The first true potential of Niagen was discovered by Harvard geneticist Dr. David Sinclair, who first discovered a little something called NAD+ and how it can help the body. NAD+, also known as nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, helps parts of our cells communicate and function, transferring energy from food to cells. We produce less and less of it as we age, leading to consequences like:
- Increased sunburn
- Increased visceral fat storage (increased belly fat)
- Increased blood sugar levels and metabolic syndrome
- Worsening cardiovascular diseases
- Increased fat storage in the liver
- Other effects of aging and health conditions
So, decreasing amounts of NAD+ lead to aging-related issues. Could adding more of it stem the tide? This is where Niagen comes into play.
What Does Niagen Do?
Niagen also known as nicotinamide riboside, is a natural version of vitamin B3 found in milk as a trace element. Up until now, it was considered too difficult or expensive to mass produce. Now, with Chromadex and Live Cell Research creating Niagen and adding it to their lineup of products, everyone can take advantage of its benefits. We know that vitamin B3 supports many different health functions, but Niagen is special, especially when it comes to aging.1
While Sinclair found how important NAD+ could be, it would fall to other scientists to make this important link between Niagen and this very important coenzyme.
The Proof Behind Niagen
Charles Brenner, Ph.D., professor and Roy J. Carver Chair of Biochemistry at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine partnered with colleagues at Queens University Belfast and ChromaDex Corp. which supplied Niagen for one key clinical trial.
Six men and six women, all healthy, took part in the trial. Each participant received single oral doses of 100 mg, 300 mg, or 1,000 mg of NR. This took place in different sequences with a seven-day gap between doses. Following each dose, blood and urine samples were collected and analyzed to show measured levels of NAD+.
The end results showed that using nicotinamide riboside increased NAD+ metabolism by amounts directly related to the dose. In addition, there were no major side effects.
“This trial shows that oral NR safely boosts human NAD+ metabolism,” Brenner says. “We are excited because everything we are learning from animal systems indicates that the effectiveness of NR depends on preserving and/or boosting NAD+ and related compounds in the face of metabolic stresses. Because the levels of supplementation in mice that produce beneficial effects are achievable in people, it appears that health benefits of NR will be translatable to humans safely.” Brenner also ran a smaller trial on himself before this, and the results correlated with what he would later discover.2
Other studies on Niagen in other products have shown positive effects on NAD+ levels. One larger study in elderly people showed that a single 250 mg dose of Niagen increased blood NAD+ levels by 40%. The most important tests on Niagen may still be yet to come. A collaboration between Keio University School of Medicine in Tokyo and Washington University School of Medicine is going to be the first long-term clinical trial for Niagen in humans. This is key because we are finally going to see how Niagen actually works on targeting some of those markers of aging first hand.
Adding Niagen To Your Own Life
If you are ready to try Niagen yourself, a good starting point is either Chromadex’s Barology bars or the Tru Niagen supplement. Other products from other companies do use Niagen as well, such as Elysium’s Basis product. Dosage will vary based on weight and age. In general, the older and heavier you are, the more Niagen you will need to see results.
Live Cell Research offers three different purchasing options.
- 1 Bottle (30-day supply): $46.99
- 3 Bottles: $117
- 6 bottles: $214.27
If you have a bit of uncertainty, note that the company does offer a 90-day money-back guarantee on any purchase. Because of the wide and varied effects of aging, you may have a bit of a question of whether or not you are a good candidate for Niagen. In general, if you find yourself getting cases of “brain fog” or general sluggishness as you age, you can make use of Niagen. As with any supplement, be sure to consult with your doctor first.