Niacin: The Depression Cure
Niacin (or vitamin B-3) has been a long-standing known cure for chronic depression and anxiety. Unfortunately, most of us have never heard of the potential emotional benefits of Niacin. Though the reason for secrecy surrounding vitamin therapy has a complicated and deep-rooted past, a simple explanation is that natural remedies are not supported by the U.S. medical field.
A Brief Niacin History
One of the most publicized cases of Niacin used as a cure for depression surrounded Bill Wilson (the founder of AA). Bill struggled with chronic depression much of his life, and after being introduced to psychiatrists Humphrey Osmond and Abram Hoffer in the late fifties, he began participating in a study including the use of Niacin for depression.
Bill supported Niacin so strongly, that he attempted to introduce its use to the AA organization, but the idea was fully rejected by the fellowship. Bill published several articles, and detailed his experiences with depression and his cure, in the book, “Pass It On.”
Since the research in the fifties, various nutritionists (and very few enlightened doctors) have prescribed high doses of Niacin for chronic depression. Unfortunately, treatment of serious illnesses with vitamin therapy has become dangerous ground for most doctors to walk on. In fact, in the United States, it is against the law to prescribe nutrition or vitamins to treat cancer patients (promoting natural cures landed Juice Master, Jason Vale in prison).
The Myth That Vitamins Are Dangerous
OK, so this may not be a complete myth… In the “Annals of Emergency Medicine” there were 2 documented cases of serious reactions to high doses of Niacin. These patients had taken the Niacin to clear their system of Cocaine in order to pass drug tests. So how does this compare to conventional medicine? Over 783,936 people die EVERY YEAR from medical mistakes and approximately 100,000+ of those deaths are patients taking prescription drugs as directed.
Treating Depression and Anxiety Naturally
First and foremost, it is important to recognize that depression and anxiety can actually be enhanced by poor diet and stress. Niacin itself should not be the first treatment if nutrition, exercise and stress are not being addressed. Simply improving your diet, exercising regularly and taking time to meditate or relax, could greatly improve problems with depression and anxiety.
It is also important to note that many prescription medications for emotional illness have their own side effects. Taking these drugs can actually enhance emotional distress, or have other adverse effects.
If depression and anxiety are severe enough however, you should probably seek out medical care from a doctor who is familiar with natural remedies and treatments. Niacin has not been known to cause death, but should be taken in carefully managed doses and supplemented with other vitamins (especially the other B vitamins).
Most doctors will prescribe Niacin in small frequent doses, and slowly increase these doses daily. Large amounts of Niacin will cause your skin to flush, but a slight niacin flush should end in about ten minutes or so and is considered normal. A doctor will most likely suggest that Niacin be taken after each meal in a small dose (such as 25 mg), and may increase that dose each day (such as 50mg at breakfast, then 25mg for lunch and dinner). These doses will not usually exceed 3,000 to 9,000 mg a day, and will be reduced if the patient’s skin continues to flush.
Niacin not only treats depression, but has also been shown to aid with sleeping problems, addiction, arthritis, schizophrenia, and high cholesterol.
Choosing the Right Type of Niacin
Sufficient research has never been performed on the effectiveness of No-Flush and Flush-Free varieties of Niacin for depression, however research has shown that they have no impact on patients with high cholesterol (suggesting the same would be true for depression). We suggest taking pure nicotinic acid (if you cannot find this at the grocer, try your local organic store or purchase it online).
50mg capsules on Amazon.com
500mg capsules on AllStarHealth.com
1000mg capsules on AllStarHealth.com
Natural Sources of Niacin
Some foods Niacin can be found in, include almonds and seeds, wheat products, beans, rice bran, green leafy vegetables, carrots, turnips, celery, lean red meat, fish, organ meats (kidney, liver), prawns, and pork.
Annals of Emergency Medicine
Pass It on: The Story of Bill Wilson and How the A. A. Message Reached the World by Alcoholics Anonymous
Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine, Revised Second Edition by Michael Murray and Joseph Pizzorno
March 8, 2017 at 6:28 am
I started taking it I suffer from jiin possession. After embracing Islam
I found out that I was sick with jiin. I thought black magic was a joke but no. Now I’m much happier after the ruqia hijama all treatment and the Niacin make me feel mentally strong and able to do all in my Life. 😀 best medicine Allah has created.
😀 I started taking 500mg now I will increase to 1000mg no flush I took the fish but I was red like crazy so my husband said stop please 😀 now I take the no flush and I’m strong.:)
Fighting to you all.
June 28, 2017 at 4:51 pm
Anyone here taking the powder form of niacin? I get my ascorbic acid in powder form so I bought niacin powder as well because there is no filler. I took half the recommended dose and I thought I was going through some extra-terrestrial experience. I know it was the flush but it was still somewhat scary.
Tamara Grappy -
February 7, 2017 at 7:14 pm
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The Anxiety Cure Book | Homeopathic Remedies for Tinnitus -
October 12, 2016 at 10:51 pm
[…] Niacin: The Depression Cure – Spastic GoatSpastic Goat – Niacin (or vitamin B-3) has been a long-standing known cure for chronic depression and anxiety. Unfortunately, most of us have never heard of the potential emotional … […]
July 6, 2016 at 4:12 am
I’ve been suffering from depression and anxiety for 6 years already. I’ve tried almost every antidepressant and it hasn’t helped much. Now I’ve been taking 500 mg of niacin everyday for 2 weeks already and I feel much better. I can sleep better, the agression has eased, my concentration has improved and it seems like it really works. What a shame for all psychiatrists who have never mentioned niacin efficacy.
September 24, 2015 at 7:55 am
After the worst depression of my life along with acute anxiety i’ve just started on the Niacin (flush) i’ve been on it before and it seemed to work. i take around 4,000mg daily with a couple of multi B tabs, 2,000 vit c and some epa (fish oil)
I only started back on the Niacin yesterday and feel a little calmer already! hope it continues…p.s i still take antidepressants (moclobimide and an anti psychotic)
September 1, 2015 at 12:16 am
I’ve been taking Life Extension’s pure Niacin + Vitamin C (with Dihydroquercetin) for 1 month and my mild general anxiety/fatigue seems same or even worse
Dose is 500mg x 3 times a day, dose of 2.000mg is my top and made me sick
IMPORTANT: I believe for those that didn’t work for anxiety that you are “undermethylated” type which means:
– Undermethylated: this condition is innate & is characterized by low levels of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, high whole blood histamine and elevated absolute basophils. This population has a high incidence of seasonal allergies, OCD tendencies, perfectionism, high libido, sparse body hair, and several other characteristics. They usually respond well to methionine, SAMe, calcium, magnesium, omega-3 essential oils (DHA & EPA), B-6, inositol, and vitamins A, C, and E, but NOT Niacin.
– while niacin works for the Anxious guys “Overmethylated”: this condition is the biochemical opposite of undermethylation. It is characterized by elevated levels of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, low whole blood histamine, and low absolute basophils. This population is characterized by the following typical symptoms: Absence of seasonal, inhalent allergies, but a multitude of chemical or food sensitivities, high anxiety which is evident to all, low libido, obsessions but not compulsions, tendency for paranoia and auditory hallucinations, underachievement as a child, heavy body hair, hyperactivity, “nervous” legs, and grandiosity. They usually respond well to folic acid, B-12, niacinamide, DMAE, choline, manganese, zinc, omega-3 essential oils (DHA and EPA) and vitamins C and E, but should avoid supplements of methionine, SAMe, inositol, TMG and DMG.
The question is, am I undermethylated so that’s why no improvements with Niacin or do I need more than 1 month to feel treatment working?
November 6, 2015 at 12:04 am
yeah Ann, I don’t know if you will get this, but I’ve suspected for a while that niacin is bad for the undermethylator in my own experience (confirmed undermethylator) I am, my friend who seemed to have all the attributes of an undermethylator) and many people on these replies on here. I’ve searched a lot to find somewhere where Hoffer or William Walsh (I have his book Nutrient Power) say outright where niacin in high dosages is bad for the undermethylator, but never found any statement, whereas it is part of the protocol for the overmethylator (whether it be niacin or niacinamide). My friend and I, and others on this reply post, have experienced where it helps wonderfully at first for immediate relief of depression, anxiety, and anger, but with continual use we find that we get worse in the long run. I even sent an email to Andrew Saul that he might need to take this into consideration when advertising it as a therapy for depression.
August 25, 2015 at 1:28 pm
Does anyone have any specific recommendations on actual brands of niacin to use?
Paul anthony -
July 24, 2016 at 8:26 am
Hi i am taking Niacinamide by Solgar. 2X 550mgs. A day and i find it almost miraculous considering some years ago i was told that i was the most depressed person they had ever seen , i am annoyed with doctors who dont tell you anything about supplements like this, for the simple reason i believe is that drug companies will not make money,its all corruption. They would rather you be an experiment with there cocktails of drugs, it laughable how a drug like marijuana is illegal yet they peddle anti depressants and anti psychicotics ,dishing them out like they were smarties ,these people dont care about your true enlightened health. Give. NIACINAMIDE a try. Paul
lilly m -
August 22, 2015 at 2:41 pm
Hello, Can you take niacin 3 times a day or is it safer just to take once for the liver. Thanks
August 24, 2015 at 6:59 am
dear Lilly, I am reading Dr. Hoffer’s book and he said to split during the day the doses,
this is due the vitamin B3 and C stay in your body for hours after being expulsed
so 3 or 4 times a days is the way 😉 your liver is safe if take pure niacin (which causes flush) and Vitamin C in same proportions
btw I take life extension’s vitamin C 1000m (250 tabs) + 500mg of niacin (100 tabs), currently very cheap
August 24, 2015 at 7:29 pm
Thank you so much Ann. I only just started taking niacin last week . Started with 25mg and up to with 150 mg along with vitamin c and only in the morning after breakfast. Once I get a flush then I will start taking in the afternoon and evening. Taking for HDL and Anxiety. Thanks again for letting me know, I do not have the book yet.
August 25, 2015 at 9:21 am
Hi Ann flush for the first time today. Thank you
August 24, 2015 at 7:33 pm
Thank you so much Ann. I only just started taking niacin last week . Started with 25mg and up to with 150 mg along with vitamin c and only in the morning after breakfast. Once I get a flush then I will start taking in the afternoon and evening. Thanks again for letting me know, I do not have the book yet.
August 22, 2015 at 1:36 am
I’ve been on Zoloft on and off for the last 5 years. My depression started when I was 3 months into my pregnancy however only realised when my son was about 3 years old that I needed help. Thant’s when I started taking anti depression medication. I’ve always had this love/hate relationship with medication. I felt better however wanted to find something natural to help me. After watching the documentary “Food matter”, 5 days ago, I’v taken myself off Zoloft and started taking Niacin. I’ve been taking 75mg four times daily plus Vitamin C and get a light flush every time, lasts around 15min.
So all this seems normal however my mood has gone downhill and I feel lost. Am I doing something wrong as I feel very down and cry about everything.
Please can someone give me some advise as I don’t want to go back to the medication.
I’m grateful for any advise.
August 23, 2015 at 10:25 am
So sorry to hear that you are still suffering with depression. I too hate the idea of ever having to rely on pharmaceutical drugs for depression.
I have been living with moderate to severe depression for over 30 years. I started taking niacin (and stopped taking anti-depressants) several months ago and am finding that the niacin works.
Are you taking any other supplements with the niacin? I take vitamin C with each dose of niacin. I have also found it necessary to take B-vitamins and Magnesium.
Kefir also seems to have a significant impact on keeping the depression away. On days that I forget to drink kefir, I notice that I seem to become more prone to feeling depressed.
August 23, 2015 at 11:31 am
I just re-read you post. You mention that you stopped taking your anti-depressant
5 days ago. I am wondering if you are experiencing withdrawal syndrome from discontinuing your anti-depressant medication so abruptly.
When I stopped taking Effexor cold turkey last August, I had a terrible time with increased depression (and some other symptoms of withdrawal syndrome) for many months afterwards. I didn’t learn about the side-effects of withdrawing from taking anti-depressants for many months after stopping my anti-depressant, and thought I was going crazy for a while!
The theory to explain anti-depressant withdrawal syndrome is that the brain becomes so used to (and dependent on) the steady supply of chemicals (serotonin / dopamine / etc. depending on which anti-depressant you were taking), that the when you stop taking anti-depressants too quickly, you experience withdrawal symptoms.
