In this article, we have highlighted niacin benefits for bodybuilding and described how it helps bodybuilders achieve faster muscle growth and insane vascularity. Read on to learn more.
Table Of Contents
- What is Niacin?
- What Vitamin B3 Do For You?
- Niacin And Bodybuilding
- Why Niacin Should Be Used By Bodybuilders
- 1. Niacin’s Benefits In Increasing Vascularity
- 2. Niacin Flush And The Production Of Growth Hormones
- 3. Increases Body Energy Needed During Bodybuilding
- 4. Vitamin B3 Regulates Cholesterol Levels
- 5. Helps Improving Digestion
- 6. Helps Discharging Excess Vitamins
- 7. Prevention Of Atherosclerosis In Bodybuilding
- 8. Niacin As Treatment For Osteoarthritis
- 9. Helps To Overcome Sensitivity To The Sun
- Niacin In Pre-Workout Supplements
- Niacin Side Effects
- Recommended Dosage
What is Niacin?
Niacin, commonly known as Vitamin B3 is an organic compound found in foods such as beans, eggs, milk, meat, yeast, green vegetables and cereal grains.
This kind of Vitamin B3 also comes as dietary supplements and in prescription form. It is an essential vitamin and nutrient which studies have found effective in improving lipid and cholesterol profiles.
The other forms of Vitamin B3 are nicotinamide and inositol hexanicotinate, also organic compounds with same vitamin effects as niacin.
All forms of Vitamin B3 play an important role in supporting healthy DNA. However, only niacin has the ability to modify cholesterol parameters.
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What Vitamin B3 Do For You?
B Vitamins are essential vitamins and nutrients for fueling your body. Sari Greaves, RD spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association says that all forms of B vitamins help the body convert carbohydrates into glucose, which is burned to produce energy.
They also help the nervous system function properly; help the body metabolize protein and fats; and are necessary for healthy liver, eyes, hair and skin. But Vitamin B3 is most often touted for boosting HDL cholesterol and lowering LDL cholesterol.
One of the top kept secret about niacin is the benefit it has for bodybuilding. It is good for short term and long term results.
Niacin for bodybuilding has helped many bodybuilders to have a competitive advantage during contests, and also helped them build more muscle over a long period of time.
Why Niacin Should Be Used By Bodybuilders
There have been very few scientific studies and clinical trials looking at the benefits of niacin in bodybuilding.
However, one study looking at bodybuilding and Niacin supplementation found that an overdose of niacin brings a harmless side-effect known as the Niacin Flush. This side effect comes with a lot of positive results as far as bodybuilding is concerned.
As stated above, you need to take an overdose of niacin to experience its positive aspects. You can do this by consuming natural foods or taking supplements that contain niacin.
Natural foods are recommended because they are healthier and can improve your well-being. Some of the dense niacin foods you can try include Tuna (14.60 mg niacin), chicken breast (14.40 mg niacin), Raw Crimini mushrooms (5.40 mg niacin), Tamari (0.8 mg niacin) and Shiitake mushrooms (5.50 mg niacin).
If you fail to experience niacin flush through niacin foods, taking niacin supplements will work well too.
1. Niacin’s Benefits In Increasing Vascularity
In bodybuilding, vascularity is the condition of developing many highly visible and extensively ramified superficial veins. It is one of the few details that define the winner during bodybuilding contests.
Immediately you consume an overdose of niacin either through natural foods or niacin supplementation, you will become more vascular.
Many bodybuilders don’t rely on natural foods to increase vascularity. They purchase supplements for vascularity to quickly improve vascularity for an impressive look.
These vascularity supplements work by increasing the blood flow to the working muscles during body building exercises which result to an increased energy supply which in turn enhance overall exercise capacity.
2. Niacin Flush And The Production Of Growth Hormones
Niacin is also described as a vitamin for muscle growth. One of the long-term benefits of niacin flush is the production of growth hormone.
If you didn’t know, growth hormones are responsible for increased muscles mass and muscle strength. Normally, bodybuilders produce a lot of growth hormones when they perform heavy compound exercises like bench press, deadlifts, and squats.
Regular niacin flushing combined with this compound exercises will guarantee the best results. Be sure to consume an overdose of niacin on an empty stomach, few hours before sleeping.
Some niacin users wait for the effects of niacin to go away in order to let their bodies get comfortable with itching and flushing.
Mostly those advocates for long time natural body building dietary supplements, once they are sure that their bodies have adapted to it enough to overcome itching and flushing, they can increase dosages.
Bodybuilders are again advised to be careful when they want to increase niacin dosages as this can cause liver toxicity. This is a rare condition but sometimes very high dosage may lead to increased enzymes in the liver.
To be administered as an ingredient for boosting growth hormone, you should aim to take around 1 gram of niacin 1 hour prior to weightlifting exercises and 1 gram 3 hours post the workout.
3. Increases Body Energy Needed During Bodybuilding
Another benefit of niacin is that it increases energy levels in the body when carrying out bodybuilding exercises.
It helps the body to convert carbohydrates into glucose, which is burned to produce energy. The energy produced also helps the body metabolize protein and fats, and the nervous system to function properly.
4. Vitamin B3 Regulates Cholesterol Levels
According to a wide number of human studies, niacin has proven safe for treating bodybuilders who report high levels of cholesterols in their bodies.
Limited evidence from studies and clinical trials indicate that niacin may help overcome heart diseases and clogged arteries.
5. Helps Improving Digestion
Niacin’s benefit in improving digestion cannot be ignored as far as bodybuilding is concerned. Bodybuilders are required to follow a strict diet in order for them to achieve results.
