You don't need me to tell you that it's hard to look your best when you don't feel your best. But as we age, it seems as though we feel less than our best more and more often. That's because as we get older, it becomes harder and harder for our cells to produce energy. We start to feel a bit more run down, we may notice our weight beginning to creep up, and we may begin skipping the gym more often than we used to. With less energy, it can be harder to maintain the good habits that help us look and feel good.
As you can imagine, the race is on to find ways to combat this loss of energy and slow the associated effects of the aging process. Fortunately, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine recently published a study in Cell Metabolism that may be the beginning of an exciting breakthrough.
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The researchers began supplementing groups of mice with high and low doses of NMN and comparing them to a control group. At first, they didn't notice any differences among the groups. But as the mice aged, the mice receiving the NMN supplementation started faring better in terms of their skeletal muscles, liver function, bone density, eye function, insulin sensitivity, immune function, body weight, and physical activity levels. When the mice were young, they were all able to make plenty of NMN on their own, but as they aged, the differences in the groups became much more obvious.
In particular, the NMN seemed to help improve energy metabolism by boosting the performance of the mice's mitochondria, the cells' powerhouses. The mice were also less likely to gain weight even if they ate more food because they had enough energy to stay physically active. These findings are so intriguing that researchers at Keio University School of Medicine have begun investigating supplemental NMN in humans. Although the levels of supplemental NMN used in these studies aren't yet available for purchase, NMN is naturally present in a number of foods, including broccoli, cabbage, cucumber, edamame, and avocado. While research is being conducted, it can't hurt to stock up on these foods. They're full of vitamins and nutrients beyond just NMN that will support your health, helping you look and feel great!