What the HELL is NMN? Really anti-aging?

Have you heard of NMN?

It is Nicotinamide Mononucleotide, called Human clinical trial of anti-aging “Magic drug”.

When you search NMN benefits on google, it shows:

Potential Benefits of NMN

  • Promotes Vascular Health and Blood Flow. …
  • Improves Muscle Endurance and Strength. …
  • Protects Against Heart Disease. …
  • Lowers Risk of Obesity. …
  • Enhances Maintenance of DNA Repair. …
  • Increases Mitochondrial Function. …
  • Clinical Trials on Safety of NMN. …
  • Do Scientists Use NMN?

From Nicotinamide Mononucleotide (NMN): Benefits, Side Effects & Dosage

Magic drug for anti-aging?

Today we dig it deeper.

Human clinical trial of anti-aging “magic drug” NMN

Recently, people have always asked about a miraculous anti-aging medicine called NMN (niacinamide mononucleotide), whether it should be eaten and if it is useful, I usually answer directly “Don’t take it now”. But after Harvard professor David Sinclair and some Hong Kong tycoons promoted it through various channels, it is estimated that many friends will still buy it after asking.

To be honest, the effect of NMN cannot be said to be completely groundless.

Biological mechanism of NMN

After oral administration, this chemical can be quickly absorbed by the digestive system and then converted into a substance called NAD+ (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide). The biological role of NAD+ is very important, it is involved in the key steps of cell energy metabolism. And indeed, some studies have found that with the emergence of aging and metabolic diseases such as diabetes, the level of NAD+ will decrease.

In this way, people will of course guess that if NAD+ is added to organisms, will it have the effect of delaying or even reversing aging? The results really found that in many organisms, including yeast, fruit flies and mice, supplementing with NAD+ can prolong life and reverse diseases caused by aging. One of the leaders of NMN research, Harvard Medical School professor David Sinclair, publicly declared that he eats NMN every day, and the effect is great.

There are biological mechanisms, animal model studies, and scientific propaganda.

Why do I suggest not to take?

The reason is simple. Felipe Sierra, a scientist at the American Institute of Aging, said, “I don’t want to try because I am not a mouse”.

This is certainly a joke, but the reasoning behind it is very serious. I have repeatedly emphasized that any medical method, whether it is drugs, vaccines or medical devices, should be tested in human clinical trials before large-scale application in the population, and it is best to be a randomized double-blind controlled trial with a large sample. In fact, more than 90% of drug candidates failed after completing laboratory studies and entering human clinical trials. They were either found to be unsafe for humans or found to be useless for diseases.

This is because biomedical research has not been able to make accurate and comprehensive descriptions and predictions of human body systems until today, and no animal model can accurately simulate human characteristics with 100% accuracy. The establishment of a drug’s biological mechanism and its effectiveness in animals does not mean that it is effective in humans.

Therefore, since the chemical substance NMN seems to be effective against aging, the reasonable idea should be to obtain the approval of the regulatory agency, carry out human clinical research, and see the results.

However, the developers of NMN chose to take a shortcut, not to engage in clinical trials, first to open the company, spread the channels, celebrity publicity, no matter so much, sell it as health care products, and make money.

I am very disapproving of this approach. In my opinion, this attitude itself illustrates some problems. It should be deemed that in most countries, including the United States where NMN was invented, and China, the regulatory logic for health care products and drugs is completely different. As long as it is safe for the human body, it can be registered, produced and sold as a health care product, but it is not allowed to say that it has any curative effect; and only if it is proved to be safe and has actual health benefits, can it be registered, produced and sold as a medicine. At present, the practice of selling as health products, but saying that it has various magical effects, is not authentic in any case.

Honest NMN study

but, there are people who study NMN honestly.

In 2020, Japanese scientists found 10 healthy men to give them NMN, and found that there were no side effects from short-term use. However, this study did not involve the question of “whether NMN is useful or not” at all.

In the past month, on April 22, 2021, the results of the first human clinical trial of NMN were officially published in the journal Science.

This study is a small-scale double-blind trial. Researchers recruited 25 middle-aged and elderly women after menopause, all of whom were obese and had problems with blood sugar regulation. Thirteen of them took 250 mg of NMN a day for 10 weeks; the other 12 took placebo pills. After the experiment, the researchers analyzed various biological indicators of this small group of people.

According to the experimental results in mice, NMN should be able to significantly improve the animal’s metabolic function, restore sensitivity to insulin, return blood sugar to normal, and have the effect of lowering blood lipids.

How about the data of the human body?

It should be said that some changes have indeed been seen. For example, scientists have found that in people taking NMN, the sensitivity of muscle tissue to insulin has increased, and the expression of genes related to blood sugar regulation in muscle cells has also changed. But more important indicators, such as these people’s weight, blood sugar, blood lipids, blood pressure, fatty liver, abdominal fat volume, etc., which are directly related to health, have not changed. The simple summary is that if the chemical substance NMN is eaten, it does seem to have some effects in human cells, and the direction of the effects is consistent with the prediction of the animal model. But at least in this study, eating NMN had no practical effect.

This of course does not mean that NMN must be a fake drug, because technically speaking, there may be room for exploration and optimization in terms of dosage, time of administration, targeted population, and targeted diseases. Even if NMN is useless for metabolic diseases and obese women, it cannot be said that it is useless for any disease or any population.

But in turn, we also don’t have any evidence that it is useful. Because so far the only such a small-scale human clinical trial, it also gave a negative result.

My suggestion

Based on this analysis, I think my suggestion is still as mentioned above: at least for now, NMN needs to be verified, and not recommend for you. When there is enough evidence in the future, it will be much better for you to try again.

By the way, with the development of society and the increase in life expectancy, delaying aging and preventing various diseases that accompany aging have become rigid needs of many people. Biological research and drug development in this area have naturally attracted the attention of many people. In fact, there is also a lot of serious research that deserves our follow-up.


What the HELL is NMN? Really anti-aging?