Who gets pellagra?

Pellagra is rare in the UK, but might be found in the following groups of people:

  • People whose diet is based around corn or maize – these are low in both vitamin B3 and tryptophan
  • Alcoholics – alcoholics depend upon alcohol for their diet due to damage caused to the digestive system. Alcoholics are usually deficient in many other things too.
  • People with eating disorders or on fad diets
  • People with Hartnup's disease – a genetic disease where people cannot absorb tryptophan in their diet.
  • People which carcinoid syndrome – a syndrome which appears due to many tumours of specific cells in the digestive system. Here, tryptophan is not converted to vitamin B3 correctly.

Photosensitivity Guide Index:

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