Humans have sought the fountain of youth for ages. Though reversing chronological age might not be possible, reducing metabolic age is possible. Two people of the same chronological age have different health statuses. This is due to the difference in metabolic age.1
It is well-known that some people seem to age faster, others more slowly. It simply means that reversing metabolic age through healthy lifestyle choices is possible.
However, every method has its limitations. Exercise or dietary measures are two important ways of increasing lifespan, reversing metabolic age, and risk of diseases. However, intensive nutrition therapy is the third most important way of prolonging life—a kind of therapy that is possible only through the IV route.
Here it is vital to understand that it is never too late to embark on a journey of metabolic age reversal. It is possible to enhance energy levels and significantly improve quality of life with the help of modern medicine through NAD+ therapy.
How does NAD+ work?
Before we look at all the health benefits of NAD+ therapy, let us explore how this unique molecule works. NAD+ is a vitamin-like substance with numerous roles in the body. It is chemically very close to vitamin B3 or niacin. The human body can produce it either by using niacin or the amino acid tryptophan. However, the body’s ability to create this valuable molecule declines with age, thus necessitating its supplementation.2
NAD+ is present in three cellular compartments: cytoplasm, mitochondria, and cellular nucleus. Since it is present inside the cells in these three distinct compartments, it must play some vital role.3
Science has now identified multiple roles of this molecule in human cells. First and foremost, it plays a vital role in energy production. It is needed to produce ATP (adenosine triphosphate), which is the primary energy currency of our cells. NAD+ is converted to NADH (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide + hydrogen). NADH takes the electrons and delivers them to the final stages of cellular respiration, and ATP or cellular energy is generated. Thus, it plays a critical role in cellular energy production.3
However, that is not all. It can also be phosphorylated to form NADP+, which is further converted to NADPH. NADPH protects cells from oxidative stress and plays a vital role in various anabolic pathways.3
Additionally, NAD+ is vital in hundreds of enzyme systems, playing a crucial role in energy production, DNA repair, immune function, and more. The molecule has so many important functions, and science is still discovering its complete role in the body.3
Nevertheless, science has understood that reduced NAD+ production has much to do with aging. Its lower cellular production also leads to many other issues and a decline in health.
Health benefits of NAD+
Since NAD+ is such a critical molecule, it has many functions in the body. Researchers are still discovering how this molecule can help us live longer, be energized, and stay healthy. Science has discovered many of its health benefits.
This is the number one reason for using NAD+ IV therapy. NAD+ can help reverse aging, which is now proven by science. Researchers have developed a better understanding of aging in the last few decades. They have noticed that every 10 years, the human basal metabolic rate (BMR) decreases by 1-2%, causing loss of skeletal muscles, bone mass loss, obesity, greater risk of metabolic disorders, and more.4
Some people seem to age faster than others. Hence there is a big difference in the metabolic age of individuals of the same chronological age. NAD+ therapy primarily aims at reducing metabolic age, boosting BMR, and thus helping prevent age-related decline in health.
One most interesting thing has occurred in the last few years, or more precisely in 2018, when WHO (World Health Organization) classified aging as a disease. These changes appeared in the 11th edition of its International Classification of Diseases. It has numerous consequences since now the age-related decline is regarded as a disease that must be treated. Science no longer thinks that it is just a natural and unpreventable phenomenon. So, there are scientific grounds for anti-aging therapies.5–7
Since anti-aging therapy mainly focuses on boosting BMR, increasing NAD+ levels become critically important. It appears that with aging, intra-cellular levels of NAD+ start declining significantly. It means reduced energy production, slowdown in metabolism, and aging.
Below are some of the ways it may help reverse aging, apart from boosting cellular energy production:
- The sirtuin pathway: Sirtuins are a group of proteins that regulate various cellular processes, including aging. They are often referred to as “longevity proteins” because of their potential involvement in promoting healthy aging and extending lifespan.
One important function of sirtuins is their ability to regulate gene expression. They can modify certain proteins, including histones (proteins that help package DNA), and influence how genes are turned on or off. By doing so, sirtuins can impact various cellular activities, such as DNA repair, metabolism, stress response, and inflammation.
