If you've been hearing more and more about NMN, you're not the only one. Over the past few years, information about NMN and the products that contain it has exploded on the internet. NMN seems to be everywhere, from YouTube videos to TikTok shorts to Podcasts to different blogs and research articles. And now you want to know what NMN is. So keep reading, because this article tells you everything you need to know about it.
What is NMN?
NMN, which stands for "nicotinamide mononucleotide", is a molecule that occurs naturally in the body. NMN is a derivative of vitamin B3 — also known as niacin. As the name suggests, NMN is a nucleotide (a building block of DNA) made from nicotinamide, ribose (simple sugar), and a phosphate group. It is needed to make nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+), an important coenzyme found in all body cells and required for many functions, including slowing down the ageing process (1).
How was discovered?
Even though NMN was first found in the 1960s, most of what we know about it came to light in the middle of the 2010s. And after that, not only did it get a lot of attention from the media. But also the number of scientific studies looking into the different benefits of NMN exploded.
It all started when a group of researchers led by Dr. David Sinclair showed that compounds that activate NAD+ and sirtuins, such as NMN, can make mice live longer (2) (3). Now, a lot of research suggests that nicotinamide mononucleotide may protect against diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer's, and ageing in general (4).
Nicotinamide mononucleotide, which is a precursor of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+), has been gaining interest as a possible way to stop the decline of NAD+ in the body that comes with getting older. The number of annual articles on "nicotinamide mononucleotide" on pubmed shows how quickly interest in the compound is growing.
Where is NMN made from? How is it produced?
NMN is made in the body from B vitamins. The enzyme that makes NMN is known as nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT). NAMPT links nicotinamide, a vitamin B3, to a sugar phosphate named PRPP (5'-phosphoribosyl-1-pyrophosphate).
NAMPT, the key enzyme in NMN biosynthesis, is produced by liver, heart, brain, white blood cells, and, most importantly, fat cells. Like NMN and NAD+, NAMPT levels drop dramatically with age. By your late 40s or early 50s, your body has half the amount it had in your 20s.
It can also be made from nicotinamide ribose (NR), which is also a compound that helps make NAD+. NMN and NR (read the comparison) dance together in the body as both can be converted into each other by different enzymes.
How Does NMN Become NAD+?
When nicotinamide mononucleotide gets into the cells, especially the liver. It is quickly changed into nicotinamide dinucleotide by NMN adenylyltransferases (NMNATs). And after that, it goes through another reaction called "amidation" to make NAD+, which is accelerated by an enzyme called "NAD+ synthetase". NAD+, in turn, plays crucial roles in many functions not only in the liver but throughout the body, including metabolism, DNA repair, cell growth, survival, and, more importantly, aging.
How To Increase your NAD levels?
Many of you may wonder why you can't just take NAD+ instead. Because NAD+ can't get through cell membranes, which is why it can't get into cells. So, to get more NAD+, we need to eat foods or take supplements that are part of this metabolic pathway.
Increasing NMN intake seems to be the most logical step. The problem, however, is that although NMN is found in many dietary sources such as milk, fruits like avocado and tomato, and vegetables like broccoli and cucumber, It's not enough to make a big difference.
For example, 100g of vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, and avocado have only 1mg of NMN, far short of the hundreds of milligrams your body requires daily. As a result, to get NMN benefits, you will have to take supplements such as Purovitalis Liposomal NMN capsules. Compared to other NAD+ boosters, a liposomal form has higher absorption and is not broken down in the gut.
How do I know I get the read deal?
Be careful when buying NMN sold on Amazon
A study was conducted on 22 brands that sell on Amazon. Unfortunately most of these supplements didn't contain much NMN, you can find the study here.
Make sure the brand offers a Certificate of Analysis
The NMNs are likely to be fake if the brand or producer can't provide an up-to-date certifications of analysis. You can find our certificates here.
NMN should be crystal white and light
Simply said, it is incredibly light and airy. Long-term compression has a small clumping effect. Although this may be a little inconvenience, it will not affect the product's quality in any way.
Nicotinamide Mononucleotide made in Europe
Did you know, that almost all brands get their Nicotinamide Mononucleotide from China. Uthever was one of the first companies to offer quality NMN, but not many people know that it is a Chinese company. So, if your local supplement supplier says they sell NMN made in America, it's more likely than not that they sell Uthever. Purovitalis is the first and most popular brand that has NMN made in Europe from Longevir™.
What is the best form of NMN?
The market is longevity supplement market is growing. More companies are popping up, and so are the different forms, from powder to gels and capsules . But what is the best form? The answer this, it's easiest to compare look at the comparison table below. Different forms have different kind of benefits. It's up to you what fits best for your comfort.
|Convenience / Easy to take||◯||⬤||⬤|
|Extended release / Long Lasting Effects||◯||◯||⬤|
|Easy to manage dose||⬤||◯||◯|