You can google anti-depressant withdrawal syndrome and find some interesting articles. You can also read what other people experienced when they discontinued anti-depressants.
September 21, 2015 at 7:57 pm
Chris…I give my son the non flushing niacin as you can take more to start off with. he takes 4000 mg a day.
November 30, 2015 at 3:00 am
Chris, my situation is very similar to yours. I have been on Zoloft for several years. I feel better with Zoloft but still not quite myself. I began taking 4500 mg of Niacin about 2 weeks ago. At first, I quit my Zoloft also. That only last about 3 days when the dizziness and fatigue took over. So, I began the Zoloft again but remained on the Niacin. I have never felt better. I’m more social. I’m much more patient with my children. I have a calmness about me that is surprising even to myself. I don’t crave cigarettes near as often. I don’t really flush anymore unless i skip a few doses while at work. Hope this helps. I still take my meds, but the vitamin is making the difference. Maybe i’ll attempt a decrease in my Zoloft and see if i remain steady.
Lori Jacobs -
January 30, 2017 at 9:49 am
I am currently in college studying natural health. I have had issues with depression 4 years ago, I found out that I was vitamin D deficient. The niacin is great it works great; I take it too, but you might want to have your vitamin D levels checked. It should be at least between 50 and 75 for good health. If you live in winter climates; this can effect your vitamin D levels. The best vitamin D is from the sun, but they do have tablets. For best brain health; is fish oil with Omega 3 DHA, niacin, and vitamin D. These three I take everyday and I feel great! I hope this helps! By the way; my grandson takes the lil critters fish oil gummies for OCD and he hasn’t had a problem since.
April 28, 2017 at 6:25 pm
Vit d absolutely changed my life. I don’t take it when I can get out in the sun but definitely needed in winter. I’d been on Effexor for several years before on a other meds before that. Did very slow ween from Effexor capsules by pulling them in half and emptying out some of the contents then reassembling. Took many weeks to come right off. The Vit d works better for me than any of the meds I’ve had.
October 25, 2017 at 9:51 am
I saw that your post mentioned “taken myself off Zoloft” and “started taking Niacin… taking 75mg four times daily”.
Three suggestions for you:
1 – Gradually reduce the Zoloft — as your niacin intake goes up, your body probably would need less Zoloft. (In other words, don’t just ‘drop’ the Zoloft.) Your doctor can help adjust the Zoloft levels to less and less over time, until you are off of it.
2 – Separate the niacin from the C. Yes, take both niacin and C — but in separate tablets. Reason: one does not want to limit their niacin intake because they first reached saturation of C. It is rather unlikely that you could reach optimum levels of both niacin and C when they are combined in one tablet.
3 – Keep increasing that niacin. Gradually. Those amounts — 75mg @ 4x/day — sounds like a rather low amount. Do some research on getting to niacin saturation. It is difficult to predict a saturation level for niacin because each person is different. Generally, the more you hold, the more you need.
July 22, 2015 at 8:03 am
2 years ago I started looking for an answer to depression when I found myself sitting in the garage with the lights off. For about 3 months I had no desire to do anything and then it was at this point that I realized that i had early signs of depression. I didn’t want to go to the doctor because it would affect my job. I also didn’t like what I was reading about depression medication. I started doing research and came across Lithium but still wasn’t sure about that either. I came across a post about Niacin and a book called “Niacin the real story” by Dr. Hoffer. I read the book and learned a lot about all the different types of Niacin and how to use them. I started off with Nicotinic Acid (Niacin the flushing type), and worked myself up to about 10 grams a day. The flush goes away fairly quickly if you work up slowly. Yes that is a lot of niacin. I found that about 3 to 4 grams a day works really well for me and keeps the blues away. I’ve tried to go lower but the depression comes back. This niacin has also helped my cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure. My doctor was very impressed.
I also started taking 250mg of b6 3x a day and that has also helped.
Niacin really works. There are ways to deal with the flushing and itching. I no longer have issues with those anymore.
Let me know if there are any questions and I will be happy to reply!
August 17, 2015 at 2:59 pm
Hello Rob, but the flushing something it not too heavy? What are you doing if you miss one dose?
Andrew bell -
May 26, 2017 at 8:32 am
How slowly did you build up to that high dose. I been taking 100mg three times a day for about a week and my skin till feels like it’s burning.
July 21, 2015 at 7:36 am
I had the same experience. Not sure if it was depression but I had a social phobia I couldn’t shake. Began with 50mg/meal and slowly increased. Now taking 200mg/meal and have never felt better. A complete overall well being.
July 11, 2015 at 11:13 am
– must take pure niacin with fush effect and not slo-acting one
– increasing gradually until reach 500mg x 3 times a day
– take also like 1000mg of vitamin C
Question -> Which brands do you recommend?
This will tackle depression and anxiety, am I right? thanksssss
July 22, 2015 at 10:31 am
Yes, it is important to take the real niacin. Both slow acting niacin and non-flush niacin are implicated in causing health issues.
The idea behind niacin therapy is to begin at a very low dose and increase the dose each day by increments of 25 mg until you reach the dosage that causes you to flush. The flush is an indication that your body has reached its’ saturation level of niacin.
Once you reach the dose of niacin that causes a flush, then you want to maintain the niacin at a dosage that causes to cause a mild flush.
It is important to take Vitamin C with each dose of niacin. I take a dose of vitamin C that is slightly higher than the dose of niacin.
For example, my current dose of niacin is 1,800 mg of niacin along with 2,500 mg of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) I take the niacin plus the ascorbic acid 4 times each day (after each meal and just before bed).
I also take a multi-B complex vitamin once in the morning to ensure that I have adequate levels of all the other B vitamins in my system The good thing about the V vitamins is that the are water soluble.
I live in Ontario, Canada and was unable to find real niacin in any of the stores, so I ordered mine through iherb.
I started with the Source Naturals 100 mg tablets so that I could divide each tablet into 25mg’s . I also use the LifeExtension 500 mg capsules.
My depression seems to be genetic; my Grandmother committed suicide because of her own battle with depression. I have suffered with severe depression for over 30 years.
It has been 8 weeks now since I stopped taking anti-depressants and began the niacin therapy. The niacin has been a miracle “cure” for my depression; much more effective than the anti-depressants effexor, bupripion or trintellix (and several others) but without any of the nasty side-effects.
I don’t have any experience with anxiety, but have read posts from many people who have found niacin therapy to be very helpful with their anxiety.
I wish you the best of luck. Let us know if you try the niacin and whether it works for you.
July 28, 2015 at 2:45 am
Thanks for your reply
I directly started doing daily 3 x 500mg of pure niacin from Life Extension and 3 x 360mg of standard vitamin C
1st flush was ok, now I don’t even notice the flushes
I must say, I take it also for POIS syndrome, which means you need to take niacin 30 mins before having sexual relationships for up to 3 hours
I am not sure if niacin+vit C is really working, I bet it is due I am on my 1st day of treatment! lol
July 28, 2015 at 12:33 pm
I hope the niacin + vit. C therapy works for you. Keep us posted.
August 10, 2015 at 3:32 am
hello again, regarding the dose, check this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7K2tqxKf2EE
Dr. Hoffer’s work said 3.000mg daily,
and for extreme cases up to 5.000mg
I am taking 1.500mg (B3 and C) for maintenance, but in case of stressfull stuff I will gradually go up to 3.000mg/day,
seems some people here is using too little doses and you could have a placebo effect, you should increase to these I guess
August 23, 2015 at 10:32 am
Thanks for the link, I will check it out.
I am currently taking 3,000 mg of niacin 3 or 4 times daily. I tried reducing the dose to 2,500 mg but found the depression returning.
The strangest thing is that I have not yet flushed despite taking such a high doses. I am guessing that my body must have extremely low levels of niacin.
Are you finding that the niacin is working for you?
Tom s -
September 25, 2015 at 9:34 am
Ann, that’s just incorrect. I spent an hour this morning reading over a paper penned by Dr. Hoffer. In one extreme example, 20 grams per day was needed to improve the patient. Hoffer divides us into three categories. Most of us fall into categories one and two, where the recommended doses are anywhere from 1.5 grams to 6 grams daily, ingested following three meals.
July 10, 2015 at 1:24 pm
Thanks for sharing your story.
Depression can be so debilitating, and some anti-depressant medications can be as bad as depression itself.
I am glad that Niacin is working for you!
Just wondering whether you take the niacin in divided doses (or all at once) ?
In what way do you feel the the B6 is helping?
August 21, 2015 at 10:55 pm
I take 1000mg just before breakfast, 1000mg just before lunch and 1000 mg late afternoon. Dr. Hoffer said that B6 will help with the absorption. So now I take 500 mg of B6 with the niacin. I feel much better this way and I feel like the niacin is more effective. If I take niacin later in the evening, I have a hard time getting to sleep. My heart seems to beat harder not necessarily faster so I take my last dose around 4pm.
August 23, 2015 at 10:40 am
Thanks for mentioning that B6 helps with the absorption of niacin. I am going to look into that, although I am not experiencing any problems with the niacin, I would like to be able to lower the dose Iwithout having the depression return.
August 17, 2016 at 6:15 pm
Hi Rob, I also need to stop early in the day. However, after I got to 2000mg, and tried go up, I could not, felt scik, and then spleen and liver pain. I had to stop and go down a lot.
You said you take before breakfast and lunch. Do you take it with water? You never felt sick?
I have a hard time with moring intake because I was used to fast in the morning; so I have been taking wth juice or fruit pulp.
August 24, 2015 at 7:14 am
“Are you finding that the niacin is working for you?”
hi again, well I got kind of POIS, chronic fatigue and mild general anxiety/stress more than depression,sometimes depression is “not completely” heritage-based or due wrong levels among the brain chemistry, so it is based in the imaginary concept of “ego” which causes resistance and finally depression, in this way I am following a Zen/Taoist Master who has a youtube channel (NaotoMatsumoto), listening daily 1 playlist, sometimes I can project resistance but not depression, because the “ego” does not control or judge anything (well sometimes I forget but then I come back), playlist 33 is a good start,
regarding the treatment I am on my 3rd week, seems to work slowly on me, now feel like more relaxed, overreact less and sleep more, will increase to 2.000mg B3/C tomorrow, btw now I am reading Dr. Hoffer book 😀 I would share but it would be not fair I guess
August 25, 2015 at 2:20 pm
just an update,
today 2,000mg made me feel kind of sick due to raised blood pressure, (got 15/8) including tireness and diziness, I think this was casused for increasing 500mg (B3/C) too fast from one day to another (1500 ->2000)
I will come back to 1,5000mg
June 19, 2015 at 7:58 am
I wanted to share my experience with niacin supplementation with everyone.
I have suffered with moderate to severe depression my entire life. Last August, after 9 years on Effexor, I stopped taking it because of the side effects.
I tried using supplements as recommended by Julia Ross in her book The Mood Cure, but they were not effective for me. My depression became so severe last Oct. that I had to go back on to an anti-depressant (Bupropion) but this medication made my depression much worse. I was then put onto Trintellix in April. The Trintellix was helpful, but side effects soon began to appear.
I happened upon an article about a psychiatrist who had used niacin for treating depression. When I googled niacin and depression, I came upon many other blogs and comments from other people who also found niacin to be effective against their struggles with depression.
I was desperate to find an alternative to taking anti-depressants, so 4 weeks ago, I began supplementing with niacin (I had already been taking a vitamin B multi, magnesium, fish oil and Vit. D). I started with 100mcg niacin and have been gradually increasing the dose by 25mcg increments each day. I use only the regular niacin, not the timed release nor the non-flushing type. I am currently taking 1,000 mcg of niacin 3 or 4 times each day (after each meal and just before bed).
Since I started taking the additional niacin, I find that my depression is/has diminished significantly. I am no longer suffering from that bottomless well of depressive feelings that had been with me since last fall. I stopped taking the Trintellix 3 weeks ago and my depression has continued to lift.
I am hoping that his is not a “placebo” effect. I had noticed before finding out about niacin supplementation that taking a vitamin B multi seemed to have a positive effect on my mood, but the additional niacin that has made a huge difference in helping my depression to lift.
I really appreciate the information and comments that I found about niacin for depression on this blog. I wish everyone success.