NAD+ works by increasing sirtuin expression or activity level, which prolongs life and reverses aging.8
- The PARPs Pathway: These are also proteins that play vital roles in DNA damage detection and repair. DNA damage is one of the hallmarks of aging. Additionally, these proteins play a vital role in mitochondrial function and energy metabolism. Higher levels of NAD+ can thus help prevent cell death and boost various cellular processes.9
- CD38 and NAD+: CD38 are proteins with many functions. These proteins also play a vital role in immune responses. Both the higher levels of CB38 and lower levels are harmful to health. For example, their higher levels cause greater inflammation. NAD+ plays a vital role in balancing its levels, thus contributing to longevity.9
Above are just some of the mechanisms in which NAD+ may exert anti-aging effects. These are still early days, and much has to be learned about NAD+ and aging processes. Additionally, it is worth understanding that NAD+ would help reverse aging and increase lifespan due to its numerous health benefits for brain health, energy levels, immunity, and much more.
Aging means low energy levels; for some, it means constant fatigue. Studies show that impaired tryptophan metabolism plays a significant role in chronic fatigue. Impaired tryptophan metabolism is difficult to correct through oral nutrition therapy. Thus researchers propose that IV NAD+ therapy could be one of the ways to improve mitochondrial energy production and overcome fatigue.10
But, of course, NAD+ can help in many other ways. For example, those living with Parkinson’s experience significant fatigue. Though Parkinson’s is a brain disorder, it causes significant changes in energy production in skeletal muscles. Studies show that NAD+ levels are significantly low in those living with Parkinson’s.11
Similarly, it is no secret that older adults are at a greater risk of respiratory infections, including Covid-19. Even worse, many adults continue to suffer from poor immunity, fatigue, and other issues, even after recovering from infections. Studies suggest that it has much to do with oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction. NAD+ therapy may have a role in managing such issues.12
So, NAD+ is quite suitable for aging mitochondrial disease, resulting in low energy production. Additionally, it helps boost energy production through its central role in various energy production pathways.13
As already mentioned earlier, DNA damage is one of the leading causes of aging. However, the body slowly starts losing its ability to repair DNA. This also explains why older adults are at a greater risk of cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, and more. NAD+ therapy can be of significant value in boosting DNA repair processes. This is one of the ways in which it prolongs life and slows down aging.14
Of course, these are not mere assumptions, and there is some significant evidence from animal studies that NAD+ works. There have been studies in worms and mice models with rare disorders and with faster aging. Studies found that injecting NAD+ could improve lifespan and health in these living beings.15
NAD+ is a molecule that plays a central role in ATP production or promotes cellular respiration. Its levels are exceptionally high in the mitochondrial compartment and for a reason. Studies show that NAD+ not only enhances cellular respiration, it also prevents oxidative stress. Therefore, a high intake of it is associated with greater survivability of various cells. It means that improving cellular respiration is one more way in which it promotes good health, longevity, and recovery.16
There could be many applications of these findings. For example, heart attack and stroke are the leading causes of death globally. Both these issues cause ischemic injury to the related body cells. Studies suggest boosting NAD+ intake can help prevent ischemic injury to nerve cells.17 Similarly, this incredible molecule can increase the survivability of cardiomyocytes.18
Improves body metabolism
Of course, one of the ways in which NAD+ helps prevent aging is by boosting metabolic rates and increasing energy production. However, it is not just about increased ATP production or mitochondrial function boosting. NAD+ is an important signaling molecule that plays a central role in regulating the metabolism of the whole body.19
It also means that NAD+ can help prevent metabolic disorders. For example, studies suggest that lifestyle interventions like ketogenic diet or ketone bodies work by enhancing NAD+ levels in the body cells. Thus, this wonder molecule is also good for maintaining optimal body weight, enhancing glucose metabolism, and preventing issues like diabetes.20
Neurodegenerative disorders like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s are on the rise. Further, the increased lifespan of humans means that medicine has to find ways to slow down brain aging. The human brain is among the most energy-hungry organs. Animal studies suggest that NAD+ can prevent neurodegeneration. These findings are vital, considering that number of brain neurons does not increase during life. It means that the death of every neuron contributes to brain aging.15
Researchers are now studying NAD+ to manage more severe brain issues. Thus, studies show that NAD+ can exert neuroprotection and prevent the death of brain cells after ischemic stroke. It considerably reduces metabolic stress and increases energy production.21
Similarly, studies confirm that those living with Parkinson’s have lower NAD+ levels in the body. Now, new studies show that boosting its intake may be neuroprotective. At least, studies in animal models confirm these benefits, and now there is a need for clinical studies in humans.22
It is also encouraging that new studies show that it may also have a role in managing Alzheimer’s, the most common neurodegenerative disorder. NAD+ may slow down the disease process, lower neuroinflammation, and help improve memory and learning.23
Enhances memory and concentration
The brain is an energy-hungry organ. It is just 2% of the body weight but utilizes more than 20% of oxygen and energy supply.24 It means that even a slight decline or fluctuations in energy supply may influence memory, mood, and concentration levels.