They are required to take certain foods on a regular basis. When following this routine, they sometimes experience indigestion problems. This issue can be dealt with through niacin consumption.
This vitamin helps in the normal functioning of the digestive system, as well as promotes appetite.
That's why bodybuilders need to consume an increased dosage of vitamin B3 supplements into their diet.
6. Helps Discharging Excess Vitamins
As stated above, niacin is a water-soluble vitamin. It can be transported through the blood stream to various parts of the body including muscles where they remove excess vitamins through urination.
Therefore bodybuilders are recommended consume a considerable amount of such vitamins to flush out excessive vitamins they might have received from other foods.
7. Prevention Of Atherosclerosis In Bodybuilding
Atherosclerosis is a common condition for many bodybuilders. The good news is that niacin can overcome this condition completely.
This vitamin is involved in the production of histamine, a chemical compound with the ability to dilate blood vessels. This leads to improved blood circulation to all parts of the body.
When this happens, the feet and hands benefit a lot compared to other parts of the body.
When taken in high doses, niacin is able to prevent atherosclerosis.
In addition to this benefit, the risk of peripheral vascular disease and heart attack (commonly experienced by bodybuilders who use steroids) also decreases considerably.
This vitamin is very reliable both in the prevention and in the treatment of such disorders.
Studies found that the best results are experienced when niacin is taken together with simvastatin, a prescriptive drug known to lower cholesterol levels.
8. Niacin As Treatment For Osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis is another condition that many bodybuilders experience. Niacin has also proven effective in treating this condition by increasing joint mobility.
Correlated with the facts that it reduces muscle and joint fatigue, and enhances muscle strength, this means niacin can be used in the treatment of osteoarthritis.
People with this condition are therefore advised to take high doses of this vitamin each day to successfully counter this condition. Normally, effects are observed in three to four months.
Besides treating osteoarthritis, it can also help treat rheumatoid arthritis. This condition appears when a bodybuilder’s cartilage is torn down as a result of excessive weight lifting.
9. Helps To Overcome Sensitivity To The Sun
Bodybuilders with a niacin deficiency are sensitive to the sun. Consuming at least 200 milligrams of niacin a day and carrying out proper precautions to protect yourself against the sun, means you can enjoy bodybuilding activities outdoor.
Also for bodybuilders who suffer from ear-related ailments such as vertigo, tinnitus or deafness, high doses of niacin can benefit them by opening blood floor to the ear.
Niacin In Pre-Workout Supplements
Pre-workout supplements such as vascularity supplements can give you that extra boost when you hit the gym for faster muscle growth and insane vascularity.
Fortunately, there are several such supplements to choose from. One of the most important ingredients in pre-workout supplements that you must look out for is niacin.
This vitamin is necessary because it increases energy levels through increased metabolism.
Rather than stimulating your body, niacin is able to unlock the energy that is available within the calories you consume.
This means your body is able to achieve sustainable energy without any crash. While taking niacin pre workout supplements, niacin may also lead to flushing sensation which causes the skin tingle.
When you realize this, known that this is normal and the effects will disappear after a few minutes.
Just don’t worry if your pre-workout supplementation contains too much niacin. In fact, the more niacin, the better the results.
Niacin Side Effects
The most common niacin side effect that results from an overdose of niacin is the flushing of the face.
While this condition can feel uncomfortable while carrying out bodybuilding exercises, it is not an accurate indication of toxicity.
In fact, many bodybuilders tend to like the positive aspects of niacin flush as they believe it helps improve vascularity.
The other side effects related to higher doses of niacin are skin itching, increased blood sugar, and hormone changes.
The other more potent negative side effect of niacin overdose is liver toxicity as well as nausea and gastrointestinal upsets.
To prevent any negative side effect of niacin flushing, weight loss and bodybuilding experts recommend that no bodybuilder should take a daily amount of niacin over that of 35 miligrams per day. This is based on the studies on flushing.
However, there are several supplements for niacin that contain anywhere between 300mg-500mg of this vitamin, which experts say can be tolerated under medical supervision.
Long-term doses of niacin of more than 1 gram should be avoided when carrying out bodybuilding unless advised otherwise by qualified medical professional.
How To Avoid Side Effects
In order to avoid niacin side effects be sure to do the following:
• Avoid alcoholic beverages.
• Consume vitamin c tablets.
• Take some garlic extract.
• Take in aspirin medication 30 minutes few minutes before niacin overdose
In this way, you will experience niacin health benefits without having to endure the negative side effects such as a red skin, headaches, and tingling feeling in the chest.
Depending on the amount of overdose consumed, these side effects will last a couple of minutes.
Currently, the current recommended dosage of Niacin (Vitamin B3) in every human consumption is between 14 mg -16 mg per day.
However, several studies have found that Niacin supplementation at 2 grams per day can help improve growth hormone release. This finding means that this amount can be administered cautiously as an ergogenic ingredient.
However, it is important for you to keep in mind that the negative side effects that we have highlighted above are real and that one may experience with long term use of such high amounts.
The average healthy adult who undertakes active bodybuilding exercises should include Niacin in their diet. This can be gotten naturally from a serving of turkey, fish, chicken and other dense niacin foods or by taking bodybuilding niacin supplements.
If you have decided to use niacin supplementation when carrying out bodybuilding exercises, always try your best to avoid side effects.
In this way, you will experience niacin benefits without having to endure the negative side effects. Remember however that you need take an overdose of niacin to experience its positive aspects.
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