Kristen Zaier, ​​Plant-Based RD

How Much Niacin Do I Need?


  • RDA for Adult Females is 14 mg/d

  • RDA for Adult Males is 16 mg/d

  • ​Upper Safe Limit for Adults is 35 mg/d


Why Do I Need Niacin?


  • Niacin is critical for energy metabolism and it supports the health of skin, the nervous system and the digestive system


Plant-Based Sources


  • ​Good sources of niacin include leafy greens, legumes, whole grains, enriched cereals and nuts

  • We can also synthesize niacin from the amino acid tryptophan so a diet with adequate calories and protein will likely be adequate in niacin


Food

Niacin Content (mg)

Peanuts, 1 oz

3.8

Almonds, 1 oz

1

Peanut butter, 2 tbsp

4.3

Whole wheat bread, 1 slice

1.4

Lentils, cooked, 1 cup

2

Split peas, cooked, 1 cup

1.7

Potato, baked, large

4

Mushrooms, cremini, 1 cup

2.7

Peas, cooked, 1 cup

3.2

Kale, raw, 1 cup

0.7

Grape Nuts cereal, 1/2 cup

8.5

Total Whole Grain cereal, 3/4 cup

20

Brown rice, cooked, 1 cup

3


Deficiency Symptoms


  • Diarrhea, abdominal pain, vomitting

  • Inflamed, swollen, smooth, bright red tongue

  • Depression, apathy, fatigue, loss of memory

  • Dermatitis


Toxicity Symptoms


Toxicity from food is unknown but large doses from supplements and medications can cause the following:


  • Diarrhea, heartburn, nausea, ulcer, vomiting

  • Fainting, dizziness, fatigue, headache

  • "Niacin flush"- painful skin flush, hives, rash

  • Excessive sweating

Niacin

References used for all of the nutrient pages can be found at the bottom of the Nutrition Facts page. Click here.