What is NMN? Nicotinamide Mononucleotide 101

What is Nicotinamide Mononucleotide (NMN)? 

Would you like to slow down the aging process? To experience youthful skin with fewer wrinkles and have better mobility and insulin sensitivity as your body starts to hit older age?

Well, modern science is exploring the benefits of some components that are crucial in how the aging process unfolds. 

NMN is one of them. 

Overview of NMN

Beta-nicotinamide mononucleotide, also known as NMN, is a natural component produced by every living cell in your body. 

It’s best known as the molecule that activates the sirtuins, or longevity genes. 

As you age, the production of NMN starts to decline. By the time you’re in your 50s, you have half the natural supply of NMN compared to your 20s. 

Could the declining levels of NMN be supplemented and, as a result, slow down the aging process?

This article explains what NMN is, its role in the body, its effectiveness, and how to supplement it for maximum benefits.

Key Takeaways 

  • NMN is a vital molecule present in all living cells that’s used to produce energy and repair DNA damage. It could potentially promote longevity and healthy aging. 
  • NMN serves as a precursor to NAD+, a coenzyme essential for various cellular functions, including metabolism and gene expression. 
  • NAD+ is important in the production of sirtuins, enzymes that safeguard cell health and function. 
  • Maintaining high NAD+ levels, potentially through NMN supplementation, might slow down the aging process and prevent chronic diseases. 
  • NMN is preferred over NAD+ as a supplement due to its mechanism for entering cells and its subsequent conversion to NAD+ within cells. 
  • You can find NMN in everyday foods like edamame, avocado, and broccoli. Although the levels obtained from diet might be insufficient to boost NAD+ levels significantly, a balanced diet can support the natural production of NAD+. 
  • Noted scientists like Dr. David Sinclair are exploring NMN’s potential benefits, especially concerning aging and longevity. 

What is Nicotinamide Mononucleotide (NMN)?

Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) is a natural molecule produced in all living cells of the body. It powers your entire system by playing a key role in cellular energy production. 


NMN is a nucleotide or a molecule that serves as the building blocks of DNA and RNA. It’s made out of nicotinamide base, a phosphate group, and ribose sugar. Researchers investigate this molecule for a variety of its potential benefits, including [1]:

  • Longevity 
  • Diabetes 
  • Brain and heart health
  • Sleep 

World-renowned professors, like Harvard’s Dr. David Sinclair, are personally benefiting from and exploring this molecule for longevity and aging. 

NMN is a potent precursor for NAD+, the molecule connected to the negative effects of aging.   

As the levels of NAD+ decrease with older age, bodily functions decline. You start to notice white hairs, more pigmented spots, fine lines and wrinkles. Your energy and memory begin to dwindle. 

Animal studies show that NMN may support heart function and reduce tiredness with little side effects. As a result, people feel more energetic, have better memory, and notice decreasing signs of aging. 

Supplementation with NMN may slow down and improve some of the core aging processes. It could be more beneficial to take NMN supplements boosted with other components, like resveratrol, Astrion, and Verbasnol. 

Depending on what you’re after, the Mytogenix Flawless RX formula is infused with clinically tested and patented ingredients that support anti-aging and skin revitalization. This incredible formula promotes cellular health, reduces inflammation, hydrates the skin, and assists in collagen production.


In addition to hyaluronic acid, the Mytogenix Flawless RX is made out of four key components: 

  • NMN

  • A dominant ingredient in our age-defying formula, NMN (500 mg) is the main compound that reverses vascular aging by raising NAD+ levels in the blood. This component plays a crucial role in the decline of NAD+ levels in the cell, which leads to aging and the development of chronic conditions.  

  • Astrion®

  • Astrion is an exclusive and scientifically evaluated plant-derived compound that augments the skin's firmness, smoothness, and hydration. It fosters an innate synthesis of collagen and hyaluronic acid.

  • Verbasnol™

  • The antioxidants present in Verbasnol rejuvenate the skin, mitigating the negative consequences of sun exposure, oxidative damage, and dryness while preserving the skin's moisture balance and flexibility.

