Best Energy featuring Niagen by Doctor's Best
contains premium quality Niagen, which supplies nicotinamide riboside (RN), a nutrient broadly involved in human energy production and metabolic regulation. NR occurs naturally in foods, and is a meta-bolic starter for NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide), which our cells absolutely require for their mitochondria to make energy. NR also helps regulate cell energy utilization to support structural integrity in the brain, muscles, liver and other organs.
Humans have two enzymes that together convert NR into NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, also symbolized NAD+).(1) NAD is fundamental to human energy production, due to the many enzymes that use it.(2) Beyond supporting our energy needs, NAD from NR also supports our capacity to respond adaptively to changing nutrient availability and to various other forms of stress.(3,4) Both NR and NAD belong to the vital ORTHO nutrient category.(5,6)
What are Ortho Nutrients?
ORTHO nutrients are those nutrients that human enzymes require in order to function.(5,6) In 1968, two-time Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling defined ORTHO nutrients as substances "orthodox" or "right" for the body, and outlined their importance for brain health.(5) In 2002, Berkeley professor Bruce Ames' group further documented the essentiality of ORTHO nutrients for a broad range of human enzyme systems.(6) Taking the ORTHO nutrient NR helps ensure the body has a steady supply of ORTHO NAD.(1)
NR and NAD Benefits
As a dietary supplement, NR contributes to the widespread availability of NAD within our cells.(1,3) Relying on NAD, various enzymes extract high-energy electrons from the foods and convert their electronic energy into chemical energy, primarily in the form of ATP (adenosine triphosphate, our "energy currency").(1-4) But, many other enzymes not directly involved in energy production also require NAD.(1-4,7,8)
Human cells carry at least 7 sirtuin enzymes, which are widely distributed within the cells and regulate a great variety of life processes.(4,7,8) The sirtuins are directly responsive to NAD—when NAD is high the sirtuins are active, and when NAD is low they become inactive.4 The sirtuins likely serve as "NAD sensors", responding to changing NAD levels by stimulating or inhibiting other key enzyme systems.(4,8) As a convenient dietary source of NAD, NR supports the beneficial actions of the sirtuins.
Niagen Facilitates Glucose and Fat Utilization for Energy
The bulk of the body's ATP typically comes from processing glucose, obtained mostly from the digestion of dietary carbohydrate.(2) This process begins in the cell cytoplasm and ends in the mitochondria, the cells' microscopic "energy powerhouses".(2,3) NAD levels are closely linked to ATP levels, so that when ATP production declines, NAD levels also decline.(3,4) Whenever the glucose supply gets low, both ATP and NAD levels go down. This triggers the sirtuins to switch the energy enzymes to utilize alternative energy sources.(8)
When glucose is insufficient, the sirtuins can adapt the cell to convert fats into ATP.(8) The sirtuins also can activate enzymes that promote the burning of long chain and very long chain fatty acids, beyond just the burning of short-chain fatty acids that would more typically occur.(7-9) This sirtuin effect tends to maximize fat-burning to meet the needs for energy.
Under extreme conditions of nutrient depletion, when both glucose and fats are insufficient, sirtuins also can switch the mitochondria over to burning amino acids (from proteins) or acetate (from alcohol), to satisfy the body's ongoing crucial needs for ATP.(7-10) SIRT3 located within the mitochondria even can upregulate the oxidative phosphorylation complex, the mitochondrial enzymes most directly responsible for producing ATP.(7)
Enhances Mitochondrial Energy Production
NR has been identified in cow's milk and yeast, and is likely present in other foods.(7) When taken by mouth NR enters into the cells, wherein it is converted to NAD that is also available to the mitochondria.(1,7) Sirtuin 3 (SIRT3) and at least 2 other sirtuins located within the mitochondria are able to "sense" the mitochondrial NAD levels and react by regulating key aspects of mitochondrial function.(11) Their actions include both controlling ATP production in the mitochondria and regulating the mitochondria’s defenses against runaway free radicals.(8-12)
Mitochondria are the major cell sites that use oxygen, in order to "burn" caloric nutrients and generate ATP.(2) An unavoidable consequence of this function is the mitochondria are also the major cell sites that generate potentially harmful oxygen free radicals.(12) As the mitochondria's enzymes work with oxygen, which is a highly reactive element, a small proportion of it escapes their control and is converted to oxygen free radicals.(2) When sufficient NAD is available within the mitochondria, their sirtuins regulate their antioxidant defense against oxygen free radicals while simultaneously regulating their ATP production.(7,8,12)
The sirtuins within the mitochondria work in concert with those outside the mitochondria to regulate energy-related life processes in the cell as a whole. For example, SIRT3 in the mitochondria coordinates with SIRT1 in the cell cytoplasm to regulate oxygen utilization,(1) facilitate disposal of mitochondrial waste products,(4) and ensure sufficient supplies of food-derived caloric nutrients for the mitochondria to "burn" and make into ATP.(7-10)
Promotes Energy-Dependent Regulation of Cell Functions
Of the seven human sirtuin enzymes, SIRT1 is currently the most well understood as a versatile mediator of metabolic adaptive responses.(8,13) With its high sensitivity to fluctuating NAD levels, it functions as a key metabolic regulator of glucose production and insulin sensitivity. SIRT1 is able to enhance antioxidant defenses in response to increases in oxygen free radical production,(13) enhances DNA repair following damage by free radicals or other toxins, and generally assists the cell to react adaptively to stressful challenges.(12,13)
The PARP (poly ADP-ribose polymerases) are another enzyme group that rely on NAD. They also seem to be NAD sensors and also have important roles in cell regulation.(14) These enzymes help the cells adapt to agents or events that threaten DNA, gene, or protein integrity. Closely related to the PARP is the ADP-ribose enzyme that also uses NAD, as do the CD38 and CD157 enzymes known to be involved with regulating calcium.(1,3) These various enzyme systems along with the sirtuins create a demand for NAD that may be partly offset by supplementing the diet with NR.
Supports NAD Availability for Brain Health
Nerve cells are the body's largest cells and are among the most active.(2) They make and use a lot of energy, and consequently require relatively high amounts of NAD. They are able to import NR from the outside, and carry the enzyme Nrk2 (nicotinamide riboside kinase 2) that helps them convert NR into NAD.(1) As with other cell types, in nerve cells rising NAD levels can signal sirtuin and other enzyme systems to adapt to regulate adaptation to stressful challenges.(13,15)
SIRT1 is proven important for brain health. Findings from several studies on humans with SIRT1 mutations indicate SIRT1 is centrally involved with healthy mood regulation. (11,16) Animal studies strongly suggest SIRT1 is also important for healthy learning, memory, and behavior.(11) SIRT1 also can stimulate growth factor actions to promote brain adaptability ("neuroplasticity").(8,12)
*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.