May 25, 2015 at 10:05 am
After 9 years of taking effexor for depression, I stopped last August because of the side-effects. My depression returned with a vengeance. A few weeks ago, I began taking Niacin (along with a B-complex and Vitamin C), and have been gradually increasing the dosage daily by increments of 25mcg. I am currently taking 500mcg, 3 times daily. I believe that the Niacin is effective against my depression and plan to continue using it.
March 6, 2015 at 8:27 am
Hi, I just started taking Niacin yesterday for anxiety and depression. I was pretty much tired of just getting refills of xanax,zoloft,paxil etc. from the doctors and it seemed like nothing was getting better, just worse. Higher doses, worse systoms etc. Yesterday I started taking Niacin 100 mg in the morning, felt the flush, was ready for it and it wasn’t that bad, 100 mg in the afternoon and 200 mg at night. I didn’t take any xanax and made it through the day. Today I just took 200 mg of Niacin The tops of my ears are hot and so are my forearms. I will take the same amount later. I am so deprerate to get my life back. I hope this works and wasn’t some kind of placebo effect. I will post again to let you all know how it goes. Thanks for listening.
May 17, 2015 at 4:20 pm
Kim, how are things at this point? Are you still taking the niacin and is it helping? Have you been able to get off or lower any of your other medications?
January 29, 2015 at 11:37 am
500mg a day was giving me profound relief from anxiety and a confident calmness I have never experienced before in my life. However, the effect is no longer there and I am flushing after every dose which was never an issue before. I must have used the NIacin continuously for 2 months. Why is this happening? I need the calming effect again in my life.
February 8, 2015 at 4:47 am
Try taking vitamin C with at least equal amounts of B3/Niacin. If you read Hoffer’s protocol, it shows better absorption. There are lots of comments in here that lead to both doctoryourself.com where you can research the names of vitamins, supplements and diseases to find endless amounts of information.
February 8, 2015 at 5:12 am
To be clear, take at least the amount of vitamin C, that you are taking of Niacin for better absorption. That is not to say to take large dosages of Niacin, the dosages need to be built up and spread out during the day. This is a good reference: http://www.foodmatters.tv/articles-1/how-to-take-niacin-vitamin-b3-for-depression-and-anxiety
February 26, 2015 at 9:04 pm
have you tried the slo-niacin, i bought it at walmart. My son take 500mg daily and it has helped him a lot, he was diagnosed schziophrenia years ago. Also I give him 1000mg Ester C, he takes a perscription called Lavoza, which is concentrated fish oil, was prescribed for high triglicerides, but works well in the brain. Also folic acid, and Sam-e, also found at Walmart or other drug stores. Also he still takes his reg meds, which is clozaril and klonopin, but this has been really cut back lately because of the supplements he is taking. His negative symptoms are good now, that is the anxiety and such. I was using 5-HTP, which is a natural antidepressant, but this made him too active and i had to stop it. But that may help you also.
Tom Lockton -
April 23, 2015 at 2:20 am
It will also help to eliminate kryptonite foods from your diet like wheat and gluten. When you do this Niacin works like a magic!
January 20, 2015 at 4:38 pm
Im currently 30 week pregnant and am having to take sertraline aka zoloft 2x daily for depression, I started to try niacin, to use the flush as a regulator, as in the more it takes to flush the more you body is needing or lacking in niacin, so to take an amount until you see a slight flush, I got up to 2000mg in one does before I saw a flush, so clearly my body is very low and in need of niacin, but am nervous about being pregnant while taking it??? I am taking a pregnancy multi vitamin supplement as well with multi b vitamines, and had my liver tested and it was fine. Surly it would be less harmfull than the sertraline?? Can any one help please??
March 8, 2015 at 1:20 pm
Hi Gemma, I wish I had seen your comment sooner. Low levels of niacin will do no harm. My biggest concern is taking ZOLOFT while pregnant. Taking any medication during pregnancy should be a no no. I am not a doctor, but I am an intuitive woman and I would never take pills while pregnant even with doctors consent. Proper diet and light but consistent exercise as well as natural vitamins such as niacin will help with depression. I wish you and your baby great health.
Pat B -
October 26, 2014 at 6:45 pm
The books Mood Cure by Julia Ross and Depression Free Naturally by Joan Mathews Larson are excellent. The only way to get out of the Big Pharma/Dr money game is to educate ourselves and find natural ways that WORK. And of course good food for the body is always the foundation.
August 17, 2014 at 7:08 am
Niacin doesn’t do anything.
Rebecca Lipscomb -
November 19, 2014 at 4:45 pm
It dropped my total cholesterol levels from 236 down to 146!
It’s helped tremendously with my depression as well. Off all anti-depressants & using niacin for 1 1/2 years. Love it and swear by it!
March 13, 2015 at 4:02 am
Are you still having success with niacin?I’m interested in trying it.Any info about the dosage strength,brand,side effects.etc will be much appreciated.Thanking you in advance.
August 7, 2014 at 7:37 pm
I’ve been dealing with depression for quite a few years and nothing has helped, you name it, I’ve taken it. I finally gave up on meds and then saw an article on niacin and depression. Of course I wanted to try it! I took a 500 mg niacin capsule, (not a flush free type, and the only dosage I could find) and had a 3 hour flush. I couldn’t sit down because I couldn’t stand the texture of the upholstery on the chair, I had a hard time with my clothing too, it was terrible, but I read of people taking 1,000-3,000 mg. How can they do it? I’ve been afraid to take it again, as much as I’d like to do it.
Anyone out there have a similar reaction?
October 26, 2014 at 7:55 pm
Paula, this happen to me also. 500mg is to high. Cut the pill in half or find so 100mg pills. Take 100-200mg once a day for about a week. Then increase gradually. Shud take u 3-4 weeks to get up to 1000mg.
December 31, 2014 at 12:41 pm
Paula its quite normal to flush with niacin. The niacinemide is what you need because in this form there is no flushing. Its still B-3 just without the flush, this way you should be able to tolerate higher mg.I hope this helps.
Zana Grant -
August 14, 2016 at 1:50 am
Hi Paula, I just read your comment from 2014. I took 500mg of Niacin for three weeks without any flush and then one night I began to feel as if I was on fire from inside my body, it was so scary, I called an ambulance to take me to the emergency room. The flush lasted at least two hours, maybe three. I refused to take it again. I too wonder how could people take such high doses and not get horrendous flushing. Every inch of my skin was red. I thought I might die, it caused a huge anxiety attack. No medical personnel or my doctor thought I was telling the truth. Disturbing. I wish I had had success with it.
Just want you to know there is someone who knows what you experienced.
April 12, 2014 at 9:16 am
I have been struggling with depression for over 13 years. Lexapro helped periodically, but I hated the side effects, hated tapering off, and still suffered when I was off. Two months ago, I started no-flush niacin – now taking 1000mg 3x daily (after meals). And it is nothing but miraculous. The flushing abates eventually and I can drink very little alcohol, but it is SO WORTH IT. Since day three (I did start at 1000mg/day), all suicidal thoughts are gone. I am still constructing a new life now that I have so much mental bandwidth (which used to be occupied with depression and self hating/hurting thoughts) available, but I am insanely grateful to the movie Food Matters, which lead me to study the matter further. All I can say to those not getting the full effect, keep upping your dose, you WILL get there!
Jerome Barry -
March 27, 2014 at 3:59 am
No flush and time released Niacin are bad for the liver. Having monitored my blood
work for several months, my liver readings skyrocketed when I switched from straight
Niacin to time released.
All liver function readings returned to normal when I stopped using no flush Niacin.
I,ll deal with the flush…it is very effective for high cholesterol issues.
March 13, 2015 at 4:16 am
Jerome,thanks for explaining the difference btw types of niacin.
August 9, 2015 at 12:14 pm
Let’s be clear, it’s the time release niacin that can lead to liver damage if taking upwards of 3+ grams per day for a long period of time (> 3 months), and the condition repairs itself when treatment is stopped. The No-flush niacin does not have this effect, and is safe even at high doses. The reason for the damage caused by the time-release niacin is continuous stimulation of the nicotinic acid receptors.
marta gardunio -
February 1, 2014 at 5:59 pm
Can I get the same effects a niacin if I am taking a B complex vitamin that contains 50 mg of niacin or do I need to get additional niacin? I do not get the flushing effect on this vitamin. I suffer with depression , anxiety and panic attacks for years. Have been to different dr with different medications and nothing has helped. I am just started taking Ashwagandha, will this interfere with the niacin. Thank you for all you information.
John Hicks -
April 19, 2014 at 10:34 am
No the kind of niacin in most B complex vitamins is niaminicide, which does not cause a flush. Several Doctors I have read who use niacin for there patients say that you should be using additional niacin beyond whats in your B complex. Start small, with 25 to 50mg
and move up to higher doses. For most people even starting small doses will make a difference right away in your skin, your sleep and you mental outlook.
December 28, 2013 at 8:00 am
Today is a new day, I took 100mg tab with breakfast and will be doing a 30 minute walking workout routine. I had very mild flushing (vs my first day when the tingling was very noticeable), perhaps due to my daily aspirin? I feel very hopeful and optimistic after reading how many of you have seen improvement in dealing with depression and anxiety. We live in a crazy world, so it’s more common than ever to experience d&a; and I am grateful for everyone’s honesty. Back in the day, it was source of shame and embarrassment, but not anymore; in fact, it’s rare to encounter someone who’s never had episodes of d&a. Thank you again for being so generous with our comments and suggestions.
December 11, 2013 at 11:21 pm
I’ve been suffering from anxiety and depression for just over 4 months. I tried so many supplements and herbs I’d read about but nothing worked until I tried Niacin. Within a week my anxiety was pretty much gone. The flush-free kind worked for me for this. I take 1500-2000 mg a day. Unfortunately, it didn’t do much for my depression, so I still had to try an antidepressant. I’m on a low dose right now and it’s helped a lot. But I’m really happy that the Niacin at least helped with my anxiety because that was almost more distressing than the depression. I do wonder though, now, if I had tried the flushing kind, if it might have worked even better and helped with the depression. I just may try that sometime, if needed.
December 27, 2013 at 7:37 am
Thank you for your comments. Anxiety and depression have been my adversaries for decades. For a while my doctor put me on ADD meds (ritalin mostly), and this made me more energized and productive at work, but it wasn’t a long term solution. Between doses I’d crash and anxiety would hit me like a tidal wave. So my dr. prescribed alprazolam (generic xanax); and later switched to buspar. Meds/drugs are not the answer- but provide temporary relief/a band aid that impairs brain function and can lead to addiction. I am so glad to have found this site/postings and the helpful comments on relief for depression and anxiety. I just started on 100 mg of Niacin (flush variety) and am looking forward to good things. Don’t mind the flush, because it makes me feel ‘alive’- which is rare when there is depression. Happy 2014 to all!
December 10, 2013 at 3:34 am
I started taking B3 1000mg x 3 times a day with 1000mg vit c 3 times a day. I am feeling really tired and have a sore throat. It is my 4th day of taking it. Is this a detox symptom. I actually felt a little irritable and more depressed today than the other days of taking it.
May 2, 2014 at 8:22 pm
3000 mg of Vitamin C a day is way too much.You can have kidney problems.As i understood, one should not take more than 250 mg of Vitamin C a day (and not for long periods of time), otherwise the risk of kidney problems increases.
Angelica Rodrigues -
July 27, 2014 at 3:39 pm
I am also feeling the same and its my first day. Any improvements for you since then?
July 28, 2013 at 7:13 pm
My wife, who is trying to wean herself from meat, dairy and bread, all while dealing with a fairly deep depression, read about Niacin and immediately raced to the store and bought a bottle of 1000mg tablets and took one. I came home a few minutes later and she begins “selling” me on the benefits of niacin. Not wanting to disappoint, and also having the “now and again” bout with depression, I take 2 1000mg tablets. At that moment, my wife yells from the bathroom to “come and look” at this bright red Welty reaction that she is developing over her entire upper torso. She calls Kaiser and they determine that she is having a Niacin flush. I’m thinking, oooops, I just took two!!! Ten minutes later I’m looking like a lobster and sweating. Luckily for both of us, the reaction is short lived (10-20 min). We both feel fine and I must say that my moods have improved significantly. The flushes are nothing now and I thank the creators of this sight.
