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What is the difference between Nicotinamide and Niacin?

Stacy Wiegman, PharmD
Stacy Wiegman, PharmD
Pharmacy
answer

Niacin is the compound nicotinic acid, and is a term to describe a number of compounds related to nicotinic acid, including nicotinamide (niacinamide) and inositol nicotinate (inositol hexaniacinate). The different forms of niacin are not interchangeable and have different medical purposes. Niacin (nicotinic acid) is commonly used to treat high cholesterol. Nicotinamide is taken to treat arthritis and pellagra. Nicotinamide is also used as a vitamin supplement and does not cause the flushing that is commonly associated with niacin.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.