  • Dermaval®

  • Dermaval aids in sustaining the body's collagen concentrations, offering vital nutrients that foster the production of collagen naturally within our system.

     An exceptional blend of potent and exclusive ingredients, the Mytogenix Flawless RX contributes to the wellness and vitality of the skin. 

    NMN Drink Mix

    NMN is Essential for the Production of NAD+

    NMN is one of the main precursors of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+). 

    NAD+ is a vital coenzyme responsible for cell growth, metabolism, and survival. Simply put, NAD+ takes the food we eat and turns it into energy for the cell. It’s also involved in processes like gene expression and DNA repair. 

    Due to its essential functions, NAD+ is the most abundant molecule in the body after water, present in all living cells. This molecule is necessary for life.

    Within the cell, NMN converts to NAD+, creating a more refined molecule that the body can use for metabolism and energy production. 

    In normal conditions, the higher the amount of NMN available in the body, the more NAD+ your body can produce. 

    NAD+ deficiency can lead to a range of metabolic, neurodegenerative, and mental disorders. A few examples of age-related conditions that may be linked to NAD+ deficiency are: 

    • Obesity 
    • Depression
    • Anxiety  
    • Type II diabetes  
    • Parkinson’s and 
    • Alzheimer’s

    NAD+ is Important for the Production of Sirtuins

    NAD+ is a coenzyme that powers the creation of a special class of enzymes known as sirtuins (SIRT1–7) or “guardians of the cell.” 

    Sirtuins are proteins that support the health of the mitochondria, or the powerhouse of the cell. They also promote the survival of the cell thanks to their active role in repairing DNA and protecting the cell against metabolic stresses.

    The human body has seven sirtuins (SIRT1–7) located in different subcellular sections, including [2]:

    • Nucleus: SIRT1, SIRT6, and SIRT7
    • Cytoplasm: SIRT2
    • Mitochondria: SIRT3, SIRT4, and SIRT5


    The mitochondria produces ATP, an organic molecule that fuels cellular function and all living cells rely on. When the mitochondria is unhealthy, it produces less ATP, which eventually contributes to the death of the cell. Another factor that leads to cell death is DNA damage. 

    Therefore, a healthy production of sirtuins promotes the survival of the cell and maintains the health of the mitochondria. 

    According to professor David Sinclar, the decline in sirtuin activity as we age is believed to be the main reason the body develops diseases as opposed to when we’re young.

    Cells contain molecular machinery to repair DNA damage, which consumes NAD+ and energy molecules. An important DNA repair protein, PARP, depends on NAD+ to function. PARP increases as DNA damage accumulates as part of normal aging, which, as a result, decreases the levels of NAD+.

    Aging & the Decline in NAD+ Levels 

    Aging leads to declining NAD+ levels in several tissues throughout the body. More precisely, the decline is believed to happen thanks to age-related cellular dysfunction and impairment in tissue function.

    This is believed to disrupt the balance between the energy produced and the energy consumed by the cell. Older adults have lower NAD+ levels than younger adults [3].      

    In older adults, physical activity and additional supplementation may be necessary to provide sufficient amounts of NMN, which we naturally get from certain foods containing vitamin B3 (niacin). In the body, the enzyme nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT) converts niacin into NMN.

    Exercise may potentially increase NAD+ levels naturally by stimulating the production of NAMPT, potentially helping counteract the age-related decline. A study published in Physiological Reports showed that the NAD+ levels in older adults improved after 12 weeks of aerobic and resistance exercise [4]. 

    The levels of NAD+ also decline in people with chronic illnesses, such as cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative disease, obesity, and sarcopenia (age-related muscle wasting). 

    Restoring NAD+ levels, like supplementing the cell with NAD+ precursors like NMN, could mitigate the negative effects of aging and prevent (or reverse) the development of chronic diseases. People suffering from conditions like diabetes and liver disease tend to have lower levels of NMN and NAD [5].    

