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Vitamin B3, also known as niacin, is an essential nutrient that plays a crucial role in various bodily functions. It is involved in the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins and helps to maintain healthy skin and nerves. Niacin is found in a variety of foods, including meat, fish, and fortified cereals, and can also be taken as a dietary supplement.

Nicotinamide the superior form of Vitamin B3

However, nicotinamide, a form of vitamin B3, may be a superior alternative to niacin in certain circumstances. Nicotinamide, also known as nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD), is a coenzyme that is involved in numerous metabolic reactions in the body. It is important for energy production, DNA repair, and immune function, among other things.

One reason why nicotinamide may be superior to niacin is that it is less likely to cause side effects. Niacin can cause flushing, itching, and other skin irritation when taken in high doses. Nicotinamide, on the other hand, does not have these side effects and can be taken in higher doses without causing discomfort.

Nicotinamide and diabetes

Another advantage of nicotinamide is its potential to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. Several studies have shown that nicotinamide can improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood glucose levels in people with type 2 diabetes. In a randomized controlled trial published in the journal Diabetes Care, researchers found that nicotinamide improved insulin sensitivity by 33% and reduced the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 58% in people at high risk of the disease.

Nicotinamide: a vitamin with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects

Nicotinamide may also have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, which may be beneficial for skin health. A study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology found that nicotinamide improved skin barrier function, hydration, and appearance in people with dry skin. Another study published in the Journal of Dermatological Science found that nicotinamide reduced inflammation and increased collagen production in human skin cells.


In conclusion, nicotinamide is a form of vitamin B3 that may be superior to niacin in certain circumstances due to its lower risk of side effects, potential to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, and anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Further research is needed to fully understand the potential benefits of nicotinamide and to determine the optimal dosage and duration of treatment.


  • Diabetes Care. (2004). Effects of nicotinamide on insulin secretion and insulin sensitivity in human subjects.

  • Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology. (2005). The effect of niacinamide on reducing cutaneous pigmentary disorders.

  • Journal of Dermatological Science. (2006). Nicotinamide increases biosynthesis of ceramides as well as other stratum corneum lipids to improve the epidermal permeability barrier.

  • British Journal of Dermatology. (2015). Nicotinamide for acne vulgaris.

  • American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. (2006). Nicotinamide improves insulin sensitivity in Chinese subjects with impaired glucose tolerance.

  • Walocko FM, Eber AE, Keri JE, Al-Harbi MA, Nouri K. The role of nicotinamide in acne treatment. Dermatol Ther. 2017 Sep;30(5). doi: 10.1111/dth.12481. Epub 2017 Feb 21. PMID: 28220628.

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