104 Comments

  1. scstarman@hotmail.com' Pat
    May 21, 2015 @ 13:01:39

    Thank you. Good concise information.

  2. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    May 22, 2015 @ 13:43:31

    Thanks! 🙂

  3. jenna.diane@hotmail.com' Jenna
    Jun 15, 2015 @ 14:59:42

    Thank you. Very helpful…took my first one before doing enough research to know about the ‘flush’ and thought I was having some serious allergic reaction. This has calmed my nerves to know this is a normal reaction…. I feel there should be a warning on the label, but regardless, thank you for this information and I hope it ends soon.

  4. Fckboi219@aol.com' Nickolas
    Jul 21, 2015 @ 09:44:00

    Thank you so much I thought it was something serious, thanks for the reassurance, the information here was very clear & helpful

  5. Lancerlady27@gmail.com' Stephanie
    Aug 01, 2015 @ 14:13:25

    Yes thank you..almost thought I was gonna have to go to the er. I had a total thyroidectomy in April 15 and then also have NASH. So he put me on Niacin cause I can’t take statins with synthroid. This happened to me last night. I thought i was burning in hell. I am glad to have this information my doctor called me to tell me what to do to also take benedryl this helps her husband same thing happens to him. Cheers.

  6. ads@fashioniconinc.com' Mila
    Sep 25, 2015 @ 14:08:25

    50 mg twice a day and 100 mg are the same thing. ?

  7. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Sep 27, 2015 @ 07:17:15

    Yes, and no. If you are not use to the niacin flush, it is better to start slow. Taking 50 mg twice per day allows you to get use to the flushing effect, whereas if you take 100 mg per day, you will likely get a strong flush.

  8. kkwhitbey@gmail.com' Kristine Whitbey
    Oct 08, 2015 @ 01:06:23

    I have been taking 500 mg every night. My doctor did not start me out in low doses, so I had no idea what was about to happen to me. I had maybe 3 nights where it is was tolerable one night of almost no reaction, and then last night, I was to the point of calling 911. It was terrifying and i could not cool it down for nothing. it lasted 2 1/2 hours. My hair would touch my neck and I would loose my breath due to the pain. I was in the cold shower shivering and burning at the same time. I was in tears and scared to death. I was sure I was going to die. It was shear agony and fear. Laying in bed talking to myself out loud that I was going to be ok, and to calm down….over and over again. I may not have the nerves to take another pill again. So for doctors to say that this is just an ‘uncomfortable’ side effect is a bit sweet. For me my reaction was way too intense.

  9. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Oct 10, 2015 @ 09:13:30

    Hello, 500 mg to start is way too much! Starting with 50 mg is a very different experience, and then SLOWLY build up to 500 mg. Though your reaction was intense at that high dose, it was also benign.

  10. lillylil28@yahoo.com' lil
    Oct 14, 2015 @ 12:19:17

    I tried niacin a month ago and had a flush. When I had my second flush a month ago after that I was experience a weird feeling inside for 5 days . My eyes and nostrils burned a little and feeling of burning in my chest. Now tried again month later and had flush yesterday and feeling a little burning in chest today. Question do you think it could be because I took vitamin c with it. I don’t remember having this the first time I took. Really not sure whats going on.

  11. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Oct 14, 2015 @ 16:42:39

    Hi LiL! How much are you taking?

  12. thytersuffern@yahoo.com' Tracy
    Jan 07, 2016 @ 16:02:40

    Thank God for this website. This just happened to me 20 minutes ago. I contacted my family to let them know I was on my way to ER when I remembered a friend saying this happened to him when he took niacin. I had the presence of mind to consider new supplements I’m taking BEFORE racing to hospital. Read ingredients, and sure enough. (I’m seeing a new holistic practitioner who gave me a supplement that contains 100mg niacin.) Yours was the first website that came up in my Google search of “niacin flush.” It describes EXACTLY what just happened to me, including the progression from scalp to face to arms and below. FYI, the burning (which was sunburn-level painful) stopped at my arms and torso, BUT the hives/flush continued down my legs. Panic over — kind of. My practitioner is about to get an earful. Thank you, again.

  13. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Jan 08, 2016 @ 15:41:50

    Hi Tracy! Glad to help! I assure you, though uncomfortable and scary there is no danger to your health! You just needed to start with a lower dosage and slowly build up.

  14. apaul3123@yahoo.com' Amy
    Jan 23, 2016 @ 21:48:15

    I believe I am currently experiencing this problem. Although my eyes and neck are swollen and I have a rash that is oozing a little. Is this normal

  15. artemka01@yahoo.com' Artem
    Jan 28, 2016 @ 18:38:36

    WOW This is crazy! I took 50mg with about 50mg of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) not knowing that it would cause a flush. My face started burning and i tried to throw it up but couldn’t so i stuck my head under the sink and turned on cold water thinking that would help. When it got worse I thought I was going to die and almost went to ER but decided to look up online to see what could cause this, good thing I found your site on google, after about 15 min the burning sensation went all the way down to my feet. But seriously why would anyone want to take niacin when there’s niacinamide that’s a different form of b3 without the flushing side effect!

  16. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Jan 29, 2016 @ 09:32:37

    Hello, the health effects from niacin and niacinamide are different.

    “In some cases, niacinamide is used when people are concerned about or unable to tolerate the flushing effect. Also, those who have Insulin-Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (IDDM) are often told to use niacinamide instead. However, more recent studies are now showing that niacin may be safe even for those individuals. (See Insulin-Dependent Diabetes Mellitus and Niacin.)

    Niacinamide is NOT as effective as niacin in lowering cholesterol. However, both niacin and niacinamide are equally as effective in treating other conditions such as pellagra, schizophrenia, arthritis, and autoimmune disorders.”

