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Niacin, Fish Oil & Ibuprofen

By Elizabeth Wolfenden

Before taking multiple supplements or medications at the same time, do your research. Find out the purpose, dosage and potential side effects of each supplement or medication on its own. See if there are any known drug interactions for each supplement or medication, then check if there are any known interactions between the supplements and medications you are taking. If you are not sure if you should take a certain medication or supplement, check with your doctor.


People may use niacin supplements for a variety of reasons. The vitamin may reduce the amount of cholesterol and other fatty substances in your blood. People who are at risk of a niacin deficiency may also take niacin supplements. Although the specific dose varies depending on individual circumstances, the recommended dietary allowance for healthy adults ranges from 14 mg to 16 mg a day. You should not exceed 35 mg of niacin a day unless you have specific instructions from a doctor. Potential side effects of niacin includes itching or tingling of the skin, redness of the skin, headaches, nausea, vomiting, bloating, heartburn, diarrhea or blurred vision. Serious side effects include a fast heartbeat, yellowing of the skin or eyes, feeling faint or dizziness. If you experience any of these serious side effects while taking niacin supplements, contact a doctor immediately.

Fish Oil

Fish oil may reduce triglyceride levels and prevent heart disease. Although more research needs to be done to prove effectiveness, it also may also have other benefits, including the ability to lower blood pressure, improve period pain and lowering the risk of stroke. It also may be useful in the treatment of a number of medical conditions, including attention deficit disorder, bipolar disorder, IgA nephropathy, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, asthma, Raynaud’s syndrome, dyspraxia and developmental coordination disorders. The proper dosage of fish oil varies, but people should generally avoid taking more than 3 grams a day, according to Medline Plus. Taking more than this amount might interfere with blood clotting, reduce the immune system’s activity and increase the levels of the “bad” LDL cholesterol.


Ibuprofen is a common, over-the-counter pain reliever. It is also available as a prescription. Ibuprofen is in a class of medications called NSAIDs that work by stopping the body’s production of a substance that causes fever, inflammation and pain. Most adults can take 200 to 400 mg of ibuprofen every 4 to 6 hours, but always check the instructions on the label or ask your doctor for proper dosing for your specific situation. Potential side effects of ibuprofen include bloating, gas, upset stomach, skin rash or itching, ringing in the ears, mild heartburn, constipation, diarrhea or blurred vision.


Taking ibuprofen before taking a niacin supplement may prove beneficial. Large doses of niacin, generally over 50 mg, may cause flushing. Flushing is a sudden burning and tingling sensation of the skin, typically accompanied by redness. Taking ibuprofen approximately 30 minutes before taking niacin may reduce this flushing. Other than this, no other known interactions exist between niacin, fish oil and ibuprofen, according to However, this does not necessarily mean that no interactions exist. In addition, although niacin, fish oil and ibuprofen should not negatively interact with each other, they may interact negatively with other supplements or medications. Because of this, it is crucial that you report your current supplements and medications to a doctor or pharmacist before taking anything new.

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