More at link:The concern for our modern society revolves around more of a “subclinical” deficiency issue, meaning that niacin levels are not necessarily at pellagra levels, but they are low enough to cause subtle functional issues for the individual. Things like anxiety, ADHD, depression, even hallucinations can be caused by a simple niacin deficiency. Dementia, Alzheimer’s Disease and schizophrenia have been successfully treated with niacin therapy in some cases. In fact, there are physicians out there who believe that schizophrenia is pellagra! Despite that, the practice of correcting nutritional deficiencies to improve neurologic symptoms, which was very common up until the 1940s, has been pushed out of most psychiatry in favor of antipsychotic drugs at this point in time. Thankfully, the benefits of nutrient supplementation in modern medicine (termed “Orthomolecular Medicine”) is is being revisited as of late due to the positive results of many current scientific studies.
Check out the following excerpt from Dr. Joseph Mercola’s 2012 interview with Dr. Andrew Saul on the subject of niacin and schizophrenia on Mercola.com:
When vitamin B3 or niacin was first added as an enrichment or as a fortification to flour, about half of the people in mental institutions went home. This is not a well-known fact. They were there not because they were mentally ill – because of genetic, environment, or social reasons – but because they were malnourished… He wondered about the half that didn’t go home.
What about the people that had a little bit of niacin, but didn’t get better? … [H]e started giving what at the time were preposterously high doses of niacin: 3,000 milligrams a day. And he was curing schizophrenia in 80 percent of the cases.
This is astonishing. The cure rate for schizophrenia with drug therapy is not particularly good. Dr. Hoffer saw again and again that niacin worked. Then he studied it, did the placebo-controlled, double-blind test, and started writing paper after paper on this. At that point, the American Psychiatric Association literally blacklisted him.
Dementia or Niacin Deficiency?