    Benefits of NMN And NAD+

    NMN plays an important role in the body, but its benefits are mainly seen through the production of NAD+. Every cell in your body uses NAD+ to function properly. It also requires plenty of NMN to produce NAD+ and support functions like:


    • Energy metabolism
    • DNA repair
    • Gene expression
    • Circadian rhythm
    • Inflammation
    • Stress response within the cell

    Here’s a breakdown of the potential benefits of NMN and NAD+: 

    May Support Healthy Aging & Longevity 

    Most studies on NNM are in vitro or on animals, but they show that NMN may support healthy aging. It’s still early to see the impact of this molecule on human lifespan, but one study found that NMN administration could prolong mice’s lifespan by up to 29% [6, 1]. 

    Studies in old mice also show that NMN may help aging muscles. High levels of NMN in the blood improved muscle function and strength in mice [7]. 

    NMN is an essential and primary precursor to NAD+ biosynthesis. Without NAD+ production, there won’t be proper functioning of cells. 

    NAD+ may increase longevity by activating sirtuins, a group of proteins that repair DNA. The activity of sirtuins is linked to longevity, while low-NAD+ levels are associated with age-related diseases.

    We need clinical evidence on the potential benefits in humans to confirm its benefits as a dietary supplement. However, several human studies, including one in 10 Japanese men, have found that oral NMN supplements (100, 250, and 500 mg) increased the levels of NAD+ and other by-products in the blood [8]. 

    May Increase Cellular Energy 

    In old mice, orally administered NMN increased stamina and endurance by 80%, according to a study. 

    By raising NAD+ levels, this component may raise cellular energy production. This could lead to improved endurance, exercise performance, and vitality [9].

    May Assist Cardiovascular Health

    Research in mice indicates that NMN supplements may support cardiovascular health by improving blood flow and reducing inflammation [10]. 

    The study also suggests that high NAD+ levels in the blood reversed age-related arterial damage in mice, which could guard against heart disease.    

    May Support the Immune System 

    MNM supplementation may enhance the immune system and potentially help combat infections and maintain overall health [11]. 

    May Support Cognitive Function

    MNM supplementation may enhance cognitive function and protect against age-related cognitive decline. Animal studies show that NMN could improve cognition and blood flow in the brains of elderly mice. [12, 13]. 

    NMN treatment Results

    Researchers confirmed the efficiency of NMN treatment thanks to increased NAD+ levels in the blood vessels of aged mice that took NMN [source].

    May Improve Metabolism 

    Aging can considerably decline metabolism, which could increase the risk of diseases. NMN could improve plasma lipid profiles, reduce aging-associated weight gain, and enhance physical activity [14, 15, 16]. 

    A Role in Repairing Damaged DNA

    NAD+ is essential for the workings of PARPs, important enzymes that repair damaged DNA. Lack of NAD+ may cause fewer DNA reparations, which can accelerate aging and lead to other problems.


    Mice given NMN have significantly less DNA damage, measured by alpha-H2AX, a biomarker for DNA damage. Old mice that didn’t receive NMN treatment had much more DNA damage than old mice that received treatment [17]. 


    MNM could also improve mitochondrial function. The power plants of our cells provide the energy our cells need to work and survive. When we age, the mitochondria become damaged, which is a biological cause of aging. 

    May Have Protective Effects on Brain

    NAD+ may modulate the production of a protein that protects cells from suffering impaired mitochondrial function and oxidative stress. This is important because these cellular stressors are related to Alzheimer’s and other neurological diseases [18]. 

    May Assists with Jet Lag 

    No one likes the fatigue, weakness, and mental fog that comes with jet lags. The good news is that NAD+ may help ease this state of being by helping adjust your internal clock, helping circadian rhythm disorders [19]. 

    Do NMN Supplements Work? 

    Quality NMN supplements are expensive, so you naturally want to know if they work. There’s no set-in-stone research that proves the effectiveness of these supplements in every human organism. However, few research studies in humans show promising results. 


    A 2021 study** published in Science investigated the effects of taking 250 mg of NMN daily for 10 weeks in postmenopausal women who were overweight, obese, or at risk of prediabetes. The women who took NMN showed increased insulin sensitivity and signaling [20]. 