Hence, one of the ways to boost brain function, memory, and learning is to stimulate its energy supply. Supplementing NAD+ can significantly boost local ATP production and, thus, the brain’s processing power. It means that NAD+ is not just about treating brain disorders. It is also about boosting its power and function. At least, studies in mice confirm that it can help improve impaired memory and learning.25
Immune system support
Proteins like CD38 have numerous roles in the immune system. Both its deficit and excess are bad for immunity. Lower levels of this enzyme mean poor immunity. However, excessive levels mean higher inflammation and immune dysregulation. Studies show that NAD+ is one of the most vital molecules when it comes to regulating CD38. Hence, it is also clear that it plays a crucial role in regulating immunity. Researchers think it is particularly good for preventing diseases caused by chronic inflammation (like heart disease), lowering the risk of cancers, and much more.26,27
Better heart and muscle functions
Heart disease remains the number one cause of death globally. It also means that taking care of heart health is essential for longevity. The human heart has to keep pumping without ever stopping. It also means that it has massive energy requirements. Hence, NAD+ plays a vital role in maintaining this energy supply. Additionally, NADH helps reduce oxidative stress. Thus, NAD+ is good for preventing heart failure.28
However, if something wrong does happen, then NAD+ can still help. It is suitable for preventing the ischemic death of heart muscle cells. It means that it can help counter the consequences of heart attacks.29
But, of course, NAD+ is not about treating some severe heart issues. Instead, it is about preventing them, ensuring that the heart keeps beating normally for longer. Studies suggest that supplementing NAD+ could be one of the strategies to delay heart aging.30
Distinct benefits of IV therapy
There are many ways of boosting NAD+ levels. The three most common methods are using supplements or oral NAD+ precursors, increasing the intake of vitamin B3/niacin, and enhancing the intake of the amino acid tryptophan. These are available as oral supplements.
However, trying to boost NAD+ levels through oral supplements has several limitations. For example, aging is about the declining body’s ability to produce intracellular NAD+. Aging is not essentially about poor intake of nutrients.
It means oral supplements like nicotinamide, niacin, or tryptophan will have limited benefits if the NAD+ production cycle is disrupted in the body cells. This disruption is the main cause of faster metabolic aging.
Hence, IV therapy is the only realistic and more potent way of boosting NAD+. NAD+ is not available as an oral supplement, as it is unstable or fails to reach body cells when taken orally. Hence, IV therapy is the only way.
Therefore, NAD+ IV therapy is not merely about better bioavailability. It is the one effective way of boosting its levels in many individuals—especially those living with fatigue, faster aging, and mitochondrial dysfunction.
The second benefit of NAD+ IV therapy is the possibility of achieving so-called supra-physiological levels of the nutrient. It means that one can have high NAD+ levels in the body for a short time. It is something that cannot be achieved through any oral supplement. Such a short-term boost in NAD+ can have some distinct benefits and may help provide quick relief from specific issues.
Thus, NAD+ IV therapy can be used as a salvage therapy. It can save brain, muscle, and heart cells from death and destruction, boosting their activity levels and survivability. This may be especially vital for adults experiencing falling health due to aging and chronic ailments.