May 26, 2013 at 2:33 pm
Flush-free Niacin works for me. I’m using the CVS brand, which is very affordable at about $12 for 200-count 500mg capsules (400mg Niacin + 100mg Inositol Hexanicotinate). The Nature’s Bounty version works just as well, but costs a little more.
For some context, I supposedly have dysthymia, a mild chronic depression that sometimes leaves me just feeling like shit (until it passes). When I use this consistently (3 capsules with breakfast, 3 with lunch), the internal negative chatter/noise practically disappears and leaves me in much better, more positive spirits, sometimes even unusually happy (no complaints here). It really helps me react effectively to situations that would normally stress me out.
That has been my personal experience, I cannot speak for other people, but I would recommend to anyone suffering from any kind of depression/sadness/negative mental issues. Start with low doses, as described in the article, and increase as needed. All the best to you!
Bill Morris -
April 13, 2013 at 8:57 pm
I think you are mixing up Juice Master Jason Vale with arm wrestler Jason Vale, just saying
April 11, 2013 at 5:59 pm
I use a brand called “Slo Niacin” It can be found at Costco and many grocery stores. It is the best Niacin and the only Niacin I will ever use. Good stuff!
Jennifer DeSanctis -
July 16, 2013 at 1:23 pm
how much do you take, and are they capsules or tablets?
January 20, 2013 at 12:01 am
I accidentally bought the flush-free kind because it was all I could find in several stores I went to, but after researching online, apparently the flush-free is ineffective. So, I searched and found one that doesn’t say flush-free, but it’s “time-released”. Is this effective? They are 250 mg capsules and the first dose, I just took 1 capsule. No flush. So next dose, I took 2 (500 mg), still no flush. I’ve been taking it twice a day for the last 3 days at 500 mg per dose and no flush. Should I be taking more, or is this the wrong kind to take as well?
January 24, 2013 at 4:31 pm
You need regular niacin and must flush. Trust me from experience. it is also the cheapest form of niacin but is more often found online now and is a bit hard to find but worth it. I also found it in only a handful of natural food stores unfortunately they mostly stocked the time released and sustained released which are not good or are inferior for the effect you are seeking. I recommend the tablet form not the capsule as the tablet form allows you to take certain amounts or break them up and use them more efficiently as you’re start starting off and going forward they are additional harder to find than the capsule in most cases but you can find them do a search on Amazon solray brand is one which has plane niacin in tablet form I bought the 500 milligram and broke it up into 125 milligrams to start. my first night was amazing I took 125 milligrams in the morning and then in the afternoon and then at night I took 250 an hour before bedtime and immediately felt asleep as I have not in a long time good luck.
Walter Frazier -
January 26, 2013 at 4:03 am
I order regular Niacin which will arrive today. They are 500 mg. Why did you take that dose? Did you flush? How long have you been taking and what is your normal dose?
December 27, 2013 at 7:27 am
Good comment. I just started taking Niacin one tablet (100mg) with breakfast; and in one week, I’ll increase by adding one tab with lunch. Puritan’s Pride has very competitive prices (check out the PP website). I like the sense of ‘flush’ factor, it might stimulate other body functions, including the brain. My hope is that in 1 or 2 weeks there will some improvement with my low grade depression. It’s helpful to also exercise 30 minutes of cardio w. light free weights 4 to 5 times a week. I have mitral valve prolapse (not life threatening), so anything to help my heart stay healthy is worth trying and staying with.
Niacin saaaaan -
January 29, 2013 at 7:11 pm
Online it says that although no flush niacin has not proven effective for cholesterol issues, it should work for mood disorders. I also have read many comments of people using no flush version successfully to treat anxiety, depression, OCD, etc. Can anyone here confirm this with their experience?
February 23, 2013 at 1:00 pm
The no-flush type has worked great for my depression & anxiety. I swear by the stuff!
December 27, 2013 at 7:47 am
Brandon; it’s been almost a year since you submitted your comment/response. How have you been; has the Niacin helped you? I can’t wait to see if it helps me (just started taking 100 mg this week- morning meal only) with my low grade depression and crippling anxiety. I plan to up my dosage to 250 mg 2xday. Do you exercise regularly? Stay well and Happy 2014 to you!
March 12, 2013 at 1:22 pm
I have used flush free niacin 500 mg a day for cholestorol. It DOES work for lowering it. in fact, i took one pill of flush free niacin every evening before bed, and in ONE month my cholestorol count went from 298 to 151…i made no other changes to my diet. On the other hand, i have been taking almost 2000 mg a day for my anxiety and depression and it hasnt helped, so i got a book about orthomolecular psychiatry and nutrition and its recommends adding inositol powder, magnesium and vitamin C to the mix. will keep u posted.
September 4, 2015 at 1:04 am
hi Gigi, I have been taking for 1 month niacin for chronic fatigue/anxiety and didn’t work, in fact, effects seem *worse*, my dose was 1.500 pure niacin and vit C. A dose of 2.000mg made me sick,
A couple of days ago I cut the treatment and now I feel good, I am going to start today with 500mg breakfast and 500mg before sleeping, if I feel bad will reduce to 500 a day, if still bad will cut the treatment,
the reason why some people do not feel improvement or get worse anxiety seems to be we are the type of “Undermethylated: this condition is innate & is characterized by low levels of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, high whole blood histamine and elevated absolute basophils.”, while other anxious people is overmethylated and niacin works for them, please check my first post of September 2015
hope anyone can support this theory I have !!!
January 9, 2013 at 1:55 am
Can it help one if their depression and anxiety is caused by low self confidence in their physical appearance or is it more for people that have depression for no real reason, I think is it called endogenous depression? Depression caused by internal influence (hormones) or emotional influence (family death)???
Shosho D -
January 17, 2013 at 9:44 am
High dose niacin works for mental illnesses regardless of the cause (not only depression) and it works for ADHD, impulse disorders, autism. The hard part is finding a doctor to work with you. There is one JANSEN who is featured in this amazing documentary with Margot Kidder (Lois Lane in the superman movie). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RE2rpITjlhI&feature=youtube_gdata_player
My personal experience is that only the regular niacin worked for me. There is research supporting the non-flush but it is not very well studied from what I saw. To avoid the flush take it 3x a day evenly spaced. You will flush the first morning and then far less the second time and barely flush after that. Move up to 1000 mg 3x a day and then read more about it to see if you need a higher dosage. Increase slowly. I am on 7500 mg daily and doing very well.
March 12, 2013 at 1:23 pm
i would like to use the regular niacin but because of my anxiety id probably freak out from the flush! thats the problem! lol
Rebecca Lipscomb -
November 19, 2014 at 4:54 pm
Start with small doses and take with a vitamin C & 1/2 an aspirin or one that’s low dose. Don’t take with hot drinks and take on a full stomach.
Salsa Dave -
January 17, 2013 at 1:50 pm
The problem is the low self confidence people have is strongly enhanced when the brain needs niacin to support its higher function and self balancing actions. Taking niacin doesn’t make the particular situation better, but it does enable the brain to settle down and make better decisions that lead to a better life.
Example: After niacin I was startled to find that I could hear voice inflections telling me people were not interested in what I was saying, a cue to move on to another topic. I had not been hearing this before taking niacin and it makes social interactions much easier, you avoid useless and annoying behavior. This kind of appropriate behavior is both positive, your brain will like it and it gives you more tools and more hope. Relearning social behaviors to avoid the coping of former anxiety won’t happen immediately of course.
Two comments: Some of the doctors say niacin requirements go up with stress so you might not need as much niacin on vacation. if niacin is not your problem, this often is obvious fairly quickly in days or a couple of weeks. Dr Andrew Saul notes that some cases required longer treatment before there was a turn around.
January 3, 2013 at 2:21 pm
What about flush-free niacin? Does it have the same effects with depression and anxiety? Very curious about trying this, want to get healthier this year.
January 22, 2013 at 9:19 pm
I have had great success with flush-free niacin. Feel much more calm and sleep like a baby.
January 2, 2013 at 11:20 am
Any downside to B3 with 20mg cipralex/escitalapram?
December 29, 2012 at 11:59 pm
So I bought niacin in form of 50 mg tablets. The first time i took one pill I started with the typical flush. It was awful. It began with a burning scalp and worked itself down my body. With that i experienced itching on my skin. I turned red on most parts of my body. It felt bad. But after about 20 minutes it all subsided. I take one pill at a time throughout the day , yielding about 200-250 mg. I try to eat food with the niacin. This seems to help reduce the flush and at times no flush at all.
Results: I seem happier, more active, yes especially active – last night I baked a cake at 9 pm at night. (very unusual).
I do consider myself depressed at times. (right now going through unemployment (third time this year), no unemployment insurance benefits (yet), no money, behind in bills, etc) BUT since I took niacin, I can handle my situation better!
Salsa Dave -
December 15, 2012 at 2:59 pm
Have been feeling much energized and relaxed after starting on 1000 mg of niacin-amide in 4 doses of 250 mg daily with meals. Found out my depression was not a character flaw when I started on 5-HTP years ago!
January 9, 2013 at 1:57 am
Can I ask what you mean character flaw? I was considering the 5-HTP
Salsa Dave -
January 16, 2013 at 2:53 pm
I had good motivations but was unable to over come some mild OCD and other behavior related to long term depression or low serotonin levels. After taking the 5-HTP I saw a lot of anxiety feelings vanish to the point it was obvious how they were influencing my decision making. I was expecting anxiety but not finding any. I also became more relaxed and more social. So my real character was obscured by the biochemistry not being well balanced.
Note that the body conserves serotonin for its most needed uses. If you start taking 5-HTP, the mental effect will be strong at first. This will diminish over 30 to 90 days as the body stops conserving serotonin and puts it to other needs in the body. So you may need to increase your dose in a couple of months if it seems less effective. Review “The false mood cure” by Julia Ross for more details on this and other nutritional aids.
Salsa Dave -
December 15, 2012 at 2:56 pm
There is a very fine long interview of Dr. Andrew Saul by Dr. Mercola on the topic of niacin use in depression and arthritis. Its 25 pages and includes a lot of information on the various forms of Niacin, safety, doses, and how it is used in treatment.
I would also suggest that those here should read “The False Mood Cure” by Julia Ross as a start to understanding the use of 5-HTP, tyrosine, and other nutritional means. Serotonin levels can be boosted and sleep improved with the use of 5-HTP if this is one of the patients problems. I found the book to be really valuable, on par with Dr Sauls information.
December 12, 2012 at 5:16 am
I have been taking Niacin for about a month now.. at the beginning when i took 1000mg it was miraculous! I felt contented, at peace with myself, and very calm. Now i take 3000 mg a day and i find i have sleepless nights.. I feel more focused and calm in the day though, but unable to sleep! Is this normal? How long will this last?
It should be noted that i’m getting off Lexotan and Seroxat – A benzo and an anti-depressant, both of which i went cold turkey on.
In line with my increased intake of Niacin, i experienced more environmental stress – Could this be causing the sleepless nights despite my taking Niacin? Please help thanks
December 19, 2012 at 8:49 am
First of all, please excuse my terrible English. My experience with niacin is somehow similar to yours. I started taking niacin in very small quantities four months ago. I began with 25 mg three times a day. Little by little I built up the doses to 200 mg a day, and I started to feel more confident, calm and happier than ever. I loved to flushes, the sensation of peace and relax I was feeling after the niacin flushes were just amazing. Two months ago, I was feeling so fine and so happy that I decided to quit smoking. During the 15 first days after quitting smoking I had many restless nights but still felt happy and calmed, so I didn’t care much about not sleeping. However, a bit later I began to feel exhausted during the daytime, and not as calmed or relaxed as before, so I thought I needed more niacin. I increased the doses: first 500 mg a day for one week, then 1,000 mg a day for another week, finally 1,500… Unfortunately, as I increased the doses, my situation went even worse. I started to feel a big deal of anxiety (unknown to me until now) during the day, tiredness, and for three times I ended up at the hospital with an anxiety crisis. I don’t know whether this has something to do with the niacin or with the nicotine withdrawal. Now I’m experiencing a lot of anxiety and the doctor gave me xanax (0,50 mg). But I hate tranquilizers. I wish the niacin were working as it did before. Have I done anything wrong in the process? Did I increase the doses to quickly? May I be allergic to niacin? Why all this anxiety after feeling so great at the beginning?