    ** Note: Two of the authors in this study are inventors of patents using NMN.


    Another 2021 study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition examined the effects of NMN in amateur runners during exercise training. The runners, ages 27 to 50, took oral NMN supplements for 6 weeks or a placebo. The dosages were 300, 600, and 1200 mg daily [21]. 


    By week 6, the runners who took NMN showed increased aerobic capacity compared to placebo. The higher the dose, the greater the increase, which the researchers in the study connect to an increased oxygen intake. 


    Another study in humans investigated the effects of NMN on sleep quality in Japanese elders 65 and older. The participants received 250 mg of NMN supplements or a placebo for 12 weeks [22]. 


    The researchers found that NMN supplementation did not appear to improve sleep quality. However, they noticed improvement in drowsiness and muscle responsiveness in the participants who received NMN in the afternoon.


    There’s limited research on NMN, so it’s too soon to verify its effectiveness and long-term outcomes in humans. But, these few research studies show that NMN increases the levels of NAD+ in the blood, so you need to try them and see their effects on you.  

    Should I Take NAD+ Instead of NMN? 

    This is a very valid question with a science-backed answer behind it. 


    Namely, taking NMN leads to conversion to NAD+ and its positive effects of NAD+. However, taking NAD+ won’t yield the same effects because NAD+ has no mechanism for entering the cell.  


    Cells have a receptor for NMN, a special protein resting on the surface of the cell that attaches to the molecule and transports it into the cell. In the cell, NMN is converted into NAD+ through cellular enzymes.  

    Dosing NMN Supplements 

    Dosing NMN supplements can be tricky, but the good news is you can start with the lowest possible dose (100 mg daily) and increase gradually. Before you start a new supplement, make sure you consult a healthcare professional.


    For example, let’s take 900 mg of NMN as the upper limit. According to a 2023 study, oral dosing of 900 mg of NMN daily is well-tolerated and generally safe for adults. This experiment in humans showed that the 900 mg group experienced the highest efficacy [23].


    When dosing any supplement, consider your body weight, metabolism, pre-existing health conditions, and potential interactions or sensitivity to medications. 


    There’s limited data on NMN, so it’s difficult to determine the ideal dose. Low doses of 250 mg of NMN per day may be beneficial in some people, while others need a maximum of 1,200 mg daily. 


    Luckily, studies show that this supplement is safe to take regardless of the dose. 


    One study that involved amateur runners showed that higher doses of NMN supplementation (1,200 mg) compared to lower doses (300 mg) brought greater aerobic benefits. Overall, there was no significant difference between the benefits provided by the two different doses [21]. 


    Our Mytogenix Bio NMN capsules come at a recommended dosage of 2 capsules a day. So you’ll get 1000 mg of NMN and 300 mg of resveratrol. This recommendation is specific to our own formula, which also includes resveratrol in the mix. 


    Resveratrol is a plant compound, polyphenol, that acts like an antioxidant. It’s found in red wine, some berries, grapes, and peanuts. Research shows that this component has potential anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and cognitive benefits. 

    How Much NMN to Take Based on Age? 

    If you’re younger than 25, you don’t have to worry about boosting your NAD+ levels with NMN because you’ve got plenty. 


    Some people experiment with these supplements at a young age, so if you’re interested, maybe you can start taking them after 25, as the long-term effects haven’t been researched. 


    • Younger than 35: 250 mg daily (every morning, 1 hour before breakfast). Up the dosage to 500 mg per day after a week or two. 
    • Thirty-five and older: 500 mg a day. Up the dosage to 1 g per day after a week or two.  

    NMN Safety And Side Effects

    According to studies, NMN is generally safe and well-tolerated in humans and animals. 


    Some studies observed minimal side effects even in doses of up to 1,200 mg daily. 

    According to a 2021 study published in Frontiers in Nutrition, NMN users may experience mild side effects. The study compared 30 subjects taking 250 mg of NMN or a placebo daily for 12 weeks. Some of the side effects include [24]: 

    • Abdominal pain
    • Diarrhea
    • Upper respiratory issues
    • Gas

    There are several concerns about the safety of NMN supplements (not NMN as a component), such as: 

    Fake Products 

    The market is flooded with cheap and fake imitations of NMN products. Unfortunately, a lot of these are not pure NMN but contain other, sometimes undisclosed, compounds that raise safety concerns.  