    Read More: https://www.onlineholistichealth.com/supplements-2/vitamins/vitamin-b3-niacin.html

  17. tecgen@hotmail.com' Duane
    Feb 09, 2016 @ 17:27:34

    Is there an ideal time to take niacin? I presently am taking 1000 mg each night just before going to bed. I’d say that about 25% of the time I get the flushing sensation and thereby loose sleep. Should I take the dose around dinner time instead?

    Thank you

  18. This is How to Take Vitamin B3 for Depression | Workout at Home
    Feb 22, 2016 @ 13:04:03

    […] we’re talking about here is known as the ‘Niacin Flush’ and, as reported by http://www.onlineholistichealth.com, it’s nothing to be afraid […]

  19. This is How to Take Vitamin B3 for Depression – Real Food HQ
    Feb 22, 2016 @ 14:47:53

    […] we’re talking about here is known as the ‘Niacin Flush’ and, as reported by http://www.onlineholistichealth.com, it’s nothing to be afraid […]

  20. This is How to Take Vitamin B3 for Depression – NaturePonics, LLC.
    Feb 22, 2016 @ 17:33:41

    […] we’re talking about here is known as the ‘Niacin Flush’ and, as reported by http://www.onlineholistichealth.com, it’s nothing to be afraid […]

  21. Niacin Flush – Forever In Mom Genes
    Feb 23, 2016 @ 11:17:23

    […] is Niacin Flush. Never heard of it? Neither had I. It’s not dangerous, it’s just stupid looking. And […]

  22. kaitlyn.nelson@outlook.com' Kaitlyn Nelson
    Feb 27, 2016 @ 20:42:18

    After watching the documentary ” Food Nation ” last night and hearing the amazing things Niacin does for the body, I of course ran out and bought a bottle today. In the documentary, it says that 3000mg is a good dose for helping anxiety and depression. Well, thinking that 3000mg was the proper dose, I decided to start off with 1000mg. Bad idea. My face started burning, then my ears, neck, and down my arms. Panic mode set in. I was sure that death was knocking on my doorstep. I went to the walk-in clinic within an hour. I thought FOR SURE that I was having a terrible reaction and was going to die ( I owe part of that to my anxiety ). I should have read this before I took 1000mg! It has been about 5 hours since this whole ordeal, and I am still a little itchy and red, but not on the cusp of certain death ( or so I thought ). lesson learned. When my fear of Niacin calms down, I may try it again, but with a MUCH smaller dose.

  23. kacy.curran@gmail.com' Kathryn Curran
    Feb 29, 2016 @ 11:18:37

    I started taking a slow release Niacin on Feb 6th and because I knew of the “flush” I take it at night. Well, just like Duane, I too experienced “FLUSH” for the first time, last night, 3 weeks since I started taking it. I woke up about 2.5 hrs after taking it around 10 p.m. I felt very warm, it felt like I had was sunburned. I knew I had not been out in the sun but couldn’t figure out what was going on. I got up looked at myself in the mirror OMG I looked like a cooked lobster. Still not realizing what was going on I took my temperature but it was normal. I was hot but was still cold enough to not want to get into a cool shower. So I slathered aloe vera all over myself. It was weird because I was red only where a swim suit would not lay. My abdomen was not so red but my face was on fire, my neck, my arms, my chest, my upper back and my legs. I never itched but the fire feeling on my body was a little difficult to work through before I could fall back to sleep. This morning 10 hrs after my “dose” of 500mg I still have a pink tinge to my skin. I would like to continue taking it but am a little nervous about doing so. The only think I can think that may have sped up the release was I had a large glass of homemade fresh squeezed lemonade about 2-3 hrs before taking the Niacin. Please advise. Thanks PS: I found your site in the middle of the night when I was trying to figure out what was going on with me. I don’t have insurance so I try to do holistic whenever possible. Thank you so much for this site.

  24. vpunisherv@hotmail.com' Alyssa
    Mar 05, 2016 @ 05:20:32

    As far as potential liver issues, do you think its safer to take niacin 2 times a day rather than 3 or does it not matter?

  25. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Mar 05, 2016 @ 08:10:08

    3000 mg is WAY to high a dose to begin with, and unlikely that a dose that high is ever needed. For depression, I would suggest inositol. Check this out: https://www.onlineholistichealth.com/inositol-deficiency-linked-to-depression/

  26. Kellirushek@gmail.com' Kelli
    Mar 23, 2016 @ 01:17:30

    Like many others on here, I thought I was having a reaction like Will Smith in the movie Hitch. I was totally unprepared and took 500mgs of Niacin on an empty stomach like an idiot. Thank you for assuring me I am not dying. I am adding Niacin and B12 for metabolic purposes. Would you suggest that I now lower the dose or keep at 500 since I already had one flush? Any advice would be helpful, thank you!

  27. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Mar 23, 2016 @ 13:29:05

    Hello Kelli, Yes I can certainly understand how that could be scary! I would recommend that you decrease the dosage to at least 100 mg for at least a week before SLOWLY increasing the dosage by 50 mg. until your desired dosage. If you still experience the flush at lower dosages, then there is no need to increase further. I hope that helps!

  28. Queenofhearts8118@yahoo.com' Susan
    Mar 23, 2016 @ 22:34:33

    Does Niacin cause red bloodshot eyes? I started taking it 6 days ago. The second day I had extreme stomach cramps and nausea. Thought it was the flu.