February 2, 2013 at 3:21 pm
l have experianced the same reactions.. l am wondering what to do about the side effects of increased anxiety.. l felt great on lower doses, but l needed to increase my dose to 1500mg to treat high cholesterol. l am experiencing lower moods and low energy, lethargic, depression etc… l am wondering if l should go higher and take vitamin c and magnesium to offset the side effects.. l would rather stay on niacin then go back on statin meds when had a bad result on my heart.. My heart would start to skip beats and race..even when l came off the drugs.. l never had that problem before until l went on the statin drugs.. l personally think they are dangerous…. they are not for every one…. l wont to stay on the niacin and find a good balance… I have found the niacin is helping with the chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia. .. any suggestions would be so helpful… l wont to have a LIFE.. and not just struggling to live..
Becca Bankston -
March 15, 2013 at 1:06 am
You need to take Magnesium Citrate or Chloride with a B complex vitamin along with the B3/Niacin. Magnesium is a natural statin drug. Please refer to the book “The Magnesium Miracle” by Dr. Carolyn Dean
Shosho D -
January 17, 2013 at 9:45 am
Temporary insomnia is normal. It passes.
December 11, 2012 at 1:24 am
I started on Niacin 500mg today after learning about it from a person at B-party 2 weeks ago.I was reluctant to try it at first since I am also an an SSRI and wasn’t sure about interaction. I suffer from OCD and have been on SSRIs for a long time, currently Prozac 80mg which worked well years ago with CBT. Unfortunately it doesn’t do much any more especially when I combined it with atypical AP. I have been off work on and off because of severe depression lately and decided to give it a try. I just went through my first flush and it was intense but manageable and I’m looking forward to feeling better the natural way. I am quite disappointed in the MDs that do not suggest more natural ways of treatments like supplements instead of drugs. Good luck to everyone
naomi mueller -
April 18, 2013 at 1:11 pm
there is no money in natural remedies…unfortunetly, that is what is comes down to.
May 31, 2013 at 3:24 pm
Hi Mike How many days of taking niacin did you began to feel better?
December 4, 2012 at 5:54 pm
I had Breast Cancer this past year and my Chemo dr. has now put me on Tamoxifen. I also now take Xanax, only when needed. Can I mix Niacin with the Tamoxifen? I am worried about the flushing and itching because when I first started the Tamoxifen I noticed I was very sensitive to the sun and it made me a little itchy.
October 18, 2012 at 6:00 am
I’d like to remind everybody that Niacin is not a drug and takes time to work. The worse your symptoms, the longer it will take for you to become ‘normal’ again, although you can expect gradual improvement. It was also recommended to take a high quality B-Complex with 500mg of Vitamin C twice a day as these are co-factors for the niacin. Plus, anyone who has suffered from mental disorders should avoid all wheat/gluten and eat a whole foods diet (meat,fish,eggs,vegetables,fruits), eat plenty of real foods. This was a vital part of Dr Abram Hoffer’s original treatment plan, even though we want one magic pill, we need to do everything we can to better support our bodies. (The mind is just another part of the body)
On a personal note, I’ve completely overcome Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Depression, Paranoia, ADD, Anxiety and Social Anxiety by completely avoiding all processed foods and grains. That even includes things like bacon! As bacon is laced with chemicals. Also niacin, B-complex, Vit C, cod liver oil, Vit D, Vit K2 supplements.
It’s taken me over 2 years but I’ve gradually got better and better to where I’m perfectly happy and healthy. It took me 25 years to ruin my health and it took longer than 25 days to get it back.
Good luck kittens.
November 3, 2012 at 7:27 pm
It’s encouraging to read your story. My son is 19 and has suffered anxiety and depression for 2 years. Doctors give me more and more drugs, but he’s getting worse and worse. I’m desperate because he won’t take vitamins nor exercise. Do you know any residential facility that treats mental illness with nutrition and vitamins? Thank you!
November 8, 2012 at 8:25 am
Hi Wendy, the only thing I can personally recommend is Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) by Natasha Campbell McBride, it’s the program I’ve been following. It’s designed for Autism but works for most psychological disorders. Best of luck.
November 17, 2012 at 5:29 pm
Thank you Rowan! I began putting Niacin in his juice and food a week ago. The result is encouraging. He’s playing the guitar and talking to us more. And he’s sleeping better.
January 1, 2013 at 10:14 pm
hi wendy, i was so encouraged by your comment. i have a 11 year old child that was diagnosed with depression and add. i do not want her on any meds but i am willing to try herbal or vitamin supplements. how much niacin do you give your child? how old is your child? how many mg do i start her with?
December 3, 2013 at 10:39 pm
Thankyou for your comment, I identified with alot of what you have written. Cheers
December 3, 2013 at 10:42 pm
Rowan thankyou for your comments,I identified with alot of what you wrote. I posted this comment below to the wrong person. Cheers
December 13, 2014 at 9:27 am
Rowan, I too have the same symptoms that you overcame. Can I email you…I have some questions. I’m doing the GAPS/paleo protocol. Did you do the intro Gaps diet?
sam miller -
October 17, 2012 at 3:15 am
I watched a random video on youtube yesterday talking about how Niacin has been used for depression/anxiety for various people successfully. I went out and bought a bottle of 100mg tablets. I’ve been suffering from minor to major depression for about seven years now. I’m twenty now. I deal with a lot of anxiety, fatigue, memory loss, apathy, pessimism, etc. Depression runs in my family.
So I took 100mg tablet after going for an hour long bike ride. I also drank some Yerba Mate which I’ve never drunken before. I did not flush at that dosage which most medical experts seem to say that you should flush to get the effect you desire. But after 1-2 hours I started to feel a strange feeling of contentment. The yerba mate had definitely given me an energy boost, especially after going out riding. Caffeine usually makes me more anxious, which I was not feeling at all. After 2-3 hours I was able to lay in my bed listening to music feeling perfectly happy. And it wasn’t a manic, over enthusiastic type of ecstasy. Instead, I felt very relaxed and contemplative. I was very zen like in that I could watch my own thoughts instead of being attached to them. I had little trouble falling asleep.
So today I took 100mg tablets again (4 times, every three hours or so). Same type of effect happened again. I was walking to class with a big smile on my face, which I can’t even remember the last time I felt any sense of contentment or serenity. I was able to talk to people in class more easily, I had this really enormous sense of carefree where nothing seemed too stressful. Today I felt like I could observe my own negative thought patterns that have plagued me the past several months. Usually I’m so attached to negativity that any form of positive thought is immediately rejected by my own behavior. Today that was not the case.
Is it really possible that much of my depression could have been caused by lack of B-3? I respect natural medicine, but I was very skeptical that one vitamin could have a big effect. It is way too early to judge whether or not this is the solution I need, but it definitely excites me.
Most articles I read talk about people taking around 3g of niacin a day. That seems like a massive quantity to me, considering I only took 400mg today and felt great. How much should I be taking? I’m 120 pounds. Taking 100mg tablets caused little to no flushing, so maybe I should take 200mg at a time?
December 12, 2012 at 3:49 am
Hi Sam, very encouraging story there, how did it go since then? did you increase to 3 grams a day? If so how did it go?
October 5, 2012 at 7:31 am
I am thinking about taking niacin to cure my anxiety (i am stressing and thinking all the time to the point where i can’t relax or sleep, my mind is racing but my body is lazy and doesn’t feel like doing anything) but i’m a bit worried about these ‘flushes’. are they uncomfortable? can other people notice you are flushing?.
October 15, 2012 at 8:03 pm
@Bron, I have just started the niacin treatment and have increased my dosage daily. I am up to 500mg twice a day now and yes, the flush is noticable but it does not last long. The first time you take a higher dose, you will flush, but then the next time you take it, you will most likely not flush as much. It feels like an intense sunburn for about 10-15 minutes. I have a very low tolerance for pain and I can tolerate the sensation well, I actually don’t mind it. You will turn red, like a sunburn, too. But it fades. so, if you take it on a lunch break, take it first thing so you will be back to normal when you return. 🙂
Hope this helps.
November 1, 2012 at 9:13 pm
This was very helpful. thank you. a sunburn doesn’t sound too bad. I blush a lot anyways 🙂
December 4, 2012 at 10:27 am
Niacin has been life changing. I take the 500 milligram before bed and love the flush along with the wonderful night sleep. I am 280 lbs though so you may need to consider 250 mils. Inositol is a vitamin 8 supplement added to niacin to prevent or reduce the flush it also has wonderful benefits, prevents mind from racing. I take inositol , B12 and asorbate C in the morning . Its all made such a dramatic difference from my suicidal existance.
December 4, 2012 at 7:52 pm
I have been on high-dose niacin therapy for 7 months. I have only flushed twice and it happened because I didn’t take it immediately after a meal. I take 27 grams per day which is more than most people, and it has greatly improved my life. I am curious about how I know when I am finally ready for a maintenance dose? I’m assuming it will take a while longer, but how will I know and how much is a maintenance dose?
September 27, 2012 at 4:39 pm
I have been doing research on niacin (which gives flush) and niacinamide and some other vitamins that you should use togetehr witht he niacin. I used it for schizo-affective (a bix between manic depression and schizophrenia). Just delusions ,no voices!
So this is what I used for 7 weeks:
– 2 x 1000mg niacimide a day with meals included.
I felt very active the first day. Something happened. I am not sure what the effects are, but I feel more relaxed in a way. I don’t have that nasty feeling in the body that holds you down, like having depressed butterflies in your belly all day.
Tomorrow I will try out the pure niacin. I will try this out to see if it has benefits above the niacimide.
– I will start with 3x 100mg a dag and push it up to 200, 300, 500, 1000, 3 x a day with meal
I also use vitamin C (1000mg, twice a day)
b-vitamin complex 100 mg
b6, 200 mg
and magnesiums/calcium/zinc tablet
I will remove the last one and use zinc only instead, just to see if I have a defficiency in zinc.
I hope this will work so that I can begin to lowe the medication I am using. abilify, 15 mg a day.
Take care and spread the news. Hope is good.
wish me luck. 🙂
DJ Mark C -
October 3, 2012 at 1:03 am
Good luck. Please let us know how things turn out.
December 4, 2012 at 10:30 am
September 25, 2012 at 12:07 pm
A few years ago, my friend told me to start taking Niacin to combat my depression. It worked great for her. But for me… I was impatient. I wanted DRUGS. HAHa. Worst mistake ever. Prescription drugs are from Satan.
I was diagnosed with Manic Depressive Disorder (MDD), and I’ve been taking lexapro for about two years now, at 20mg. Word to the wise: It made me WAY MORE DEPRESSED !! When it first started kicking in, it helped alot, but increasingly, I became more and more depressed. Worse than where I had started. Increased thoughts of suicide, worthlessness, hoplessness, anxiety, stress, lonliness. And so I want to get off it, but here’s the kicker: it is extremely physically addictive. I’ve been trying to ween myself off it for a few months now.
I reduced my lexapro dosage to 10mg, but withdrawls from it were making me act totally insane, and was causing increased stress. Another friend of mine did some research on my behalf, and strongly recommended I start taking Niacin to help me ween off.
I seriously feel like a normal person. I don’t remember the last time I felt like this.
I don’t feel like my drugs are just making me swing to the other side of the fence. It’s not an artificial happy. It feels genuine and real.
I’ve been poppin a pill or two of Niacin everyday, just whenever. They are only 100mg. It’s been about a week-and-a-half or two, and I am currently coming down from my first flush. (that’s why I was googling Niacin. Didn’t know it would make me burn. I was kind of freaking out)
Anyway. Good article here. I heart B3.
September 23, 2012 at 1:35 pm
I have been struggling with depression and several different med. I am on 170mg effexor and I tried niacin gradually to 1,500mg but after 3days at that dose I was totally depressed, crying constantly.
Has anyone experienced drug interaction with effexor, should I be tapering effexor before trying again Niacin. I was so hoping to finally getting a miracle.
October 18, 2012 at 8:48 pm
I have also, been on sveral medications over the past 20 years, only more for anxiety than depression. I am taking effexor as well at the moment, 150 mg. It seems to be the one that works best for me.
I have just stumbled upon the niacin cure, and took my first dose tonight. All i could find around here was 500 mg caplets, and the video I watched said to take 250-500 mg. So I broke one in half and took it… big mistake!
