NMN is a substance that occurs naturally and that can be found in fruits, milk and vegetables.
In our body, NMN provides the “fuel” that important enzymes need to maintain the epigenome, repair DNA and carry out many other important functions in our cells.
More specifically, NMN is needed to make NAD+, the fuel.
NAD+ is a very important small molecule that helps many proteins and enzymes to carry out their functions.
For example, NAD+ is needed for sirtuins to work properly. Sirtuins are molecules that maintain the epigenome.
The epigenome is the intricate molecular machinery that surrounds the DNA. The epigenome regulates which genes are switched on or off. It’s a very complex system, making sure that only gut genes are active in gut cells, and not in skin or brain cells for example (all our cells have the same DNA).
When we get older, the epigenome becomes more dysregulated. Genes that should be switched on are switched off, like housekeeping genes, while some genes are switched on that should be switched off, like cancer-promoting genes or pro-inflammatory genes.
Other functions of NMN
Besides helping out in the proper functioning of the epigenome, NAD+ is also needed for PARPs to work. PARPs are important enzymes that repair damaged DNA. When there is not enough NAD+ around, our DNA will be less well repaired, which can accelerate aging and lead to many other problems.
NMN also improves the functioning of our mitochondria. Mitochondria are the power plants of our cells, providing almost all energy that our cells need to work and survive. During aging, our mitochondria become more damaged, leading to all kinds of problems.
NMN can lower the levels of inflammation that start to rise during aging (called “inflammaging”).
NMN may also improve stem cell health, helping stem cells to live longer and replicate more. During aging, stem cell levels decline.
In scientific studies, NMN has been shown to mitigate various aspects of aging in old animals. NMN improved their aged metabolism, increase blood flow to the brain, increase stamina, and even fertility, among other things.
NMN can be taken orally, it’s well-absorbed. It’s also much more stable in the gut lumen and bloodstream than other NAD+ boosters. In fact, recent studies show that NMN is likely the best NAD+ booster to impact aging. That’s why acclaimed aging specialists, like Harvard Professor David Sinclair, take NMN.