  29. mugatea@hotmail.com' Jamie Shanks
    Mar 24, 2016 @ 13:47:30

    Hey, thanks for the article. I started Niacin last week using 500mg doses always after food. I’d take it just after lunch once a day and would flush and did this for a few days then started twice a day. I havent flushed since and I’ve started taking 1000mg and still no flush. I’ve just tried 1500mg after my dinner and waiting for a flush but I dont think it’s happening. What does this mean? I need more? Does the flush matter that much?

  30. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Mar 25, 2016 @ 09:28:51

    Hi Susan! How much did you take?

  31. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Mar 25, 2016 @ 09:48:24

    Just to confirm, you are taking niacin and not niacinamide right? 1500 mg of niacin is certainly the lower end of a therapeutic dosage. Many things can factor in regarding if you experience a flush or not. The amount or type of food (salad vs a protein) consumed, how hydrated you are, and even the amount of stress you are experiencing at any given moment. There are 2 theories of thought as to why we flush or not, and they are actually the exact opposite of each other. 1. If you do not flush, then you are deficient and require a higher dosage. 2. If you do not flush then you have plenty of niacin in your system. As you can see, that alone is very confusing because how do you tell which category you fall in. However those theories do not take in account some of the reasons for flushing or not that I have just given. Further, it doesn’t take in account the amount of the niacin that you are taking in. If you are just starting taking niacin at low dosages such as 50 – 100 mg, and do not flush, then increasing your dosages is the logical thing to do. However in your case, at a much higher dosage, for the time being, it is likely that you have sufficient niacin in your system (given food intake, hydration and stress levels have remained consistent). I hope this helps!

  32. godbe4me2@hotmail.com' Angela
    Mar 28, 2016 @ 22:40:14

    I took a prenatal with 20 MG for 2 years with no problems. Then my pharmacy stopped carrying it and changed my script to a similar vitamin. For the last 8 months I have taken the pill with 20 MG niacin as well however I breakout every single time unless I take it at midnight when I don’t have anything to eat for 3 hours before or after. I’ve tried several times to take in the morning but the rash got worse and spread to my arms. My body refuses to adjust to such anything low dose. My new prenatal has only 1.8 MG. Hopefully I can live flush free now.

  33. nightfire6662001@msn.com' G Marshall
    Apr 01, 2016 @ 15:46:09

    Dr. Michelle Kmiec

    Great post glad I found this. Was a little worryed with my face burning up. Think I will start taking my niacin b3 before bed. Instead of before work im not keen on a super red face haha.

  34. wilensel@gmail.com' Eli
    Apr 01, 2016 @ 17:45:41

    Hi Dr. Kmiec,
    I know someone who is taking niacin to cleanse illegal drugs out of their system (THC) in order to pass random drug tests at work. I feel this is nonsense, and my wife and I have been telling him to stop taking it because he is in pain when he takes it. What do you think? I just don’t see how niacin can work as a detox. He takes 500mg twice per day. Can this harm his liver?

  35. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Apr 02, 2016 @ 15:20:13

    Hello, the drugs in his system are more likely to harm his liver. It sounds like your friend should seriously consider seeking professional help. Good luck.

  36. Definitely_maybe94@hotmail.con' Davey
    Apr 09, 2016 @ 12:21:49

    I have been taking this to help with cocaine addiction and wellbeing (loads of good reviews on its effectiveness )

    Any how like a fool i took 2500mg in one hit,

    Red all over and flushing like crazy

    I also thought i was going to be brown bread.

    It went after an hour and then feelt tired ..

    Ill start on 500mg next time!

  37. Sotx1@yahoo.com' Scott McDonald
    Apr 25, 2016 @ 22:08:26

    How about the non flushing niacin 500mg capsules? Are these good to take to help lower cholesterol

    Thank you

  38. water.kris@comcast.net' Kris Williams
    Apr 27, 2016 @ 17:25:12

    Hello! I just took my first time-release niacin tablet today. The dose was 250 MG, and I did experience some flushing, but nothing crazy. Anyway, WebMD suggests the following dosages:

    Children: between 2-16 milligrams daily, depending on age
    Men: 16 milligrams daily
    Women: 14 milligrams daily
    Women (pregnant): 18 milligrams daily
    Women (breastfeeding): 17 milligrams daily
    Maximum daily intake for adults of all ages: 35 milligrams daily

    Those dosages are very low, compared to what I plan to take (250 MG for 20 days, then 500 MG daily after that). What do you think? Thank you for your input!

  39. duganbkind2animals@gmail.com' Linda
    Apr 29, 2016 @ 18:00:14

    I eat Nutritional yeast which is loaded with B vitamins so I also get a flush when I eat 3 or 4 TBS of yeast at a time. I don’t really mind the flush b/c it does go away after about 20 minutes and Iike knowing I am getting a good load of B vitamins everyday in my diet.

  40. denise_shanetrujillo@outlook.com' Denise
    May 02, 2016 @ 22:55:39

    Hi Dr
    Please help,I have Cronic migraines and also Cronic back and Sciatica in both legs after an accident catching a patient falling.Have had major surgery and had really bad infection with that my scar tissue attached itself to my spinal cord I am on Valium 5mg and Lortab 5/325 mg.I am desperate to rid myself of these migraines and see if the niacin will also help with my other pain .I drink plenty of water a day 4 32oz cups a day.its all I drink.
    Thankyou for any help.

  41. viola@rawpassion.co.uk' Viola Woolcott (RAW PASSION)
    May 06, 2016 @ 08:58:08

    Hi there

    I started taking 100mg 2 nights ago and within 10 minutes I was as red as my cardigan. It started on top of my head and back of my neck. It felt fine. Nothing to be concerned about for me personally. Heart racing included.

