Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

How much niacin should you take?

Since niacin can be used in different ways, talk to your health care provider about the best dosage for you.

Everyone needs a certain amount of niacin -- from food or supplements -- for the body to function normally. This amount is called the dietary reference intake (DRI), a term that is replacing the older and more familiar RDA (recommended daily allowance). For niacin, the DRIs vary with age and other factors.

  • 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

However, the ideal dosage of niacin depends on how you're using it. For instance, much higher doses -- 2 to 3 grams or more -- are used to treat high triglycerides.

Since niacin can upset your stomach, you might want to take it with food. To reduce flushing, your health care provider might recommend taking niacin along with aspirin, an NSAID painkiller, or an antihistamine for a few weeks until tolerance to the niacin develops.

Can you get niacin naturally from foods?

Niacin occurs naturally in many foods, including greens, meat, poultry, fish, and eggs, though in a fraction of the dose shown to achieve changes in cholesterol. Many products are also fortified with niacin during manufacture.

Savings Poll

How do you save money on vitamins and supplements?

View Results