I should even take Niacin again.