Thanks to the works of modern medicine, people all over the world are living longer and longer. According to the World Health Organization, the population of older individuals in the world is expected to reach over 2 billion by 2050 which is doubled by the age population. Even though this is the case, it’s still important that we do what we can to protect our health as we get older. Just because some of us may live longer, does not mean we are living healthy. We become a lot more susceptible to diseases as we age due to our organs accumulating damage and declining overall. This is why anti-aging remedies have become so important, to reduce the risk of some of these age-related diseases and allow us to live longer AND remain healthy at the same time.
One of the most effective anti-aging targets out there is NAD+, or nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide. NAD+ works to mediate the production of the energy our cells need to survive, while fueling the enzymes that will work to repair the DNA damage. NAD+ declines rapidly as we get older. To help restore our NAD+ levels, we can take supplements of the biochemical precursor referred to as NMN or nicotinamide mononucleotide. NMN can be taken orally or in supplement form to raise those NAD+ levels.
I will be going over some more benefits on NMN in depth, as well as other important information such as:
- Recommended dosage amounts
- NMN side effects that can arise
Top 5 Benefits of Using NMN
NMN is how NAD+ is produced, which works mainly to provide our cells with a little bit more energy to function. A lack of cellular energy is a main factor that can speed up the aging process, so this is why NMN is referred to as anti-aging. Along with increasing cellular energy in general, check out of the other benefits NMN has to offer.
Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death all over the world, which is why our heart health is so important to protect. As we age, our hearts are more prone to irregular beats. Irregular heartbeats can lead to some pretty serious consequences, including heart failure and even death. Once our heart tissue becomes damaged, it’s very hard for it to recover because it is so sensitive and precious. Heart tissue that’s damaged will result in scarring, which can lead to heart dysfunction in many cases. NMN can work to recover heart function by reducing scarring, as well as rejuvenating the mitochondria by improving heart metabolism and protecting against heart failure.
Fight Obesity and Diabetes
Insulin resistance is one of the metabolic deficiencies that is linked back to obesity. According to a study, NMN can double the amount of mitochondria of livers in mice, which works to protect against obesity. NMN can also stimulate fat breakdown which will help those who are obese to lose weight. Eating too much and becoming obese can have a devastating effect on our metabolism, as well as lead to diabetes. NMN can also prevent the kidney disease and neuron degeneration that’s associated with diabetes. It’s important to note that while NMN can work to prevent obesity and diabetes, it’s imperative that you still maintain exercise on your own to further prevent these kinds of risks.
Improve Brain Function
In another study done with mice, research has provided evidence that shows NMN was able to enhance brain function by increasing brain blood vessel dilatation and blood flow to the brain. The human brain needs at least 20 percent of total resting body oxygen, even if it only takes up 2 percent of our body mass overall. When there is enough blood flow to the brain, this will ensure that it gets enough oxygen and nutrients to carry out all of the functions needed.
Enhances DNA Repair
As we age, our DNA or the code for the building blocks of our cells will most likely accumulate some damage. NAD+, which is what NMN leads to, fuels an enzyme referred to as sirtuins. Sirtuins play a very critical role in working to repair our DNA. The DNA at the end of our chromosomes, or telomeres, grow shorter each time our cells are dividing. This telomere shortening can begin to damage our cells and genes at a certain point, but sirtuins will work to stabilize the telomere length and slow down the process. These sirtuins also rely on NAD+ in order to function, so an increase in NMN can work to enhance the process overall.
The immature egg cell that develops into a maternal egg is referred to as an oocyte. The quality of these oocytes are expected to decrease as the female body ages, but according to another mice study NMN can actually benefit fertility. This is done by enhancing the number and quality of maternal eggs. This might mean that women’s reproductivity could be improved in their later years.
There have only been a few clinical investigations on the benefits NMN can offer, with clinical trials that involve humans still remaining in process to determine other safety measures. More research of the effects NMN can have on people is still much needed.
