Is Niacin REALLY a Vitamin – Book Excerpt of the Week

Last week we said NIACIN was the Captain America of the Energy Drink Ingredient Avengers – one of the BEST energy drink ingredients – because it participates in numerous reactions to form ATP (the chemical form of energy) in the human body. But is niacin really a vitamin?

Vitamins are essential to life and, by definition, something we need to get from the diet because we can’t make on our own. Did you know the human body can MAKE niacin? As this book excerpt explains, tryptophan and protein are the key ingredients for this magic.

Niacin is still considered a vitamin because we can make some but we can’t make enough to survive and thrive.

The amount of niacin our bodies can make in a day from the amino acid tryptophan is not the full amount we’d need in a day, but it helps. Moreover, our bodies cannot make tryptophan: it is an ESSENTIAL amino acid, meaning we have to get from the diet.

STAY TUNED every Monday for more book excerpts and the science behind energy drink ingredients.  Stay tuned for next week’s book excerpt as we continue our page-by-page exploration through the Energy Drink Guide.

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What Niacin Does – Book Excerpt of the Week 

Niacin is my FAVORITE vitamin! Niacin doesn’t “give you energy” like caffeine, but if caffeine is the Iron Man of Energy Drink Ingredient Avengers then Niacin is Captain America.

Niacin is like that person everyone wants at their party. It participates in hundreds of reactions and thus is welcome all over the body.

The body loves niacin so much it creates a little bit on its own, just in case you don’t get enough from the diet.

Corn loves niacin so much, there’s a protein in corn that has niacin on lockdown.

In previous book excerpt posts, we proposed that if B-vitamins were all superheroes and you were assembling your dream squad for an energy drink, you’d want riboflavin and thiamin in the mix.

Thiamin is a crucial part of how the body turns glucose into energy.

Riboflavin feeds a giant beast of a reaction in the body which leads to the release of huge amounts of energy.

Thiamin and riboflavin are great, but niacin is even better. Here are two strong reasons why:

1.Niacin is even better than thiamin and riboflavin because of the sheer number of reactions in which it participates. Niacin is part of over 200 reactions in the body, most of them involving the production of ENERGY.

2.Niacin helps with the first step of alcohol metabolism. This is the step where ethanol is converted to acetaldehyde via the enzyme alcohol dehydrogenase. Niacin is a coenzyme, which means it’s a key part of the enzyme or machine that completes this reaction. This reaction/conversion is partly why booze depletes your B-vitamin stores and thus why energy drinks with caffeine, milk thistle and NIACIN are good HANGOVER REMEDIES! [For more info, see this post I wrote about energy drinks and hangovers on BroBible for more]

To learn more about niacin and the other B-vitamins, stay tuned for next week’s book excerpt as we continue our page-by-page exploration through the Energy Drink Guide.


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GreenEyedGuide Caffeine Challenge Day 3/10 – Alcohol and Caffeine (Friday Night Dilemma)

For Day 3 of the GreenEyedGuide Caffeine Challenge, we discuss the Friday Night Dilemma: what do you do when you get tired at 10 pm but you want to enjoy a night on the town and have an alcoholic beverage?

References in the video - FoodNavigator on the DAWN report and Caffeine Informer on alcohol and energy drinks

March is Caffeine Awareness Month – Join the Caffeine Challenge!

Through this challenge, you’ll learn how to use the 5 Levels of Fatigue to reap the benefits of caffeine while avoiding addiction, dependence, tolerance, and toxicity.

PLAY ALONG – post a picture of your WAKE-UP tool/trick on Instagram and tag @GreenEyedGuide, or add your pictures to the Caffeine Challenge Event page at