NAD+ IV therapy offers numerous health benefits, including anti-aging effects, increased energy production, DNA repair, improved metabolism, neuroprotection, enhanced memory and concentration, immune system support, and better heart and muscle function. It works by increasing the levels of NAD+ in the body, a vital molecule involved in various cellular processes. While there are other ways to boost NAD+ levels, such as oral supplements, IV therapy is more effective and potent. It allows for better bioavailability and the possibility of achieving higher, short-term NAD+ levels, which can have distinct benefits and provide quick relief from specific health issues. NAD+ IV therapy particularly benefits individuals experiencing fatigue, faster aging, and mitochondrial dysfunction.
- Hertel J, Friedrich N, Wittfeld K, et al. Measuring Biological Age via Metabonomics: The Metabolic Age Score. J Proteome Res. 2016;15(2):400-410. doi:10.1021/acs.jproteome.5b00561
- Bogan KL, Brenner C. Nicotinic acid, nicotinamide, and nicotinamide riboside: a molecular evaluation of NAD+ precursor vitamins in human nutrition. Annu Rev Nutr. 2008;28:115-130. doi:10.1146/annurev.nutr.28.061807.155443
- Covarrubias AJ, Perrone R, Grozio A, Verdin E. NAD+ metabolism and its roles in cellular processes during ageing. Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2021;22(2):119-141. doi:10.1038/s41580-020-00313-x
- Vásquez-Alvarez S, Bustamante-Villagomez SK, Vazquez-Marroquin G, et al. Metabolic Age, an Index Based on Basal Metabolic Rate, Can Predict Individuals That are High Risk of Developing Metabolic Syndrome. High Blood Press Cardiovasc Prev. 2021;28(3):263-270. doi:10.1007/s40292-021-00441-1
- Shade C. The Science Behind NMN–A Stable, Reliable NAD+Activator and Anti-Aging Molecule. Integr Med (Encinitas). 2020;19(1):12-14.
- Zhavoronkov A, Bhullar B. Classifying aging as a disease in the context of ICD-11. Frontiers in Genetics. 2015;6. Accessed June 23, 2023. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fgene.2015.00326
- Longevity TLH. Is ageing a disease? The Lancet Healthy Longevity. 2022;3(7):e448. doi:10.1016/S2666-7568(22)00154-4
- Huang T. The Role of NAD+ in Anti-Aging Therapies. Am J Biomed Sci & Res 2019–6 (5) AJBSR MS ID 001080 DOI: 1034297/AJBSR. 2019;1080.
- Aman Y, Qiu Y, Tao J, Fang EF. Therapeutic potential of boosting NAD+ in aging and age-related diseases. Translational Medicine of Aging. 2018;2:30-37. doi:10.1016/j.tma.2018.08.003
- Dehhaghi M, Panahi HKS, Kavyani B, et al. The Role of Kynurenine Pathway and NAD + Metabolism in Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Aging and disease. 2022;13(3):698. doi:10.14336/AD.2021.0824
- Mischley LK, Shankland E, Liu SZ, Bhayana S, Fox DJ, Marcinek DJ. ATP and NAD+ Deficiency in Parkinson’s Disease. Nutrients. 2023;15(4):943. doi:10.3390/nu15040943
- Block T, Kuo J. Rationale for Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD+) Metabolome Disruption as a Pathogenic Mechanism of Post-Acute COVID-19 Syndrome. Clin Med�Insights�Pathol. 2022;15:2632010X221106986. doi:10.1177/2632010X221106986
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- Croteau DL, Fang EF, Nilsen H, Bohr VA. NAD+ in DNA repair and mitochondrial maintenance. Cell Cycle. 2017;16(6):491-492. doi:10.1080/15384101.2017.1285631
- Fang EF, Kassahun H, Croteau DL, et al. NAD+ Replenishment Improves Lifespan and Healthspan in Ataxia Telangiectasia Models via Mitophagy and DNA Repair. Cell Metabolism. 2016;24(4):566-581. doi:10.1016/j.cmet.2016.09.004
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- Hou Y, Lautrup S, Cordonnier S, et al. NAD+ supplementation normalizes key Alzheimer’s features and DNA damage responses in a new AD mouse model with introduced DNA repair deficiency. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2018;115(8):E1876-E1885. doi:10.1073/pnas.1718819115
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