    Last night I took it again and nothing happened at all. Very odd. Lets see what tonight brings 🙂

  42. gizmo3311@gmail.com' brett culley
    May 07, 2016 @ 18:56:13

    i just took 500 mg and i flushed 15 min after i took it,about 45 min later the flush started wearing off, so i assume taking 1,000 mg would be ok tomorrow split up for 1 day,i suffer from extreme severe depression and i am also on lexapro.is it safe to take these together?my goal is to use the niacin to stop the depression, any suggestions would be appreciated.

  43. bvedia@vt.edu' Britney
    May 15, 2016 @ 10:51:18

    My doctor prescribed niacin and told me I’d be on an extended release one so as to not get the “flush” I had no idea what she was talking about. I have been taking the pill for about two weeks and hadn’t ever had this elusive “flush”. Today I took it like always and all of a sudden I am turning bright red. Luckily mine doesn’t itch, it just feels like a sunburn. It’s been going on for about 30 minutes so we’ll see how much longer til it clears.

  44. alroy301@gmail.com' Allen
    May 21, 2016 @ 23:01:56

    If you don’t get a flush, are you getting any benefit from Niacin? I have been taking 150mg 3 times daily, 1 out of 3 times I may get a flush. I am increasing the dosage every week until I’m taking 1000mg daily.

  45. christine.jargick@gmail.com' Christine
    May 25, 2016 @ 20:13:45

    I take time release 500 mg niacin. Sometimes I still flush on the time release pills, sometimes not. Right now, I am coming of my second flush of the day. I didn’t know that you can flush twice from one pill? It’s been several hours since I took the pill.

  46. jouellete@yahoo.com' Jeff
    May 28, 2016 @ 15:22:33

    is 1000 mg a day to safe?

  47. Surfbetty73@yahoo.com' Lisa
    Jun 07, 2016 @ 21:42:50

    Thank goodness for this article. I went off all psychotropics and started a niacin regime four months ago. I started at 250 mg and after 2 months went up to 500mg where I planned to stay for a while. I’ve been on 500 mg for two months and tonight had a flush for the first time. I thought it was a sunburn but I don’t go in the sun. I thought it was roseacea which I have a very very mild case of but then I felt effects on my neck, chest and arms and got very itchy. I was getting more and more uncomfortable. I looked in the mirror and was bright red and almost swollen from the waist up. I thought I was having an allergic reaction and I thought seriously about runnning to my house alarm pad to summon an ambulance. Then I found this article. The whole thing resolved in about 15 minutes. I can’t imagine why I would have a flush after two months at the same dosage level. Very scary. Thank you so much for calming my fears.

  48. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Jun 09, 2016 @ 09:11:51

    Glad to help!!

  49. Karafleming@me.com' Kara
    Jun 09, 2016 @ 09:44:56

    I took nutritional yeast for the first time today and within about 15 minutes I started tingling and then was bright red over my face, under my armpits, down my arms, on my thighs and on my knees. I panicked thinking it was an allergic reaction and was ready to call an ambulance. I have never experienced anything like this in my life. I even sent photos to a friend who is an ER doctor asking if I should get to the hospital asap. Thank goodness I found your article. I am about 30 minutes into my flush. Its about the same, no worse. Im drinking lots of water trying to flush it out of my system. Thanks again.

  50. tannsummers@yahoo.co.uk' Tracey Ann Summers
    Jun 23, 2016 @ 13:45:41

    Hey I suffer from depression really bad and anti depressants scare me cause I’ve been elegiac to a few, so I found niacin but could only find it in 500mg and I’ve just had my second one on the second day. I know it’s a strong dose to start on, is it ok to keep going with that and the double in when I’m used to it. I really couldn’t find a loser dose off the flush version, I was desperate to start this to help my mental health. Any advise? Thanks xx

  51. mleahy17@hotmail.com' Marie L.
    Jun 30, 2016 @ 10:41:19

    I have a number of health issues, with major issues in detoxifying. I have the MTHFR gene deficiency, homozygous for C677t, as well as the another gene that is specific for mold illness and detoxifying. I have been diagnosed with POTS, PVCs, tachycardia and bradycardia, and mold illness, among other things. I had a health practitioner suggest that I take niacin to help with my detoxification – taking it in small amounts until I flush to determine the correct dosage; however, she is not well versed with POTS and PVCs, etc. I am afraid of what flushing could do with my arrhythmia problems. I would appreciate any advice.

  52. hertogjan88@yahoo.com' steve
    Jul 07, 2016 @ 23:37:11

    well thats all a lie, literally just got discharged from the hospital after having to get a shot so i didnt die from 5mgs of the whole foods brand niacin. sooooo

  53. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Jul 08, 2016 @ 07:16:03

    Hello Steve, sorry to hear this though 5 mg is an extremely small amount for example…fish has around 14 mg and chicken around 22 mg of vitamin B3 (niacin). Sounds like there is a lot more to your story that I’d love for you to share. What type of niacin was it? What else was in the niacin. What meds (if any) do you take. What is the condition of your health? Having a severe reaction to such a small amount is like having an allergic reaction to a glass of water. So I would love to hear more of this. Thanks!

  54. sandycackley@hotmail.com' Sandy
    Jul 12, 2016 @ 13:31:10

    HI!!!

    I found this website AFTER my $100 E.D. visit today. My Niacin supplement directions state that two capsules should be taken on an empty stomach. They are time-release, but I do not recall the dosage.

    I was looking for an energy boost, as Mt. Dew, chai tea and Monster no long help to keep me going. A full time job, blending of homes as my husband and I just moved last week and are bringing 4 children together (we have been married for 2 years and just found a home for all of us to live together for the first time), very little family support and working on changes to custody, I need a supplement to help me stay awake and be more productive! E.D. gave me 4 chewable baby aspirin around 11:15 AM, and sent me back to work. Now I just feel like a wet rag with LESS energy than I had this morning before (I thought I was going to burst into flames!!).

