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Are NAD Supplements Worth It?

You can age gracefully without dumping your money on expensive NAD supplements

In this article you will learn:

  • What NAD is and why it's important

  • What some theories are about increasing it in the body

  • How to increase your levels with lifestyle and product choices

Lazy Author Alert:

This article summarizes research that is expanded upon in detail in my landmark personal growth book, Dance Your Way Through Life. It is available on my books page. Grab a copy if you want the full and nerdy version.

The Details:

When it comes to NAD, one word you will also hear being thrown around are sirtuins. The sirtuins are a family of genes that have been implicated in the aging process by many researchers, including the famous aging scientist Dr. David Sinclair. They control inflammation, telomere length, DNA repair, energy production and many other important processes in your body. Resveratrol, the common antioxidant supplement that many know about, acts on the sirtuins and facilitates the production of an important molecule called NAD or nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide.

This molecule is found in all cells and is essential to living. It is important for DNA repair, metabolism and energy production, and several other key processes. As we age, NAD levels decline and it is theorized that introducing NAD-supporting supplements into the body can rejuvenate aging tissues, restore youth, energy and our most valuable asset: time.

It’s certainly an exciting development in anti-aging that we can isolate and affect this molecule through supplementation. Companies like LifeVantage have created a special line of “NAD synergizers” called Protandim which supposedly increase NAD levels by 40% in as little as 30 days by acting on your sirtuin genes.

Other companies like TruNiagen sell a patented form of an NAD precursor that claims to raise your levels by 40-50% in 8 weeks. People like Dr. Sinclair take another precursor to NAD called NMN, or nicotinamide mononucleotide, instead of NAD because they argue it has better utilization. This is hotly contested, as NMN’s clinical efficacy has yet to be

documented in trials and its bioavailability is questionable.

Nonetheless, it gives you an appreciation for how new this area of research still is.

As of the time of this writing, there is no commercially available NAD blood test or way to reliably assess its functional status in the body. There was a center in San Diego that was about to offer a commercially available blood test, but they closed in the spring of 2020 when businesses were forced to lock down due to COVID-19. There are also problems with measuring NAD in the serum versus measuring it inside the cells, and just like with your main nutrients this makes a difference in terms of evaluating the performance of both your body and of interventions in this area.

The studies for these various supplements used clinical labs to assess their findings, but until there’s an accessible method to test it yourself, these products have no way of being measured outside of subjective observations of energy, mood or performance. If you’re doing everything I've outlined in the