Going back at least as far as the 1500’s, with Ponce De Leon’s discovery of Florida while on a quest to find the Fountain Of Youth, humans have been making every attempt possible to stave off the aging process. While the Fountain of Youth still remains to be found, and cosmetic companies have spent decades creating products designed to help diminish the appearance of aging, more and more people are turning to a change in diet to prevent the advent of their golden years.
A recent study has shown that a compound exists in broccoli, cabbage, cucumber, edamame and avocado that may lead to a decrease in the signs of physical aging. The compound, nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN), was tested on laboratory mice and found that not only did it reduce skeletal muscle issues, poor liver function, lower bone density and declining eye function, but it was shown to also help boost metabolism.
As the body gets older, it slowly begins to lose its ability to produce nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD), a coenzyme form of the vitamin niacin. As NAD alone is not effective in slowing or reversing the aging process when it is administered directly, it must be administered indirectly. Thus, scientists looked to nicotinamide mononucleotide instead. Once the NMN was mixed with water and given to the mice, it quickly reached the blood stream.
As the NMN reaches the blood stream, it is rapidly converted into NAD. In the clinical trials, the scientists observed that the mice we experiencing positive effects with regard to immune function, insulin levels, body weight, eyesight, liver function, bones and skeletal muscles. They also noted a marked increased in physical activity status. It should be mentioned that these trials only appeared to have an effect on older lab mice, while younger mice did not see any change. This means that the older test mice were experiencing the same energy levels and metabolic functions as seen in the younger mice.
Since humans also rely on the same process to derive energy, scientists are hopeful that future use of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide will become a method by which people can essentially live healthier, longer. The next step in the testing procedure will move from laboratory animals to humans in clinical trials in Japan. Should those trials prove successful, it would appear that Ponce De Leon’s quest for the Fountain of Youth could have simply required planting a garden containing cabbage, cucumbers and broccoli.