    I will certainly try a lower dosage of niacin (after I’m over being traumatized from today!) Any suggestions for natural energy supplements that won’t end up costing an additional $100 and a trip to the E.D.?!?!

    Thank you!!

  55. travisstaples@netscape.net' Travis
    Jul 17, 2016 @ 21:50:28

    Hi, I’ve been taking 1500 mg of niacin for like a year now. 3 x 500 mg a day. My doctor recommended it to me because of something in my blood work being high.

    The niacin had a side effect of curing my acne. I use to get only 1 or 2 pimples, but they were the deep cystic kind that no topicals could cure and I tired many drugs and none worked.

    However, I’m noticing I’m no longer getting the flush. Maybe 1 time a day instead of 3. One time a day hasn’t been enough in the past. If I forget to take 3 a day my acne comes back in a few days. I’m afraid if I don’t keep on getting the flush effect my acne will come back. I’ve tried non flush and it doesn’t work for my acne. Best guess I have for why it works is the flush expands your veins and arteries improving blood flow and that allows my body to take care of my face on its own.

    So how can I keep getting the flush? Does it synergize with anything else? I’m afraid to take more than 1500 mg because I’ve read 2000 mg daily can cause liver damage. Any ideas? Any other way to simulate a flush effect?

  56. melaniejk7@gmail.com' Melanie McCluney
    Jul 19, 2016 @ 19:26:03

    What lead me to this site is googling ‘i sweat when I eat an apple’ 🙂
    Could this be linked to the flush I get? Apples are the only food it happens with. Is it a Niacin flush?
    Thanks, Melanie

  57. steve5149az@gmail.com' Steve in AZ
    Jul 21, 2016 @ 11:39:32

    Thank you for this article. I’ve experienced sunburn symptoms for the last week. Then afterincreasing Niacin from 100mg to about 700mg the symptoms hit me hard. It’s summer here in AZ, but I have a high sun tolerance, take precautions and drink lots of water. Sun burn would be a new condition for me. This article helps and I will follow your advice on backing down the mg, and keeping the water flowing….

  58. Jsreciepts@gmail.com' Jeff
    Aug 01, 2016 @ 21:08:02

    Male, 6’4″, 240 lbs, I took 1500 mg today for my first time after watching that same video so many here have that said 3000 mg was a good start, and I will take that next time. My first experience, the flush took about 70 minutes to hit me, but it was over within 20 minutes. I personally liked it. Looking forward to a stronger flush. I’m taking it for depression. We’ll see how it works.

  59. katekyoshi@reborn.com' Josh
    Aug 20, 2016 @ 01:14:49

    I’m a younger, smaller guy (5’9″, 160 lbs) and I recently started taking 500mg Niacin (the nicotinic acid version) on an empty stomach because I’m a fitness buff and it’s purported to increase growth hormone release for recovery. The flush starts within minutes and lasts for about 10 minutes, and I don’t mind that…but the stomach pain is severe. Doubles me over for several minutes in pain. I have to take it on an empty stomach for the intended effect, but I’m wondering if it’s hurting my stomach or liver. How could I tell? Would graduating from lower doses help ease the pain? The dosage used in the GH study was 1000mg, so I’m only taking half…

    By the way, anyone taking this as an anti-depressant is taking the wrong version. The version you’d want is inositol hexanicotinate, the no-flush version. Although I guess technically you could try increasing growth hormone production to feel happier and more energetic. You could also just buy Inositol since it is sold as its own supplement.

  60. Niacin Flush Helps You Detox
    Aug 22, 2016 @ 12:24:42

    […] out it was niacin flush, which is very common and natural when taking something high in niacin (vitamin B3) such as vitamin […]

  61. askph@yahoo.com' Cherry
    Aug 23, 2016 @ 20:47:25

    Hi doc, i am planning to take niacin to lower my cholesterol instead of taking cholestad. However, I read that niacin damage the liver? Would love to hear your opinion on this. Thanks for the wonderful write up. I have been taking a supp which contains 90mg of niacin and have been experiencingthe symptoms described above. Know I know what causes it!! 🙂

  62. kandiepalmer@hotmail.com' Candace
    Aug 23, 2016 @ 21:25:14

    So my husband had a bottle of niacin ( 500 mg) laying around and I researched it before taking it. I was reading about niacin helping with cholesterol, and digestion, etc. I had an episode where I flushed all the way to my toes for about 20minutes will cut my dose in half tomorrow. Thanks for the article would have called 911 if I hadn’t read this.

  63. Ibarrafernando19@yahoo.com' Fernando
    Aug 25, 2016 @ 01:21:30

    Hello Dr. Kmiec,
    Would Niacin help treat generalized anxiety? What does would you recommend to start? Feeling hot, burning sensation sometimes can turn into panic attack. Also, does the flush effect only happens right after taking the Niacin? I want to make sure so that I could be in a safe control environment incase the flush symptoms turns into panic mode. Thank you.

  64. pamaro3521@yahoo.com' Deborah Abbott
    Aug 31, 2016 @ 15:38:42

    I’m taking 250 mg of Niacin ER and each week until I get to 1000 Mg’s to lower my cholesterol along with 2000 Mg’s of fish oil. So I would like to know why the ER is not effective?