    Some of these products are made at non-certified facilities, which poses a greater risk for impurities. The FDA doesn’t allow the sale of NMN as a dietary supplement, so there are no regulations around how these products are made and tested. 

    Reports show that a large percentage of NMN supplements don’t contain the listed ingredients and percentage of NMN. 

    Bad Manufacturing Practices

    To yield NMN in substantial quantities, manufacturers rely on chemical synthesis, which is a process that relies on environmentally harmful solvents. 

    Products made through chemical synthesis can contain hard-to-eliminate contaminants and byproducts in the final output.

    Processes like enzymatic synthesis are used to create products with an impressive yield and unparalleled purity. But, they come with a high price tag, so they are not overly present on the market. 

    For your safety and assurance, you should opt for well-established brands that uphold transparency regarding their manufacturing practices. NMN is difficult to manufacture, so products tend to be more expensive.

    How to Take NMN Supplements? 

    The two most common ways to take NMN supplements are orally and sublingually. 

    Research shows that NMN is well-tolerated and absorbed when taken orally. Oral NMN supplements are more stable in the gut and bloodstream compared to other NAD+ boosters.


    NMN supplements can also be taken sublingually. You can open up the capsule and pour the contents under your tongue. 


    Taking NMN in the morning is recommended by some experts to help boost and maintain NAD+ levels in the body. Others recommend taking this supplement shortly before you have your first meal (if intermittent fasting). 


    NAD+ helps regulate circadian rhythms or when you are awake and when it’s time to sleep. Therefore, taking NMN in the morning may collaborate with and boost your circadian rhythm. 


    You can also mix olive oil with your NMN powder because olive oil activates the longevity enzyme SIRT1 and boosts mitochondria health. If you decide to put olive oil in the mix, make sure you make the blend daily to avoid degradation of the molecules [25].  

    NMN-Rich Foods: Can You Increase NMN Naturally? 

    A variety of foods contain NMN, but the levels obtained through diet are not sufficient to create a significant boost. 


    Research studies on humans and animals typically use concentrated forms of NMN that truly make a difference in the levels in the blood. One study showed that administering NMN supplements to aged men more than doubled NAD+ levels in the blood. The researchers used 250 mg/day of oral NMN supplements. 


    If you want to go the natural route to boost your NMN levels, here is a list of foods that contain this molecule [6]:

    Type of food

    NMN levels (per 100 g)


    0.47–1.88 mg


    0.36–1.60 mg


    0.25–1.12 mg


    0.0–1.01 mg


    0.0–0.9 mg

    Cucumber seed

    0.56 mg

    Cucumber peel

    0.65 mg


    0.26–0.30 mg

    Raw beef

    0.06–0.42 mg


    0.22 mg


    These foods naturally contain niacin, a B vitamin. Animal studies have found that oral NMN is well absorbed in the gut, but more research is needed on how these foods increase the NAD levels in the cell.


    According to one study, you’ll need 100 kg of broccoli or 416 kg of beef to obtain 250 mg of NMN daily [14]. 


    On the other hand, quality anti-aging and longevity supplements typically contain higher NMN dosages of up to 500 g per capsule. Despite supplementing your body with this molecule, it’s important to continue with regular exercise and a balanced diet to support the NAD+ production in the body.

    Is NMN FDA-approved? 

    In 2022, the FDA stated that NMN cannot be sold as a dietary supplement in the U.S. 

    This announcement came several months after the company Inner Mongolia Kingdomway Pharmaceutical Limited, also known as "Kingdom," submitted an application to the FDA to classify NMN as a new dietary ingredient (NDI). This step is required for companies wanting to sell dietary supplements containing an ingredient not previously sold in the U.S. before October 15, 1994.

