Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD+)

Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD+)

Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD+) is a coenzyme that is present in each living cell in the body. It is produced from the breakdown of nicotinamide riboside (niagen), an alternative form of vitamin B3 (niacin). NAD+ plays an integral role in energy production and regulation of vital cellular processes such as DNA repair, strengthening cells’ defense systems, conversion of food into useable form of energy, and regulation of circadian rhythm.

How NAD+ Works

NAD+ converts nutrients into adenosine triphosphate, a compound that provides energy to living cells. Aside from this important function, it works together with various forms of proteins to carry out a wide array of biological processes such as DNA repair, calcium signaling, maintenance of cell energy and chromosomal integrity, and gene expression.

Overall Health Benefits of NAD+

  • Improves cognitive function [1-38]
  • Improves cardiovascular health [5] [39-53]
  • Promotes weight loss [54-67]
  • Lowers blood pressure [68-71]
  • Fights cancer [72-76]
  • Increases muscle mass [77-82]
  • Improves liver health [83-88]
  • Improves kidney health [89-91]

Proven Health Benefits of NAD+

Improves Cognitive Function

A number of strong scientific evidence suggests that NAD+ can help improve cognitive health:

  1. In a cell study, researchers found that cells treated with NAD+ were more resistant to stress. [1]
  2. According to a rat study, NAD+ helps protect the brain against oxidative stress. [2]
  3. A rat study found that NAD+ can significantly decrease brain injury. [3]
  4. In a rat study, researchers found that NAD+ is also essential for altering genes that accelerate aging. [4]
  5. According to a rat study, NAD+ can slow or even reverse the progression of age related-brain diseases. [5]
  6. In a rat study, researchers found that NAD+ improved sleep-wake and hunger cycles. [6]
  7. Studies found that decreased amounts of NAD+ in the cells accelerate the aging process. [7-9]
  8. According to a rat study, NAD+ is an integral part of cell metabolism. [10]
  9. In a rat study, researchers found that NAD+ has the ability to protect cells, promote DNA repair, and increase lifespan. [9]
  10. A rat study found that NAD+ helps the brain function at optimal levels. [10-14]
  11. Numerous studies suggest that insufficient amounts of NAD+ result in cell breakdown, which in turn accelerates the aging process and causes mitochondrial dysfunction. [15-19]
  12. Several studies found that NAD+ is important for continued production of energy (ATP) by the mitochondria in the brain. [20-23]
  13. Studies found that NAD+ helps maintain a healthy neurological system and protect against various neurological diseases. [24-27]
  14. A study found that NAD+ is an essential coenzyme needed for brain function. [28]
  15. Cell studies found that NAD+ can help improve the functions of the neurons in the brain. [29-31]
  16. In a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease, NAD+ supplementation significantly normalized nerve cell inflammation, synaptic transmission, and DNA damage as well as improved learning, memory and motor function. [32-38]

Improves Cardiovascular Health

There’s increasing evidence supporting the cardiovascular benefits of NAD+:

  1. In animal models of heart failure, NAD+ improved a multitude of processes needed for cardiovascular function such as production of energy for cardiomyocytes (heart muscle cells) and reversing vascular dysfunction and oxidative stress. [39-42]
  2. A cell study reported that NAD+ protected rat heart tissues against apoptosis (programmed cell death). [43]
  3. In rats with impaired heart function, NAD+ supplementation improved markers of cardiovascular health. [44-47]
  4. Studies in mice found that NAD+ can stimulate regeneration of heart muscle cells, reduce left ventricular contractile dysfunction, and prevent heart enlargement. [39, 48-49]
  5. Rat studies found that higher levels of NAD+ were associated with improved cardiac function. [5, 50]
  6. Animal studies also found that lower NAD+ levels were associated with mitochondrial dysfunction in heart muscle cells. [51-52]
  7. A 2015 study published in Nature Reviews found that NAD+ can prevent the progression of obesity through its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. [53]

Promotes Weight Loss

There’s also a great deal of evidence supporting the fat-burning effects of NAD+:

  1. In obese female mice, NAD+ injections reversed glucose intolerance induced by obesity and improved exercise capacity. [54]
  2. In healthy obese participants, NAD+ supplementation reduced weight by 17.1%. [55]
  3. In mammalian cells and mouse tissues, NAD+ protected against oxidative stress and high fat diet-induced metabolic abnormalities. [56]
  4. In mice, supplementation with NAD+ at 400 mg/kg/day reduced abdominal visceral fat deposition. [57]
  5. In a study of twins, lower NAD+ levels were associated with acquired obesity. [58]
  6. A cell study found that NAD+ can promote weight loss by reducing the number of adipocytes (fat cells). [59]
  7. Several studies have revealed that decreased NAD+ levels in cells were associated with higher fat mass tissues in the skeletal muscles, liver, and brain. [60­-63]
  8. In mice, NAD+ protected against obesity by promoting whole-body energy homeostasis. [64]
  9. In mice, long-term administration of NAD+ reduced age-associated body weight gain. [65]
  10. NAD+ supplementation in mice ameliorated maternal obesity. [66]
  11. A cell study found that NAD+ normalized mitochondrial function and whole body metabolism. [67]

Lowers Blood Pressure

A number of studies found that NAD+ has antihypertensive effects:

  1. In healthy middle-aged and older adults, NAD+ supplementation for 6 weeks reduced blood pressure and arterial stiffness. [68]
  2. A study found that administration of NAD+ boosting molecules decreased blood pressure in Korean subjects. [69]
  3. In obese men and women, administration of NAD+ at 1-2 g per day for 6-12 weeks significantly reduced blood pressure. [70-71]

Fights Cancer

Studies suggest that NAD+ exerts its anti-cancer effects through several mechanisms:

  1. A study found that NAD+ regulates cell cycle arrest and programmed cell death of malignant cells. [72]
  2. In human ovarian tumor tissues, NAD+ enhanced the anti-tumor activities of chemotherapeutic drugs. [73]
  3. A 2018 study published in Frontiers in Oncology found that NAD+ prevented the progression of cancer by stimulating DNA repair. [74]
  4. A 2019 study reported that targeting NAD+ metabolism can enhance radiation therapy responses of cancer patients. [75]
  5. A 2015 study published in the Journal of Molecular & Cellular Oncology found that boosting NAD+ can prevent and treat liver cancer. [76]

Increases Muscle Mass

Studies show that NAD+ can help combat loss of muscle mass and strength associated with aging and musculoskeletal disease:

  1. In older men, NAD+ supplementation increased muscle mass and reduced circulating inflammatory cytokines. [77]
  2. In old mice, restoration of NAD+ levels to normal reversed skeletal muscle aging. [78]
  3. A 2018 study reported that NAD+ is essential in n skeletal muscle development and regeneration. [79]
  4. In healthy obese men and women, administration of NAD+ at 1g per day for 6 weeks improved skeletal muscle composition. [80]
  5. A study found that aerobic and resistance exercise training can reverse age-related muscle loss by increasing NAD+ levels. [81]
  6. In a mouse model of Duchene’s muscular dystrophy (DMD), NAD+ supplementation improved muscle function. [82]

Improves Liver Health

Several lines of evidence suggest that NAD+ can help prevent the development of liver diseases:

  1. A 2016 study found NAD+ deficiency in the liver increases the risk of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. [83-84]
  2. In mice, NAD+ attenuated alcohol-induced liver injury. [85]
  3. In a mouse model of liver fibrosis, NAD+ prevented liver scarring. [86]
  4. A 2019 study found that NAD+ protected against aging-induced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease-like liver dysfunction in mice. [87]
  5. A 2015 study published in Nature Reviews found that NAD+ can prevent the progression of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease by influencing the oxidative stress response, programmed cell death, and inflammatory response. [88]

Improves Kidney Health

Latest studies indicate that NAD+ is beneficial for kidney health:

  1. A 2019 study published in National Reviews in Nephrology found that NAD+ deficiency could lead to chronic kidney disease. [89]
  2. A 2017 study also found that NAD+ supplementation can help improve kidney function. [90]
  3. A 2017 study also found that lower NAD+ levels were associated with higher incidence of acute kidney injury. [91]


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