  65. emmajvee@hotmail.com' Emma Veenendaal
    Sep 03, 2016 @ 04:15:36

    My goodness, this just happened to me, it was so intense and such a fast onset I too thought I was having some sort of major episode!!! I was told to take niacin to help counteract symptoms from taking Methylgaurd, but was not warned this could happen.
    The redness and heat is from the top of my head to my toes. The PANIC was real, however I had the sense to do some quick “panic” searching on the web and found this site! THANKYOU SO SO MUCH! The panic has subsided even if the heat hasn’t!!

    Thank goodness for

  66. Sugartooth@yahoo.com' Cal
    Sep 17, 2016 @ 16:57:54

    The Niacin flush is the releasing of radiation from the body. One can test this by exposing one part of the body to the sun, then watch as the flush will focus on that area. Some call the Niacin flush a reverse sunburn, which is an accurate statement, but we accumulate radiation from many sources over time and the Niacin flush will release accumulated radiation from many sources starting with the most recent first.

  67. mzvelvet@hotmail.com' Rosie
    Sep 22, 2016 @ 13:44:30

    I tried niacin and there was a flush that lasted for about 20 mins, which i did not mind. But about 1.5 hours later i was soo itchy, if i had sandpaper handy i would have been scratching with that it lasted for about 4 hours. It happened 2x the second time took 2 anti-histamines beforehand which did not touch it. It seems most ppl get a little itchy, while others it is extreme, what is happening for the ones of us with extreme itchiness? i took 1,000mg. I understand I could start at a lower dose, but I am curious exactly why the extreme itchiness.

  68. billandbentheflowerpotmen@gmail.com' Jami
    Sep 26, 2016 @ 18:54:57

    I can´t find the answer I´m looking for, to my question which is: what is the benefit of the flushing its self? Over time one builds up tolerance to niacin, and the flushing doesn´t appear, is niacin equally beneficial without the flush? Or is it the flushing that is the only sign of the opening of blood vessels, which is one of the main purposes of the flush? Do you understand where I´m going with this?

  69. Marieacarucci@yahoo.com' Mariea carucci
    Oct 16, 2016 @ 14:56:36

    Yes , I’m taking niacin er at 500 mg for very high triglycerides I do flush it’s uncomfortable at times , it’s worked for me in the pass , but when I stoped my tryglycerides went spring back up , does this mean I wil always be on niacin along with fish oil

  70. dwlloyd810@gmail.com' David Lloyd
    Oct 24, 2016 @ 22:16:19

    I’m surprised that the Niacin flush is generally considered a negative thing. I started taking Niacin because I was getting severe muscle pain, memory problems, and difficulty focusing, from every anti-cholesterol medicine my doctor tried. However, once I tried taking Niacin, I frankly keep taking it because I LOVE how it makes me feel. I enjoy the invigorating feeling of the “flushing” side-effect, and I gradually increased my dose over time as the flushing effect decreased. I now take 4,000 mg daily (which I’ve promised my doctor will be my maximum dose). The niacin flush feels wonderful, and on product websites where others have discussed their experiences with various niacin supplements, my experience is NOT uncommon. Many people, like me, find the effect invigorating, and even marginally euphoric, as I do.

  71. dwlloyd810@gmail.com' David Lloyd
    Oct 24, 2016 @ 22:34:55

    (added to previous comment)

    I was surprised as I read the article that such low doses are recommended to start. I did start “low” at 500 mg per day, and increasing the dose 500 mg per week until I was at my original target of 2,000 mg per day, which was the level that an article I read in the Journal of the American Medical Association mentioned was optimal for control of cholesterol. As I stated in my earlier comment, I never found the flush unpleasant, and in fact, when it did start decreasing, I kept increasing my dose so the flushing would not go away. At 4,000 mg per day, which I’ve been taking for several years, I usually don’t notice any flushing, but I have found I can increase the likelihood of experiencing it if I eat something sour like lemon, with something hot, like jalapeno or cayenne peppers. I also use a lot of ground flax seed. I try to get 4 tbs per day, and I can often experience the very pleasant sensation of flushing when I have a mixture of yogurt with ground flax seed, cherries, and lemon juice shortly after taking my Niacin.

  72. debbiejwash@gmail.com' Debs
    Oct 29, 2016 @ 09:23:02

    It is best to take Niacinamide and not Niacin. Niacinamide does NOT the flush.. google the difference

  73. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Oct 29, 2016 @ 11:35:43

    Hi Debs! Yes you are correct (with one there is a flush and with the other there is not) however there is a big difference in health benefits. Furthermore, niacinamide is far more toxic to the liver over time.

  74. Zantrex Black Review: 21 BIG Reasons It Might Be Worth It | Supplement Critique
    Nov 01, 2016 @ 02:36:49

    […] The other common side effect is known as “The Niacin Flush”. […]

  75. geortwinky@netscape.net' Char
    Nov 01, 2016 @ 13:21:24

    I’m taking 500mg niacin as prescribed by my dr. I’m trying to follow her suggestion but I get a burning rash all over my body. It’s really horrible, now I’ve cut them in half and still get the flush which I’m willing to handle but the rash is difficult when I go out. I feel like I have alligator skin.

  76. master7727@gmail.com' Eddie
    Nov 13, 2016 @ 09:51:56

    I read that niacin is good to increase the good cholesterol HDL. Anyone here try it for this? Is so, did it increase your HDL? Thanks

  77. Dr. Michelle Kmiec
    Nov 13, 2016 @ 10:14:30

    Hi Eddie, Yes there is much research supporting the claim that niacin increases HDL levels. Speaking for myself, I found that claim to be accurate.

  78. jamierenecowan@outlook.com' Jamie Cowan
    Nov 18, 2016 @ 10:57:08

    I read that taking niacin has a lot of health benefits. I bought a bottle of it before I read about dosages. They are 500 mg. So like many on here, I experienced a very harsh flush. At first, it was pretty bad and I had no idea what was going on but then it started getting better. I have continued to take this amount daily and have not received the flush since the first time. Is there a limit to how much you can take of this stuff?