After about 10 minutes I had an extreme reaction. I turned beet red, had tender skin, and a bit of a racing heart beat… it was a bit scary. Anyway it is now 4 hours later and I feel comepletey normal.
I am going to continue with the treatment, only I will only take a very small amount.
I will let you know if it has any reaction to my zoloft.
October 19, 2012 at 6:24 am
Susan… Start very small and work your way up. I wouldn’t take more than 25 to 50mg the first day, then up that by 25mg at a time.
Hope this helps, and good luck!
Angela Ursery -
July 29, 2013 at 10:03 pm
Agreed! I took 1,000 mg–for my first dose, and thought I was going to die! I didn’t know that was way too much; the flush lasted about 45 minutes, I almost threw up, it felt like my skin was gonna melt off. All I could do was sit on the couch and moan to myself. I was one big, hot mess.
And then it stopped–and know that my next dose was in the double-digits, and I worked my way up from there.
Now I take about 7,000mg, and I hardly flush.
October 28, 2012 at 9:39 pm
You can take Quercitin before you take your niacin . That reduces the flush. One site I read states it reduces the flush by 95%. You can also take aspirin 15-20 mins before you take the niacin. Apparently the timing matters on taking the aspirin.
Tonight I tried Quercitin plus C that I bought from Vitamin Shoppe with my 500mg dose and did not experience flushing. When I took niacin without anything I flushed like crazy! The thing about Quercitin that makes it work, is that it is a histamine blocker. I have it on hand to help me with my allergies. flushing occurs when niacin causes the small blood vessels in the skin to dilate. You get the redness and itching because of this. The Quercitin helped me
December 4, 2012 at 10:39 am
If you take inositol (B8) with niacin it should reduce or eliminate side effects. I take 500 mils and love the flush effect but I am 280 lbs. Inositol is inexpensive and comes in power you can add to water and drink for immediate absorption.
September 6, 2012 at 9:52 am
I am 14 have anxiety and depression. its so bad that i cant go to school. I went to my doctor yesturday, he prescribed me zoloft 50mg. I have not taken it because i have read about the side effects and im a worry wort. My mom is a nutritionist and she told me to take niacin. Has it worked? What dose?
Thank you for your help:)
September 6, 2012 at 8:00 pm
Hello! At age 15 prescribed Zoloft sucks … I was your age and you know you can sue the doc for doing this if its the first antidepressant you have ever taken? Dont take it! This Niacin is awesome and does help. Iv suffered depression since I can last remember around age 8. I have really bad anxiety as well and well I didnt know what to do with it. I have no insurance so I was desperate to find something anything to help me! After 2 days I noticed a lift of depression. Anxiety has lifted a little. Im only on day 4. I hope after it gets in my system a little more I can lose that too. But if it is severe and you cant handle it yes take the Zoloft … but if you can try the Niacin please do. Zoloft isnt good for you, its another drug like prozac. Good luck. If you ever need someone to talk to email me … Im more than happy to listen!
September 7, 2012 at 11:34 am
Thanks for your response.
Would you mind sharing the protocol that you are on? I am taking a small amount of niacin and a larger dose of the NON-flush niacin now.
I am not sure how much I should take.
Thanks so much
We can chat via email too: email@example.com
October 18, 2012 at 8:57 pm
I am a mother two two daughters that have suffered from depression, anxiety, and OCD since they were little. They are now 14 and 18, and taking prozac. I wish I had tried the niacin when they were younger, however I will say that if it wasn’t for the prozac(at that time, and currently), my daughters would have not been able to live a happy life. I was desperate, and was willing to try anything to stop my girls from suffering. I am taking zoloft and it works for me, but I would prefer not to take medication of course. I will try the niacin, and if it works, will suggest it to my daughters.
I would suggest trying the niacin if you are able to ‘cope’ and see if it helps. If not, keep trying things(even zoloft if neccesary), so that you can live a happy life.
Best Wishes, Hang in there, it will get better 🙂
February 23, 2013 at 6:48 am
I suffered depression when I was in my teens and into my mid-20’s. It was definitely worse around 14 or 15. When I got into my 20’s, it was more occasional and by the time I was 25 or 26, it was rare. I sure wish I would’ve known about niacin’s affect on depression back then.
I’ve recently begun taking it now to reduce my risk of heart disease. It reduces triglycerides, reduces LDL pattern B, reduces LPL(a), and increases HDL.
You should definitely start with a very low dose and work your way up over time. The flush won’t be so bad if you do it that way. Trust me, my first time taking, I broke a 250mg tablet in half and experienced a pretty good one that lasted about 20 minutes. I have since been breaking the pills into rough quarters and am about to progress back to half-doses.
August 9, 2012 at 10:42 am
I also have severe anxiety… I have a prescription for xanax that I only take when I know I cannot handle anything anymore but I really don’t like medicines….at times,especially at my job, I feel so stressed and out of my element where I feel I need to find a new job!! I love my job but I feel anxious all the time which messes me up at work. I have been in the same profession for 8 years and I use to be one of the best at my job, but now since I have felt anxious more I mess up alot!! more then I did when I first started my job..so I have been studying up on niacin… I’m 125 lbs 5’7″ what should I start my dosage out at? My anxiety scares me bc I feel my heartrate spiking high my b/p is probably high and I feel so shaky.. I really need help!!! any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!
Angela Ursery -
July 29, 2013 at 10:05 pm
Like others have said, start with 25mgs as your first dose, then boost it by 25 with each dose. Also be sure to take Vitamin C (try 1,000mg daily) and a B-complex.
August 5, 2012 at 9:27 am
Has anyone never flushed from Niacin? I started taking Niacinamide a couple days ago. I have yet to experience flushing. Even with a 1500 mg dose. I had gastric bypass surgery a number of years ago, which can cause absorption problems. I’m paranoid it’s just going right through me and my body isn’t absorbing much niacin.
I hope I’m just being paranoid. I’ve hit a big wall with depression lately, worse than it’s been in years. Ironically, my insurance just changed and no longer covers mental/behavior health treatment! So I’m getting a bit desperate to find something that helps.
August 10, 2012 at 12:57 am
Hi Karin, “niacinamide” is a slightly different chemical than “niacin” and doesn’t cause the flushing effect – in fact, it is often marketed as “no-flush niacin”.
July 8, 2012 at 7:04 pm
I’d like to start taking Niacin, but I am currently taking a prescription anti-depressant. Can the two be combined while coming off the perscription meds?
July 23, 2012 at 5:45 pm
I’m taking 150mg a day of zoloft, and am also taking 1 gram a day of pur Niacin (not the flush free type). I am loving the results! The flush can be somewhat intense, but I like it. DON’T SCRATCH! I also shifted a lot of my diet, (FoodMatters is a great presentation on what I mean. It’s on NetFlix too) Niacin along with a proper diet, and fair amount of exercise will help you overcome the obstacle.
I was in the pits of hell, and the worst part is thinking you are all alone, and the truth is, your not. I promise taking some of these steps are the steps toward freedom from the issues, and it will help give you control that you have over your mind.
It won’t happen overnight, but you just have to believe that fact that every human being is a biological being of chemistry. If any of this chemistry is fluctuated negatively, then the results are usually negatvie (depression, anxiety). I truely believe that you are what you eat, and that would account for many (not all) of issues concerning areas of mental health.
July 3, 2012 at 5:53 am
What about medications? I’m on Nortriptaline. How do I get off of it? Take the Niacin for a week or two then slowly reduce? How do most of you get off of the meds?
David McDougall -
July 15, 2012 at 2:14 pm
Check out Gerson Therapy online. The book “Healing the Gerson Way” lays is all out. Niacin is part of their protocol, but alone will only help overcome symptoms. The nutritional and lifestyle guidance and loads of data that back it up (unless you believe the big industry pros) suggest that a complete shift in dietary thinking is in order. Also check out the documentaries: Forks Over Knives, Food Matters, Dying to Have Known, and The Gerson Miracle.
mike s -
May 27, 2012 at 10:15 am
i was taking a large amount of niacin about 6 months ago and my depression cleared up. I quit taking it about 3 months ago and i got worse and worse.
I finally realized that it was the niacin and re-started it and the difference is amazing. thank you so much for helping to spread the word.
June 2, 2012 at 6:06 pm
what dose did you use of niacin? i just saw movie Bill W and was reminded he used it for depression. I have been looking into medical marijuana for depression until coming across niacin. Let me know
June 20, 2012 at 10:56 pm
I’ve recently been experimenting with flush-free niacin to treat chronic depression… I’m now at 3,000 mg a day and see no reason to go higher than that. The effects on my mood, energy levels, and focus are pretty incredible. I can’t believe this information isn’t more readily available to the public. The only downside I’ve experienced so far is taking a dose too late in the day and having a hard time going to sleep. I’ve attempted to self medicate using marijuana in the past and I am convinced that Niacin is the better route to go.
July 18, 2012 at 11:09 pm
I just saw the movie Food Matters and started taking Niacin. The timing was good as I had just been to the doctor to report that the antidepressants were not working. She had me taper off one before starting a second, and I saw the movie. Since I was off the one, I started the Niacin. It’s the flush free type as that is what I found at the grocery store. I started with 1,000/day for a week, then did 2,000/day for a week and then 3,000/day for a week (the dose mentioned above and in the film). I felt great! I was sleeping so much deeper and add energy. One wonderful day I was doing a lot of physical labor in the heat of the day, then errands, then attended my son’s t-ball to follow up by making a meal from scratch for my family. At the end of the day I realized that it was the first time in my adult life that I could remember not desperately wishing I could take a nap in the afternoon! My husband, though, has said he could tell I was off prescription. So I am at 4,000/day and holding. I’ve also added Vitamin E and Vitamin D as well for helping with mood, plus a good multi and Vitamin C. I feel really great. Very best wishes for you. To the author: Lovely article to the author, thank you for publishing and spreading the news.
December 4, 2012 at 12:00 pm
Becarful taking that high a dosage without blood tests and medical supervision, that is a high does for your liver to process.
May 22, 2012 at 4:23 pm
Thank you so much for all your imput. My doctor put me on Serttraline (zoloft) for severe depression and then I learned about Niacin as a natural alternative to depression
I wonder if taking the niacin & certraline together was the worst thing I coul d have taken together this morning. My face immediately bloated red (doublling in size) I wondered if I was going to pass out. Thankfully the ice pack & drinking cold water stabilised the heat in my body. I now feel extremely calm and quite tired
I will definately ditch the zoloft and persist on this natural path to recovery
Thank you for all your comments as experienced users of niacin. I do not feel so alone now
July 18, 2012 at 11:12 pm
Sertraline was what I was taking before I started the Niacin. I tapered off first taking a half dose for a week, then half again for a week, having some rough weeks, then started the Niacin. I take my Niacin right after supper when I am my fullest. The body heals itself at night and then if I get a flush, maybe I won’t even notice because I will be asleep. Best wishes.
April 30, 2012 at 12:08 pm
I started taking niacin a few days ago (in the form nicotinic acid) because I have acne and read somewhere that it helps. I also have depression and don’t want to have to resort to antidepressants just yet so started st john’s wort. it took the edge off slightly but the depression was still bad.
I had no idea niacin helped depression but the day after i started it (about 200g p/day spread out in 50g tablets) my depression lifted and i had enough energy to do a workout for the first time in weeks. its also warmed me up (I’m always freezing!).
I try to be healthy and eat a nutritious diet though so I don’t know how i could be deficient in niacin… hmmm. its making me think a lot about the cause of my depression.
May 7, 2012 at 11:49 am
I noticed that too! I’m glad you are trying things out on your own before resorting to meds.
I also found that eating foods with a healthy fat content like cashews and avocados (both good for niacin and other nutritional benefits) make me feel happy and optimistic. I’m not too worried about the fat content as some people will complain that its too fattening (well I’d rather be happy than skinny and sad), as long as I consume a reasonable portion. I think the natural fat helps satisfy something the body needs, and the response is pretty quick. I definitely dont feel this way when I eat sugar (which I love) or other vice snacks. This feels different, and feeling happy naturally is nice.
Right now i’m snacking on a weird combo of lightly-salted avocado mash (1/4 of one) and sliced, firm bananas. I used to hate avos, but its super yum for me now~! That. and lots of water helps me from feeling tired, and helps my headaches.
Hope we keep it up~!
June 2, 2012 at 6:07 pm
you say your dose of niacin has been 200 g a day–do you mean 200 mg or really 200 g?
