Almost all vitamins provide nicotinamide and call it Vitamin B3. This is a misnomer at the least. The real vitamn B3 is nicotinic acid which is both structurally and functionally different.
The real niacin will cause a flush and while it may be a little uncomfortable, it is highly beneficial. The most important action that niacin causes is the repair and unclogging of the capillaries. If you have bleeding gums, it may be a sign of poor endothelial condition and that you may need niacin. If you have skin discoloration from diabetic glycation or aging, niacin may be helpful. It also reduces bad cholesterol (LDL) and improves the good cholestrol (HDL). It releases built up histamines which can cause problems with people that have asthma. For this reason, asthmatics should use care when taking niacin.
Caution should be used when taking niacin. Only full flush niacin will offer all of the benefits. Timed release niacin has been related to some liver problems. Inositol hexanicotinate is not the right form of niacin and neither is nicotinamide.
Consumption of 3000 mg of niacin daily has been shown to reduce heart attack death by 90 percent in studies of patients who are at higher than normal risk of heart attack, which is far better than the best statin drugs. It also reduced the incidence of cancer and overall mortality in those same studies.
Taking only 100 mg daily over a lifetime should virtually eliminate heart attacks, strokes, and many cancers. Adults who have not had a heart attack will significantly benefit from 500 mg daily. Niacin is also beneficial in reducing the damage caused by diabetes.
Look up the Abram Hoffer study. This was the first but was not as significant as the two studies that followed. Dr. Edwin Boyle also did a study that showed a 90 percent reduction in mortality. The Coronary drug project was started in 1966 which was designed to assess the long term efficacy and safety of five compounds in 8341 men, ages 30 to 64, who had suffered a myocardial infarction. About 8000 men were still alive at the end of the treatment trial in 1975 but there were some dropouts. The expected mortality was 60 per year but the result was 6 per year!
In a series of recent studies using patients who take station drugs, the researchers claim that Niacin does not help and actually may cause harm. This is only a continuation of the fraud perpetuated by the drug industry. They claim "In a study of 25,000 people taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, doctors randomly assigned people to get either a placebo or niacin plus another drug to reduce flushing, a common side effect of niacin. The niacin combination had no benefit, with no reduction in the rate of heart problems such as heart attacks, stroke or death. But patients given niacin had a higher risk of bleeding, infections, new-onset diabetes or diabetic complications," From: USA Today
They completely fail to accept that the statin drugs, which are far less effective than niacin, cause significant problems and actually interfere with the niacin. They also fail to bring up the fact that the flush reducer that they used was aspirin which causes most of the side effects that were mentioned. This and several preceding studies are a blatant effort to discredit the very cheap niacin while promoting the profitable but damaging statin drugs.
Also, Vitamin C is very important for promoting good endothelial condition.
Vitamin C / Ascorbic AcidYour body can not produce vitamin C and it uses up over half that is present in 4 hours. This means that you need about 500 mg of vitamin C every 4 hours in order to insure that your body always has what it needs.
If you do not maintain this level, your arteries get stiff and crack, your tendons and ligaments get week and tear more easily, your skin ages faster. You are also more likely to develop varicose veins. In fact, every organ in your body suffers when there is not sufficient vitamin C present.
One important thing about vitamin C is that it is used in many important metabolic pathways that prevent aging. Not having enough vitamin C slows all of the process and allows aging to occur at a more rapid pace.