Reprinted with the kind permission of Life Extension.
January 23 2019. An article that appeared on January 22, 2019 in Cell Reports revealed a potential benefit for a form of vitamin B3 known as nicotinamide riboside (NR) for lactating mothers and their children. Nicotinamide riboside has been shown to elevate levels of the cellular metabolite NAD, which has been associated with improvements in glucose, fatty liver, life span and more.
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Charles Brenner, PhD, of the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine and colleagues observed that lactating mice given NR produced more milk than those who did not receive the compound. Pups nursed by supplemented mice were larger and had better metabolic health compared to those nursed by animals that did not receive NR, and the benefits were long lasting. When the mice born to mothers that received NR reached adulthood, they exhibited less anxiety and better brain development, motor coordination, memory, learning, stress resilience and physical health compared to mice whose mothers did not receive the supplement. The researchers found that the milk contained higher levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which enhances brain development.
“NR supplementation starts an amazing cascade where the resources that are supposed to flow from the liver to the mammary and into the milk are all ramped up. In addition, BDNF and likely many other bioactive factors in the milk are also increased,” Dr Brenner explained.
“Improving the mom’s micronutrition with NR supplementation increased the quantity and quality of her milk, and the effects on the offspring were apparent from the day the mouse pups opened their eyes and started to move around,” he stated. “Now we want to know if NR can safely increase lactation in women and if taking NR increases the levels of bioactive factors in human milk like it does in mice and rats.”