December 2, 2012 at 7:43 pm
im a recovering alcoholic and i have tried both niacin and niacinamide at 1.5 grams per day and the depression, anxiety and insomnia were corrected but it did take time. i also took 100 mg of 5 HTP. From my understanding niacin is used to metabolise alcohol and sugar and when it runs out, the tryptophan in the body will convert to niacin to continue its work leaving the person tryptophan depleted . its very interesting that the body makes serotonin from tryptophan. Hence when there was sufficient niacin in my system to metabolise sugar , my body was able to make its own serotonin from the diet and 5HTP , The tryptophan wasnt becoming depleted. My dietry history was also full of sugarand it looks like that is what caused the depression and anxiet and self medicating with
December 2, 2012 at 7:53 pm
alcohol. Would be curious to know if other people had large sugar consumption during childhood. Was also told not to do this with antidepressants as it can cause an excess of serotonin which can be dangerous.
December 4, 2013 at 4:03 am
Yes gordan I was brought up on a stodgy sugary diet and was diagnosed with pellagra at age 14. (b3 deficiency). I have suffered for 25yrs with so many problems and last nite in desperation I clicked it mite be niacin deficiency.today I have taken 2 x 500mg nicotinamide and with hours of the first tablet a miracle happened. I felt normal and stable and energetic, positive, loving, in short, I felt an awakening in every cell in my body and most of all, my brain. ME. It is the most amazingly simple answer to my problems, I know this and it has not even been a day. That is how depleted and starving nutritionally and slowly dying I was.
April 30, 2012 at 6:33 am
I have a strange love of carrots. Lol, not really but I eat a bag of baby carrots every week. I do it as a crunchy snack to keep me away from the chips and such. It really started as a weight loss thing, but I’ve gotten to where I really like them. But, having said that, I wonder if my body really needed the niacin, therefore I crave the carrots now? I was wondering if you know how much niacin carrots have and if there is significant amount to cause me to have too much niacin if I were to start taking it as a supplement. I do take a multivitamin and a b complex, both of which have niacin. I don’t think I’ve experienced the flush, but the first night I took the vitamins I do recall feeling a little warm, but at the time didn’t know about niacin at all.
December 20, 2012 at 5:22 pm
Unless you are taking large amount of niacin supplements (3000mg+ per day) I wouldn’t worry about getting too much niacin. Unlike some other vitamins, niacin is water soluble and not stored in the body tissues, meaning that the excess is just flushed out when you pee.
April 16, 2012 at 11:59 pm
I am a recent convert to Niacin – depression has kicked in this is a result of leaky gut, fatty liver as well as many other factors – like a domonio affect, depression starts in the gut not in the mind as many people think. So if the gut is a real probelm (due to anti inflammatories and prescription drug damage ) then the gut does not absorb vital nutrients thus depression adds to these problems. I saw the Documentary Foodmatters on how Niacin helped a lady who suffered depression and was anti social due to her depression but once on Niacin she joined life once again……inspiring. We are left in the dark from the Big Medico they want us all on anti depressants as it brings in the money for Big Phama and keeps us reliant on them instead of us being in control of out own health.
April 30, 2012 at 3:43 am
I agree with you completely. I watched that same doc which was the result of me finding this site. I have suffered from depression and anxiety since my HS years and I believed that there could be natural forms to cure my issues. You are correct about depression starting in the gut. I am& 195lbs. My health is extremely poor my job is stressful and I must do better to care for me first. I am going on a juice fast taking 10 days at a time.
June 24, 2012 at 7:39 am
I too am here due to that same movie. I have tons of issues with my digestion..I vomit often and pass blood occasionally. I am rethinking my diet as of last night watching that movie. I am on anti depressants and have been for over 14 years. Seroquel has damaged my lives and I have fatty liver altho I havent drank in about 15 years. I cant sleep without and have terrible mood swings..like frantic and crazy type mood swings. When you mention this to a Dr. they simply make your dosage stronger and or add more meds! I cant do this anymore and I really hope that this type of ‘diet’ will help me take back my life and my body
Rachale Jean -
April 14, 2012 at 5:28 pm
I am nursing a baby and have severe anxiety. I read in my medication handbook that nursing women can safely take 2,000 mg of niacin a day so that is what I have been taking for the past 3 days. I can tell you it is an amazingly different feeling of relaxation and relief from my anxiety. I took the niacinamide form of niacin 4 capsules of 500 mg all at once, but I plan on experimenting with the plain niacin for relief of some digestive issues.
April 12, 2012 at 6:20 am
I have been using propell mixed with a liter of water, one package provides 50%, daily requirement, i don’t know how that translates to mg, i’ll usually drink three of those a day. I noticed a difference as well.. probably a combination of 3 liters of water, and 150% of niacin, along with the other b vitamins in there..
Dr Dave -
April 5, 2012 at 10:58 pm
Congrats to everyone that has utilized Niacin and has reaped its fantastic benefits! I suffered for MANY MANY years with addictions like smoking, alcoholism, and have suffered depression and severe anxiety and have been in and out of institutions because of it. This amazing vitamin instantly works and cured me of all of the above. If you have any doubts and want to try and start supplementing it into your diet, do some research but most importantly buy a bottle and try it for a week. My mind is more clear, my energy levels higher, I feel more alive and I’m actually enjoying my life these days! And I’m not trying to sell anything, just give the gift of knowledge I wish i had a long fu%#ing time ago ~ 🙂
April 21, 2012 at 3:50 pm
Dave I suffer from severe anxiety and depression. How much niacin do you take and is it tne non flush type?
May 30, 2012 at 6:32 pm
dr.dave i have anxiety/depression. does it work very well for anxiety as well?
P. Hansen -
June 7, 2012 at 1:15 pm
I really can relate to everything you’re saying. I have just started a regimen of Niacin and have great hope. I do wish the supplement had been able to clean up your mouth, however. Wonderful message you have here. : )
June 24, 2012 at 7:43 am
Congrats to your success! I am thankful to have ran into this site to read and see that Im not alone for one..and that this may actually work for me 🙂
I wish I knew how to get off of my Seroquel tho. I wonder if I can take Niacin AND Seroquel or if I have to cut off of it first? Each time I have tried to get off this nasty medication, it has sent me to a very bad and very dark, lonely place. If it werent for my husband, I would have been locked up for it Im sure. I am a little afraid to get off of it again..but am also excited in hopes that something better for my health may work
March 31, 2012 at 10:13 pm
I took 3000mg yesterday. I itched for hours. Took around the same dosage today, not as much itch. Definitely feel calmer and the sense of dread that depression gives you is gone.
March 25, 2012 at 7:18 am
What brand, type and dose did you take? I just bought the Spring Valley flush free kind. Please respond to Pipernsm at a o l dotcom
March 27, 2012 at 2:16 pm
I try to take niacin with every meal–the flushing kind, working up to 3,000 mg a day . I take “Twinlab” 500mg two with every meal. I started with 100mg, worked up to 200 than 300, 400mg. all taking just a few doses between. Took about a week to work up to 500mg.
The flush is nice–you can feel the niacin working–not many things that are good for you work that way.
I’ve been taking it for awhile now and wouldn’t give it up for anything. It has worked miracles for my anxiety and depression.
March 24, 2012 at 3:09 pm
After watching Foodmatters on Netflix 6 months ago I started taking 3000 mg of slo-niacin that I purchase from Costco. I have stopped taking Lipitor for cholesterol and have now anxiety issues in addition to sleeping like a baby. My last blood test came in with a total cholesterol of 146 vs the normal 210 plus reading even with Lipitor. Feels great to be off all medications and have no issues with anxiety!!
My dad is a doctor and he supports my self treatment plan!
March 24, 2012 at 3:12 pm
I mean NO issues with anxiety…Niacin is a miracle vitamin when taken in high does o f at least 3000 mg/day. I take 1000 mg with each meal and don’t have any flushing. Only have flushing if I take it on an empty stomach.
March 22, 2012 at 10:04 pm
I watched the Netflix movie Foodmatters today. What an eye opener. I have battled depression for so many yrs and have tried multiple meds but have never felt right. The notion that Niacin can offer such hope is provocative. The idea that MDs don’t tell us of this is disappointing. I am going to start Niacin therapy soon and am excited about what the future holds. If anyone has experience that they can share i would appreciate it.
June 24, 2012 at 7:46 am
You sound like me, Karen 🙂 I too saw the movie last night and am about to try this niacin thing out. I have been on too many meds for too long..caused a lot of damage too. Good luck to you and I hope it worked!
March 6, 2012 at 5:17 pm
This has by far been the best treatment I have ever had for depression/anxiety. You name a medication used to treat depression or anxiety disorders and I bet I could tell you I’ve been on it one time or another. Over those years I battled with a nasty alcohol and drug problem (some of which were prescriptions used to help with my anxiety.) Every time out of rehab I was put on a nice little cocktail of SSRI’s and mood-stabilizers and what not and every time they offered little relief to my symptoms and would often have some unpleasant side effects. This time I was determined not to fail so after the meds weren’t working and I was close to my breaking point I was watching a documentary on netflix called Foodmatters and they mentioned something about niacin helping with depression and I was kinda like, um yeah whatever but decided to give it a try anyway and within the first day I was already feeling better! Seriously, I didn’t really believe it but it has made a world of difference. Its not like a high or anything lol but it just kind of makes you feel like that is what you are supposed to feel like. Its like Wow! I feel kind of silly because its so easy and I dunno why it took me so long.
March 27, 2012 at 2:19 pm
Yes!!!! It is amazing–you notice the improvement right away–it is a miracle and very inexpensive.
I only wish I had used this many years ago!!
April 1, 2012 at 7:59 pm
Hi my name is Lena and Iam 27 years old I struggle with deppression and anxiety for years and have been on almost every medicine there is possibly out there Iam so tired of being a ginny pig to see if the right meds work which only do for about 3 mths then stop then I have to switch. I would give anything to not suffer through this horrible disease. My mother who suffers from deppression as well suggested niacin to me and Iam extremly very leary of taking it because im more so like ya right, on how a natural herb can work for you. I started out with the 500mg flush free and am hoping it will work do you have any idea of when it will start to work if its possible i can wean off my effxor with my doctor of chourse and how much I shoulkd start taking and when to up the mg of niacin. Iam so excited that there is hope please reasure me and tell me this works
June 6, 2012 at 9:46 am
You need the niacin that makes you flush. Flush free won’t work and high doses of flush free niacin can cause liver damage.
April 9, 2012 at 8:16 pm
How did you start with the Niacin therapy? How much and what kind? I have been struggling with depression for a long time. I have been on SSRIs for about 7 years. I do not like the side-effects and I do not like being on a long-term medication. I also saw Food Matters.
I think we all need to remember that Food Matters talks about eating good food, too! So I have been eating well.
March 6, 2012 at 3:49 pm
I suffer from chronic anxiety and depression, and have for as long as I can remember. About nine months ago I had an epiphany of sorts and started researching “natural” ways to handle my symptoms. I have been antidepressant free for eight of those months now, and I document my “journey” on my ManictoMindful Blog…anyway, not meaning to advertise here…I have just been reading everyone’s comments (and this excellent blog, which I will be linking in my blog) as part of my research on Niacin & depression. Those of you who take it for depression, and who feel it works: what brands have you taken? I’m going to be purchasing soon. Honestly, my anxiety and depression are completely in control now (a true miracle) but I still have fatigue and I read that Niacin helps with this. Plus I want to be informed for all seventeen of my readers 😉 thanks!
Jenna A. -
February 18, 2012 at 7:28 pm
I have not tried the niacin yet for my depression and fatigue because I have been trying to research how much I should take. I am 95 lbs, 22, and I just got through nursing my 13 month old a few weeks ago. My hormones feel like they are getting back to normal but the depression and fatigue is still an issue. Doctoryourself.com has a kind of confusing explanation on how to increase your dosage. I understand adding 25mg a day and I understand you will feel a flush.. It just seems like a lot of build up to get to the suggested 3,000mg he talks about. I am reading that alot of other people on here are taking way less and it is working. Does anyone around my size have any dosage suggestions?
March 28, 2012 at 12:41 pm
To start try 100mg of the flushing kind before bed. Certainly that won’t be an issue. Eventually you’ll stop flushing with it. Once you stop flushing at that amount per then you can add more. Easily up to 300 mg, but others would say you could go a lot higher. Just do it in stages to start.
