Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) is becoming a leader in the battle against aging. The supplement has gained popularity in anti-aging circles, but does not have to be reserved for those simply stepping over the hill.
Studies have shown that NMN supplementation can help improve cardiovascular fitness which is beneficial for both young and elderly people; however, the required dosage is still undetermined.
While brands recommend taking 250–500 mg/day of NMN for people under 35 and up to 1g/day for people over 35, multiple studies reveal that 250 mg/day of NMN is a sufficient dosage even for elderly to see the positive effects.
Evidence also suggests that age can play a role in deciding when to take NMN supplements; according to the reports, young adults should take NMN 6 hours after they wake up and elderly should take the supplements in the evening.
A clinical trial from 2020 examined 10 healthy men and concluded dosages ranging from 100 mg/day to 500 mg/day were safe for consumption with no adverse side effects. Previous studies prove NMN to be a precursor to nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+), a compound that decreases as we age — leading to associations of cognitive decline, cancer, metabolic disease, sarcopenia, and frailty.
One Chinese-based study showcased young to middle-aged runners probing the effects of NMN and exercise study on cardiovascular fitness in six weeks. The study contained a low dosage group (300 mg/day NMN), a medium dosage group (600 mg/day NMN), a high dosage group (1200 mg/day NMN), and a control group (0 mg/day NMN). Each of the four groups contained 10 males and 2 females.
The study’s conclusion found NMN to increase the performance of humans during exercise training, with the improvement resulting from enhanced O2 utilization of the skeletal muscle. Interestingly enough, the results found both the medium and high dosage to be equally effective, with little mention of the low dosage.
The study’s results:
Analysis of covariance of the change from baseline over the 6-week treatment showed that the oxygen uptake (VO2), percentages of maximum oxygen uptake (VO2max), power at the first ventilatory threshold, and power at the second ventilatory threshold increased to a higher degree in the medium and high dosage groups compared with the control group.
Improved cardiovascular fitness via NMN is a plus for younger adults seeking to better their health and fight aging early. However, the desired mg/day amount is still undetermined.
Should the elderly take higher NMN dosages?
Brands suggest different dosages based on age. For example, NMN Bio, suggests individuals under the age of 35 to start with 250 mg/day and increase to 500 mg/day compared to those above the age of 35. The site recommends 500 mg/day to 1 g/day for ages 35-and-up.
Although brands, like NMN Bio, raise dosages based on the age group, multiple studies show 250 mg/day to be an effective dosage for those in elderly age groups as well.
Research from the University of Tokyo found that during 12 weeks, older men consuming 250 mg/day NMN experienced improvements in muscle strength and performance. Also, a study by the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis reports that 250 mg/day NMN increases muscle insulin sensitivity, insulin signaling, and remodeling in postmenopausal women with prediabetes, and who are overweight or obese.
Furthermore, a mice study from 2016 tested two different groups of mice consuming 100 mg/kg/day NMN and 300 mg/kg/day NMN along with a control group. The study concluded the 100 mg/kg/day NMN dosage to be as if not more effective than the larger dosage.
Here are the findings:
An optimal dose of NMN to maximize its efficacy appears to differ depending on physiological functions. For example, whereas the effects of NMN on body weight gain, insulin sensitivity, tear production, and bone mineral density were dose-dependent, 100 mg/kg/day of NMN improved oxygen consumption, energy expenditure, and physical activity better than 300 mg/kg/day. For rod and cone photoreceptor function, both doses had similar effects.
According to Nnm.com, the appropriate NMN dosage per day for humans would be 500 mg/day based on the information from the mice study with volume of distribution being taken into account.
When to take NMN?
Just like finding the correct dosage of NMN for the most efficiency, there is conflicting evidence surrounding the time of day to consume the supplement. It seems age may also play a part in deciding when to take NMN.
Research completed from the University of Waterloo in Canada involving a model that simulates the circadian clock and metabolism in the mouse liver, found that for the highest efficiencies, younger adults should consume NMN six hours after they wake up.
This differs from a study completed by the University of Tsukuba in Japan involving healthy individuals over the age of 65 that were split into four random groups. One group received 250 mg NMN in the morning before noon, the second group 250 mg NMN in the evening following 6 p.m., plus two correlating placebo groups.
The study identified four areas including characteristics of participants, sleep quality, fatigue, and physical performance throughout a 12-week period. Significant discoveries were found only in the fatigue and physical performance results, with a group taking NMN in the evening, which showcased superior results over tested groups.
The physical performance test required a 5-STS (5-times sit to stand) component, where the group taking NMN in the evening improved its time over the 12 weeks from 6.3 seconds to 5.3 seconds. By far, this was the most notable result in the study.
What professionals suggest?
NMN supporters, such as the Harvard Professor David Sinclair, have their own opinions. Sinclair personally highlights his 1,000 mg/day MNN usage as one of his morning priorities. Still, not enough research exists to substantiate his claim.
Sinclair is also a co-founder of Metro International Biotech, an privately-held pharmaceutical company that is seeking FDA approval in its quest as an investigational new drug (IND) that has proceeded with trials.
Recently, the FDA rescinded NMN as a New Dietary Ingredient (NDI), leaving the status of NMN on the marketplace in question. Nevertheless, NMN products are still for sale at the moment.