    The FDA emphasized that any items undergoing significant clinical trials or are being considered as a new drug cannot be included in the dietary supplement category. Since NMN was being explored as a potential new drug before it could be legally sold as a dietary supplement, the FDA decided it cannot be categorized as a dietary supplement for the time being.

    As a result, any companies that are selling NMN products as supplements in the U.S. are not aligned with the FDA's rules.


    Frequently Asked Questions on NMN 


    Q: Is it worth taking an NMN supplement?

    A: You won’t know until you try it, but supplementing the body with NMN can stimulate the metabolic system. 


    As a result, you may notice benefits like a boost in energy and physical activity, improved insulin sensitivity and suppressed age-associated weight gain. These potential benefits typically happen with minimum side effects.  


    Q: What is NMN supplement side effects?

    A: According to a 2021 study published in Frontiers in Nutrition, NMN can cause mild side effects. The participants in the study took 250 milligrams of NMN (or placebo) and experienced mild abdominal pain, gas, diarrhea, and upper respiratory health issues [24]. 


    Q: Is NMN just vitamin B?

    A: NMN is not vitamin B3 (niacin), but it’s synthesized from it in the form of nicotinamide. Niacin is a water-soluble vitamin that exists in two forms: nicotinic acid and nicotinamide. 


    So, NMN is not a vitamin itself but a derivative of niacin or vitamin B3. They are very similar but have different uses. The enzyme nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT) helps transform nicotinamide to nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) [26].


    Therefore, NMN is a derivative of the nicotinamide form of B3, but it’s not considered a vitamin in a traditional sense. Vitamins are essential for the body to function and cannot be synthesized in sufficient quantities by the body. Our diets supply us with vitamins that help support various functions.  


    Q: Is it safe to take NMN daily?

    A: Yes, according to research, doses of up to 900 mg (in some studies, 1,200 mg) are safe to consume daily. With that said, there’s no research on the long-term effects of NMN when taken daily, so lowering the dose or taking breaks might be beneficial. 


    Q: Is NMN hard on the liver?

    A: Research shows that NMN is safely metabolized in the blood without affecting the liver, kidneys, lipid metabolism, glucose metabolism, and leukocytes [27].  


    On the contrary, NMN plays a key role in maintaining liver health by reducing collagen deposits and limiting problematic liver enzymes. 


    Q: What age can you take NMN?

    A: There’s no recommended age on when to take NMN. If you’re in your 20s, your NMN levels are still pretty high, but they start to rapidly decline in your 30s.


    There are no studies that demonstrate adverse effects of taking NMN at a young age. Studies in mice are done from a very young age to old age to see progression and effectiveness. 


    It’s up to you to decide when to start taking NMN supplements. Some experts state that taking NMN young may be the best preventative treatment for cell repair and maintenance.     


    Q: Does NMN increase testosterone?

    A: NMN could increase testosterone. According to one study, men who consumed NMN supplements for 12 weeks experienced an improvement in muscle function (strength and performance). 


    Although the researchers stated that the exact mechanisms behind this are unknown, testosterone is considered an anabolic hormone because it promotes muscle growth and repair, but it’s unknown whether an increase in NMN plays a direct role in testosterone levels. 


    Q: Does NMN reduce wrinkles?

    A: Studies connect NMN with fewer signs of aging because it could stimulate collagen production and reduce inflammation. 


    By activating sirtuins, NMN may help protect the skin against wrinkles, UV, and helps wounds heal faster. 


    Q: Does NMN break a fast?

    A: According to experts like Dr. Sinclair, NMN doesn’t break a fast. This compound contains no calories, no sugar and doesn’t stimulate insulin production. 

    If the product you’re consuming contains artificial sweeteners that are not disclosed on the label, then you will break your fast.

    Experts are divided regarding the best time to take NMN supplements. Some recommend taking them in the morning, while others when you break your fast (with the first large meal of the day). 

    Dr. Sinclair, for instance, takes NMN in the morning with some resveratrol that he mixes with a small amount of full-fat yogurt. There’s a lot of discussion about which foods break a fast (some believe sugar-free coffee doesn’t break a fast), but in general, it’s believed that unsweetened foods that contain below 50 calories are fine to consume. 


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