  79. sheila_cooper@outlook.com' Sheila Cooper
    Dec 13, 2016 @ 16:13:04

    (EDITED) I ran across Niacin as a way to help with the side effects of getting off of depression meds, like Lexapro. Fortunately, I did a bit of research, before taking it, and read about the ” flush”. Thank God, because I bought GNC brand 250 mgs, cut it into 1/4 pieces and even that gave me a wicked flush. I can’t imagine what it would have felt like had I taken the entire pill! I’ve been taking 1/4 pill (62.5 mgs) twice a day now and have been doing much better in regard to withdrawal and it has helped give me a more restful sleep. My anxiety levels have also substantially decreased! Niacin, so far, has been a godsend. Now, I’m finding out that it has so many other benefits, as well. (Healthy hair and skin, weight, digestion, sugar levels, acne, cholesterol…etc.) I definitely plan to continue taking it. My only concern is how much is a safe level to work up to, as I’ve read about liver damage. Does anyone know how much is too much? Some on this site are taking thousands of mgs per day. Not sure if the amount varies by height and weight either. If anyone can give me some advice, I’d truly appreciate it!

  80. crosierbob@aol.com' Bob Crosier
    Dec 18, 2016 @ 20:59:04

    I take niacin to get the flush. I figure that if the largest organ ,the skin, is flooded with blood then all my other organs are getting the same benefit and I love what it does for my skin too. I am 81 and have used this for many years.

  81. trianglec3@gmail.com' Steve
    Jan 12, 2017 @ 07:38:35

    Well a novice tried 15.00mg to start. Wow, that was a flush. Glad to find a place to cool my nerves while going through the process

  82. kjohnson@prairieweb.com' Karen
    Jan 26, 2017 @ 10:43:14

    I have been taking time release Niacin in the form of nicotinic acid for several years. I take 1000mg (per doctor) after supper each night. Suddenly last night after taking my supplements including the niacin, I had a light rash on my arms, thighs, legs, shoulders. Didn’t itch, didn’t feel hot. I am assuming it was the niacin since that is one of the side effects, buy why did it happen after several years??

  83. jammyjagad@yahoo.co.uk' Jane
    Jan 31, 2017 @ 10:46:02

    Hi how much would you recommend taking for rheumatoid arthritis I took one today 500mg and I got the flush and I didn’t like it

  84. drmichelle@onlineholistichealth.com' Online Holistic Health
    Jan 31, 2017 @ 15:10:17

    Hi Jane! 500 mg is way too much to take especially at first. I am sure your flush was quite strong! I would suggest trying it again, but this time only 100 mg. And remember to drink lots of water.

  85. jammyjagad@yahoo.co.uk' Jane
    Jan 31, 2017 @ 15:49:06

    Thanks for replying should I stick on 100mg or gradually increase

  86. drmichelle@onlineholistichealth.com' Online Holistic Health
    Feb 01, 2017 @ 15:37:42

    Exactly, start with 100 mg and slowly increase.

  87. jammyjagad@yahoo.co.uk' Jane
    Feb 02, 2017 @ 10:18:48

    My dog has arthritis can I give him it as well and if so how much should I give him

  88. seraone@yahoo.com' Sarah
    Feb 08, 2017 @ 17:29:48

    I started taking a product called B-Minus by SeekingHealth and it has 50mg of niacin in it. I took it for one week, same as always on an empty stomach in the morning before work. On the 7th day, I took it a little later once I got to work, and within 20 minutes got the flush. It was a horrible feeling! I never had experience it before. I was red from my shoulders to my finger tips, I was on fire, my scalp was very itchy, my neck and face were blotchy. I am someone who is cold 24/7 and this was a very unwelcome burning sensation. It lasted about 2 hours before completely resolved. It seems like that’s such a low dose to get the flush. Is niacin something that builds up in the system and that’s why I got the flush or was it because I took it on an empty stomach? I am fearful to take it again, even with food because I never want to feel that uncomfortable. Is it possible to have an allergy to it? I am hetero MTHFR, homo VDR/MTRR and the other supplements I am taking right now are 15mg zinc, probiotic, D3+K2, fish oil, adeno b12 and folinic acid.

  89. vickyvarona@gmail.com' Victoria
    Feb 14, 2017 @ 18:36:53

    I had this morning for the first time 100mg of Niacin on an empty stomach. After 10 minutes, I was walking and felt an excruciating pain in my stomach. I almost fainted and it took me a while to feel ok to walk. Has this happened to anyone else?

  90. fungez@aol.com' Michele
    Feb 16, 2017 @ 21:35:29

    Oh yeah, the first time I took niacin my first symptom was a terrible pain in my stomach, then I got freezing cold, felt like I was going to faint and almost threw up. I took way too much (250 mg) on an empty stomach. Awful experience, but I take niacin now and it’s fine.

  91. Tolersemail@yahoo.com' Dakota
    Feb 25, 2017 @ 15:01:11

    Last time I flushed I took 4000 mg. It was pretty intense. Niacin is a great way to flush your system for a urine analysis. I wouldn’t suggest taking 4000 at once, but if you feel so inclined drink alot of water. 2-3 gallons in a couple of hours is the norm for me. Luckily I’ve gone through rehabilitation and I no longer need to flush for drug screens.

  92. jadeaa54345@yahoo.com' Jessie
    Mar 06, 2017 @ 18:06:42

    Hi I am taking folic acid 15 mg and b complex with vitamin c for immune support. I took it for a month with no probe then today my skin burned me all day. How soon after I stop the vitamins should this sensation stop? I want to stop it for a bit it’s too uncomfortable

  93. drmichelle@onlineholistichealth.com' Online Holistic Health
    Mar 07, 2017 @ 09:12:24

    Hello Jesse!