Currently, there is no right or wrong consensus on the amount of NMN we should be taking. According to the 2022 clinical study assessing results of placebo, 300, 600, and 900 mg doses all found the greatest efficacy. An average of 900 mg is recommended as the daily dose for those wanting to get the most out of their NMN usage, without consuming an unsafe amount. Regardless, you should always look at the manufacturer’s label to see the amount they have recommended. It’s best just to stick to this number, with doses of between one and six tablets recommended in sizes between 100 and 500 mg. One of the most popular NMN supplements out there, Youngr by Wonderfeel, recommends two capsules that will bring your daily amount to 900 mg.
Keio University School of Medicine Study
In recent years, the Keio University School of Medicine ran the first human clinical study for NMN. NMN was orally given to 10 healthy men, through 100, 200, and 500 mg NMN capsules. Prior to completing the study, participants had to fast for one night prior. Those among the study were only allowed to consume water for the 5 hours after the NMN administration, until they had received physiological examinations. When the results eventually came through, it was determined that the participants had been able to tolerate the NMN very well at each dosage. There were no gastrointestinal issues or changes to heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen saturation, or body temperature.
The evidence from this study has proven that oral administrations up to 500 mg are safe. You can start taking more NMN once you start feeling comfortable and noticing the results, but it’s never advised to take anymore than 900 mg each day. It’s important to note that this study was done in healthy individuals, but the need remains for research for those already struggling with age-related disorders.
Potential NMN Side Effects + Other Safety Concerns
Overall, there have been no serious side effects in humans that have been due to the use of NMN. When taken at higher doses than intended, you could be facing side effects such as nausea, diarrhea, indigestion, and stomach discomfort. However, these are common side effects of supplements when taken in amounts that are too high.
The biggest concern that faces NMN today is safety. There are a number of cheap and fake imitations out there that make the standard claims of NMN, with prices that may seem too good to be true. Many of these options are not actually pure NMN, and are combined with other compounds that raise the risk of several safety issues. If a manufacturer is not clear with the ingredients used in a NMN supplement, the best thing you can do is stay away!
There is more of a potential for impurities when a company manufactures NMN in non cGMP-certified facilities where there is much higher risk for impurities to be found. In the U.S., NMN is still considered a dietary supplement which means that there are no requirements to prove that it is safe and truly effective. Before you go out and buy some NMN, it may be beneficial to look for brands that are clear about their manufacturing methods. The three common methods of manufacturing NMN include:
- Chemical synthesis: This method creates a high yield and allows for careful control of starting materials, even though they are not sourced from biological systems. It uses environmentally-damaging solvents and impurities, with byproducts in the finished product being very difficult to remove.
- Enzymatic synthesis: This option produces a higher yield and very high purity. It’s considered a green preparation method for the production of NMN, even though it is typically more on the expensive side
- Fermented biosynthesis: This method has a low yield with a high quality, although not being suited well to commercial production.
As mentioned previously, Youngr by Wonderfeel is one of the best options for a NMN supplement you can find out there. The starting material for the process is derived from a food-grade yeast called Kluyveromyces marxianus, which is “generally considered as safe” by the FDA and has “qualified presumption of safety” from the European Food Safety Authority. You will find that many options for NMN are more on the expensive side, which is just what will come along with the manufacturing and processing aspects. While it may be a habit for many of us to try and find the best deals on things, there are certain things that are just worth the price. NMN as a perfect example!
What to Takeaway
Even though clinical understanding of NMN and its supplements are evolving and not fully understood, every trial and piece of research will continue to educate us about NMN and potential benefits and side effects. Through the few studies that have been conducted so far however, there seem to be legitimate health and life span benefits. While there may be some side effects for some, this is usually due to over usage with no serious side effects having been reported due directly from the NMN. Set yourself up for success and make sure to do some research into a couple brands before you decide to buy!