Everyone seems to take it thorughout the day, but that makes me tired. Only a few hundred mg at night does the trick for me! Niacin got my blood sugar under control, and that means a good nights sleep! I realise it has other benefits, but that alone is good for me!
February 18, 2012 at 8:32 am
Traditional niacin causes no liver damage. This been verified in many studies. It is perfectly safe and its dangers are promoted by the traditional medical field who know nothing about it. Some studies have shown increased liver enzymes with extended, no flush versions, but this does not necessarily indicate longer damage. Pharmaceuticals are far more toxic. I would highly recommend the book ‘Niacin: the real story’ by Abram hoffer, a true expert in the field.
March 27, 2012 at 2:21 pm
Excellent book–getting the dose up is easy and not really necessary. Once you get to 500mg and your body adjusts–just a few days, you can easily take two tablets with meals.
February 17, 2012 at 12:16 am
I’ve read the post regarding niacin in high doses and liver damage, but have seen nothing to confirm it either way, so it leaves me wondering if there is a definitive answer. It was mentioned that it is the non-flush type that causes the liver damage, and I, too, remember reading something to that effect as well, but still can’t be sure.
About a year ago, I took the flush type niacin for about two or three days, but I must admit the flush scared me as I had not researched enough and began to panic, but what I recall most was how relaxed I felt during that time. I hadn’t paid it much attention as my main goal was to stop drinking alcohol and I had read that it was good for helping to quit alcohol as it is getting too expensive to drink the good wines that I prefer, too many times a week!
So now I worry that I may have a bit of paranoia thinking that perhaps my liver has been compromised already, and even though I am excited about the possibility of the niacin helping my now on-going chronic depressive state; I’m now afraid to go back on the niacin for fear of real liver damage. So my plan is to take milk thistle along with the niacin. I’ve read that milk thistle can detoxify the liver, and would like to take the two together: niacin and milk thistle.
Anyone out there have any experience or knowledge to share on this topic?
February 23, 2013 at 1:09 am
Hi Reina – the Niacin won’t damage your liver, especially under 3000mg / day. Alcohol is far more toxic for your liver! Plus your liver is the only organ in your body that can completely rebuild itself, given a healthy diet low in toxins. When taking Niacin also take Vit C (up to 1000mg / day levels) and extra B vits from the other groups to keep things in balance. Don’t just overdo it with B3 (niacin).
Jacqueline Looper -
February 3, 2012 at 8:39 am
I have been taking Niacin for about one month. I have definitely seen a difference in my depression and also better sleep. I HAVE to take the flush-free Niacin. I hope that it will continue to work. I take Niacin to help lower my cholesterol along with my statin drug. I plan to pass on the helpfulness of Niacin to my friends and family who seem not to be able to quit smoking and social drinking excessively. Thank you for publishing these helpful articles.
Ann Conroy -
February 6, 2012 at 1:04 pm
To Jacqueline Looper – I have been taking the flush free niacin – niacinamide – for about a week (1000 mg. a day) in the hope that it will help with my depression and anxiety. I haven’t noticed any effects yet, but it’s early days. What I have read, though, is that the flush free niacin is not effective in helping lower cholesterol levels. This is not why ai am taking it so it’s not important to me, but in your case perhaps you should do a bit more research? I intend to, as i don’t know enough about it yet (and my doctor has offered no useful advice).
February 9, 2012 at 7:58 pm
I have read that the flush free niacin is the one that may damage your liver. I would recommend not taking that. Otherwise taking niacin and vitamin c together seems to be working for me as far as sleeping better after less than 1 week.
April 1, 2012 at 8:14 pm
I would like to say in my experiences of reading up on niacin, if you suffer from server deppression i would personally go up on the niacin now iam not a doctor but i do suffer from bad deppression and i personally started out on 500mg and giving my body a week and intend to go up on it. Ive noticed a difference within a week and have been on every medicine out there. i feel that if u have mild deppression then you would only need a low dosage, if u have server then you should be on a higher mg, from reading up on niacin including every med ive been on out there it would work the same in mg wise pending on how your niacin levels are. personally i would give it a try and not give up on a beautiful natural remedy. iam actually excited hope it works out for you and good luck
Jacqueline Looper -
February 3, 2012 at 8:34 am
I was reading the various articles on your website . I have been taking Niacin for about a month. I have definitely seen a difference in my depression and better sleep. I am going to recommend it to my family and friends who smoke and socially drink too much. Thank you for publishing these helpful articles. By the way, I HAVE to use the flush-free Niacin.
January 11, 2012 at 3:14 pm
I take niacin twice a day, 500 mg. The flushing tends to be a bit much. In which case I drink lots of water. I also have added vitamin c, 1 gram per 500 mg niacin, which stops the flushing. Interestingly though, by adding to the vitamin c there is a feeling of relaxation coupled with increased energy. Its a bit of a strange feeling, but my health is benefitting. Also, the vitamin C protects the liver, so if there is any risk at all from the immediate release 1 gram of niacin a day, then that is lowered. One of the side effects besides the better short and long term memory is less joint pain, in addition to greater fat loss, I have been getting leaner eating the same and exercising the same. Anyone who says that niacin is overrated is a fool.
December 19, 2011 at 12:10 pm
I’ve been taking the flush free niacin for over a month and haven’t felt any dramatic changes in my anxiety/stress/depression levels. I’ve been taking 3 x 500mg tablets per day. Two days ago I switched to the pure tablets which were not flush free and took my normal 500mg dosage. After 20 minutes I was bright red from head to toe. My body felt like it was sunburnt and was itchy all over. I didn’t mind because I felt like it was working. My wife thinks it was all in my head but I feel much more relaxed after I take it. I usually have trouble going to sleep at night but after I took it I went to bed and fell asleep within a matter of minutes. I am excited by the possiblities but my wife doesn’t think I should take it because of the side effects. She read online about one of the side effects of a higher dosage is liver damage. Does anyone know how high a dose is considered too high? I take no more than 1500mg a day.
March 27, 2012 at 2:26 pm
As long as you are taking the Niacin that flushes you can safely go up to 6,000mg a day. Best to take it with meals in divided doses throughout the day.
For instance if you want to take 3,000mg per day, take 1000mg with every meal.
Like vitamin C, Niacin is a water soluble B vitamin and you can take up to feeling symptoms such as stomach upset. The flush is not a “bad” sign.
May 12, 2012 at 10:01 pm
I am also starting to take niacin. How long can one take 500 mg everyday? Can I take it for years say 10 years? What harm can it do?
I am interested in knowing longer term continuous use side effects.
February 23, 2013 at 1:14 am
Sal – you can take it for the rest of your life, it doesn’t build up in your body, it flushes all the time when not used. You can easily take up to 3000 mg per day no problems.
October 21, 2014 at 11:19 am
Take niacinamide instead of regular niacin . It doesn’t cause the flush.
November 30, 2011 at 5:43 pm
For anyone considering niacin, do lots of research before you decide on what dosage to take.
From what I read while researching, high doses such as 1000mg+ a day over a long period of time can harm your liver. I only take 1-2 100mg tablets a day (that’s what the bottle says to take) as needed, and it works wonderfully for me (although, I don’t weigh very much…so maybe a little goes a long way for me). Seriously, niacin is like a miracle vitamin. I started taking it about 4 months ago when I realized my anxiety issues were ruining my life and that I needed to do something about it.
Here’s my favorite example of how well it works for me: The very first time I took niacin, I had been arguing with my brother for an hour, trying to convince him not to do something because it was dangerous and he could get hurt or even killed. I decided I was flustered enough to try my new niacin tabs, so I did. Literally 2 minutes later I was walking out the door to join him.
Raul Acevedo -
October 4, 2011 at 12:24 pm
Interesting review. Congratulations. It is known that TCH stores itself into the fatty cells of your body. Maybe The niacin releases the tch somehow providing a cleansing and sensation.
September 19, 2011 at 6:55 pm
Thanks for sharing Jerry.
Does anyone have experiences with taking Niacin AND antidepressants? is that ok?
Beth Gonzalez -
October 12, 2011 at 11:15 am
I am interested in combining Niacin and a SRI medication also. Anyone have experience with that? Thanks.
November 11, 2011 at 12:51 pm
I took niacin while on Welbutrin generics for a couple of months. I can tell you that I felt content and happy and really surprised by that feeling of wellness! I also started juicing and reduced eating meat for a few months now. Not as bad as I thought especially for a carnivore like myself:-)
My doctor took me off of Welbutrin almost a month ago to see how well I can cope without it. I’m doing fine. I found that I needed to increase my niacin dosage to 1000mg 3X/day. I’m doing great so far. I really enjoy being able to go to sleep early at night and sleeping through the night!
Good luck to you all.
John S. -
July 24, 2012 at 4:27 pm
Terry, what dosage of Wellbutrin were you on? I am also on Wellbutrin 300mg XL and was just started on Lamictal due to severe depression symptoms coming back.
I have read a lot on Niacin and I am going to begin a regimen of 1000mg 3x /day and see what happens. I will also be taking 1000mg Vitamin C as well to see if that helps with the flushing.
Could you post how well the Niacin is working for you now that it has been 8 months from your last post?
Here is to hoping I can get the same relief from my depression as others have whilst taking Niacin… 😀
September 13, 2011 at 3:48 pm
I found about about taking niacin for anxiety and depression about a month ago. The very first time i took niacin (real niacin — not the flush free, or Niaspan) I took 10 100mg tabs. It was really harsh — I felt itchy from my head to my calves, however this wore off after about 1 hour.
The next day I took only 700mg (7 tabs) and the effect, while experiencing mild heat and itchiness, was totally diminished in comparison to the very first time.
A friend who took 500mg (5 tablets) the first time reported the same phenom of being itchy the first time, and it not being anywhere as intense any time after that.
After taking a niacin regiment of about 1500-2500mg daily for 2 days, I can honestly say that I feel much much less stressed, anxious or depressed. In fact I feel really good now and my interest in smoking weed or drinking alcohol totally stopped (not that I started taking niacin for these reasons — however this is a response to the niacin — I’m certain of it).
Overall I feel really at peace throughout the day. I don’t feel “tired”, but I do go to sleep much sooner and faster these days. Before the niacin I was up way past midnight, now I have to fight to stay awake past 10pm (but this is what I really want — i get up earlier too. 5:30 – 6:00am as opposed to 7:30am — where i have to be at work at 8:00am)
I read about niacin on the doctoryourself.com website — I spent a few days researching, learning, understanding what niacin is and how it works. If you search online, you will find that niacin is the natural, organic model of “vallium” … please find this for yourself.
I’m so glad that I found out about niacin — I feel like a new person.
One odd side-effect is that because I used to smoke weed, when I take niacin, it has a similar effect. I know this sounds weird, but there are times that I actually feel mildly stoned from the niacin — like a smoked.
Also, if i don’t take it for a day I don’t have withdrawls, nor do I feel bad. I’ve been taking niacin for about 6 weeks now and I recommend it to friends who feel depressed or are anxiety ridden.
I still get the niacin flush and sometimes I feel a little itchy — but I actually enjoy feeling that because I know how calm and at peace I feel — naturally. Legally.
November 4, 2011 at 11:50 am
Thank you Jerry! I started taking Niacin a few days ago. I have been depressed and anxious over my income situation. I actually have felt a little calmer. 🙂 I cant wait til six weeks goes by to see how well I will be feeling. I have been taking a low dose anti-depression med for a bout a year. I don’t think it has done much at all. I think in a day or so I’m going to ween myself off of that.
Thank you again for sharing.
February 7, 2012 at 1:41 am
I am so thankful that Niacin works for anxiety and depression. I was on Zoloft for years and found that and it caused terrible apathy. I could not get motivated to do anything, plus it caused me to make really bad choices in my life. Now I take niacin round the clock. It is such a blessing. I ditched my lowlife buddies and signed up for a 16 units at our local college. AND NO DEPRESSION OR ANXIETY. I am very disappointed with the medical community for keeping this from me. I could have been so much further along in my goals.
March 13, 2015 at 3:55 am
Are you still on the niacin?
May 10, 2015 at 2:39 am
and now ?
July 21, 2015 at 7:41 am
Jerry, Yours was exactly my experience too. Gave up pot and feel like a new person. Never felt better.