    15 mg of folic acid along with a B complex (I do not know the amounts in your complex, also most complexes have non-flushing niacin (niacinamide) in their formula) and vitamin C should not cause a “burning” skin reaction. Aside from niacin, which can have a flushing effect for minutes to an hour, the supplements you mentioned are extremely benign, safe and very mild. I would need to more info regarding the supplements, amounts and exactly what is in them including fillers, and how often you took them, etc.. in order to better answer your question because it sounds very unusual.

    Hope you feel better soon!

  94. theresemum@gmail.com' Therese Harmsworth
    Apr 04, 2017 @ 22:12:49

    Hi,
    Could you please help me…..
    I am wanting to get pregnant and am currently taking 2500 mg of niacin a day and feeling great, less stress etc
    Am I still able to take this whilst pregnant?
    Thank – you so much for your response 🙂
    Therese

  95. hygienist48169@hotmail.com' Marlene
    Apr 09, 2017 @ 09:48:33

    Could Niatain cause puffy flaking eyelids and swelling? My facial skin now feels rough and not supple and soft.

  96. sarah222morrow@aol.com' Sarah Morrow
    Apr 24, 2017 @ 21:56:29

    I’ve never known anyone who was harmed by a niacin flush. All that’s happening is that your blood vessels are dilating. And some toxins that may have been lying around in your cells are being flushed out. It’s a good thing. You may be itchy and uncomfortable for a few minutes (to a half hour), but you’ll be fine.

    Doctors who prescribe niacin, and stores that sell it, really should warn people: If you take enough to cause a flush, you’ll turn beet red. Your skin will itch. It’ll be uncomfortable. You’ll feel hot when flushing, then feel cold afterward.

    It’s not that any of these things are bad. They really aren’t. They’re not allergic reactions. When you have a niacin flush, you’re not having a heart attack or stroke. The “flush” is just the vitamin doing what it’s supposed to do.

    As a side note, some of us have learned to actually like “flushing.” When I take enough niacin to cause a flush, it does feel uncomfortable for a few minutes, and my skin feels itchy, but then it feels good to know that toxins are being flushed into my bloodstream. When my skin starts turning red, I usually take some charcoal in water, which absorbs toxins and can carries them out of the body.

  97. Sequanjackson@gmail.com' Sequan Jackson
    Apr 29, 2017 @ 14:40:50

    I took a 250 mg pill yesterday and 1 today of the niacin dietary supplement time released…… Yesterday I was feeling fine today not so well with side effects. So I started researching and discovered that I may have took over the limit. Would I be okay

  98. Mojganalavi9@gmail.com' Mojgan
    May 16, 2017 @ 08:27:12

    I toke 3 NoFlush 500 mg every day for 2 weeks I was good and yesterday I took Normal 500mg I had very bad Flush for 2 hour .is NoFlush one is okay to take?

  99. Christan17@yahoo.con' Christan fry
    Jun 05, 2017 @ 12:38:56

    I just took 400 mg and flushed. I deal with anxiety anyways, but for about a minute I had trouble breathing. Then about 5 minutes later the redness came. I’ve read through all the comments and did not see anyone talk about any breathing problems. I thought I was going to have to go to the hospital.

  100. cbaxter@dacbeachcroft.com' Carol
    Jun 09, 2017 @ 02:54:21

    Hi, how much should you take to reduce cholesterol. I am currently taking about 800mg. this is spread out during the day at 100mg a time. If you don’t get the flush is it still working.

    thanks.

  101. gerrysawyer8@gmail.com' Gerry Sawyer
    Jun 21, 2017 @ 00:42:14

    I’ve been taking for about 2 weeks 500 mg. Tonight I had major flush, heart rate 100 beats per min. Read toxicity can cause heart attack and liver damage. Would this be accurate?

  102. drmichelle@onlineholistichealth.com' Online Holistic Health
    Jun 21, 2017 @ 07:48:46

    Hi Gerry! Let me start by saying that liver damage is way more of a concern with non-flushing niacin, and even then with extremely high dosages over an extended period of time. The dosage you are stating is very low. It’s important to remember the niacin flush is a harmless side effect that can last from minutes to an hour. Because it can be uncomfortable and a bit unnerving if you are not used to it can cause anxiety resulting in an elevated heart rate. If you have any concern about the effect, then simply lower your dose until you feel ready to increase it again. There is no rush to health. And it is always a good idea o drink LOTS of clean filtered water, especially during the flush.

    Hope that helps!

  103. Gonzothegrape@gmail.com' John
    Jun 22, 2017 @ 19:38:58

    I think the term “flush” does not satidfactorily describe the sensation. I was prescribed Niaspan in 2012 and my doctor warned me that I might feel a little flush. It feels like your skin is on fire. I have been off it for a few years and took two last night as my chloreserol was up again (injury keeping me from running and had forgotten how uncomfortable). I sat at the table, bright red, ice packs on each arm for 30 minutes. The best was that I guess 1 of the 2 did not go all the way down until an hour later because an hour and a half later, I got to go through it again. Started behind ears and within 5 minutes, my entire body was burning. 30 minutes later it was mostly gone.

  104. drmichelle@onlineholistichealth.com' Online Holistic Health
    Jun 22, 2017 @ 21:21:51

    Hi John! Yes, it can certainly happen like that. Sounds like you took too high a dosage without building up to it – drinking lots of water helps as well. It happened to me once like that too 🙂

    Wishing you the best of health!

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