Vitamin B3 (Niacin)

Summary

Severe niacin deficiency can cause a life-threatening illness called pellagra. Niacin is required for metabolism of brain fatty acids, and functional niacin deficiency is often behind more chronic conditions like anxiety, depression and emotional illness. Deficiency is common in alcoholics.

Symptoms of niacin deficiency include depression, fatigue, indigestion, vomiting and canker sores (aphthous stomatitis) leading ultimately to pellagra and nausea, halitosis, indigestion, epigastric discomfort and abdominal pain, constipation, chronic recurrent diarrhoea, loss of appetite, anorexia and weight loss. The neuropsychiatric symptoms consist of, photophobia, headaches, insomnia, irritability, anxiety, limb pains, muscular weakness, asthenia, fatigue, lethargy, depression, memory loss, personality deterioration, confusion, disorientation, delirium, hallucinations and psychosis. The dermatological manifestations may include a sore or inflamed mouth and tongue, dermatitis, skin eruptions, skin inflammation.

About Vitamin B3

Chronic niacin deficiency causes the fatal condition called pellagra. For most individuals conditions never become this serious but illness can nevertheless occur often becoming evident in the early stages by personality deterioration such as mental and emotional illness. These psychiatric symptoms often get misdiagnosed as illnesses in their own right by doctors and psychiatrists unfamiliar with this simple biochemical imbalance, and they may resort to prescribing pharmaceutical drugs to manage symptoms without addressing the underlying cause. Once a blood measurement has confirmed the deficiency, the condition responds well to supplementation.

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