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Niacin Deficiency

more about Niacin Deficiency

  • Niacin plays a very important role in the chemical reactions that occur in the body.  Lack of this vitamin can cause a disease called pellagra.  The major food sources of niacin include dairy products, vegetables, cereals, and high-protein foods.  Niacin can even be used as a medicine to help lower cholesterol.

  • Initially -- very vague symptoms such as weakness, poor appetite, sore or inflamed mouth, weight loss, or inflamed tongue.
  • Pellagra -- occurs in people with more advanced cases of Niacin Deficiency.  People with pellagra have the three D's: Diarrhea, Dementia, and Dermatitis.
  • Dermatitis -- affects the skin, causing dark, dry, and Scaly Skin, mostly in areas of the body that are exposed to the sun.
  • Dementia -- a mental problem.  Some sleep a lot. Others can be irritable, confused, or may have memory problems.  Some even suffer hallucinations or become psychotic.
  • Diarrhea -- loose, watery stools. This can lead to Dehydration.  Also, it can cause problems with absorbing other vital nutrients.
  • If Niacin Deficiency is not treated, it can even lead to death.

  • Niacin Deficiency is most often due to poor diet.
  • In the United States, alcoholics have this disease more often because they do not eat a healthy diet.
  • In some cases, genetics plays a role in the development of Niacin Deficiency.
  • Occasionally, interaction with some medications can lead to Niacin Deficiency.

  • Usually, by the symptoms and doctor's examination.
  • Blood tests are available, but they are not very effective.

  • Once diagnosed, it can easily be treated with oral niacin.
  • Eat more vegetables, cereals, high-protein foods, and dairy products.
  • People eating a healthy diet usually do not have to worry about this disease.

more about Niacin Deficiency

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