It’s no secret that as we get older, our cells, tissues, and organs start to malfunction. This decline may lead to fatigue, which is more frequent in the senior population, as a consequence of decreased physical activity. It is a well-known fact that sleep quality degrades as we age, contributing to cognitive impairment and, eventually, depressed emotions and states of mind. The individual’s physical and mental health suffers from depression and diminished cognition. That is why there is an increased risk of developing metabolic disorders and cardiovascular disease as a person ages.
Human Study On NMN.
Another human research was carried out on older persons, which was a 12-week study and got published in the journal Nutrients by Okura and colleagues from the University of Tsukuba. Excluded from this human research were individuals who drank excessive amounts of coffee, suffered from excessive stress, or were using anti-depressants. A morning group, an afternoon group, and a morning and afternoon placebo group were all included after these exclusion criteria were applied. To examine the effects of NMN administered at various times, participants were given 250 mg of NMN daily between waking up and noon or between 6:00 p.m. and bedtime.
Based on this, individuals were separated into four groups, with two receiving NMN in the morning or evening and the other two receiving a placebo. A set of physical performance tests were utilized to establish the participants’ level of function based on the results of the questionnaire. The study team measured various physical and mental tiredness indicators at baseline, six weeks during therapy, and after treatment (after 12 weeks of supplementation).
The Afternoon Administration of NMN Reduces Drowsiness and Improves Physical Function in the Elderly.
The 12-week study by Okura and colleagues examined the effects of ingesting NMN 250 mg capsules in the morning versus the afternoon or evening each day.
Researchers used Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) to measure sleep quality. This statistical approach examines sleep length, sleep disruption, daytime dysfunction, sleep quality, and sleep efficiency to measure subjective sleep quality. Researchers discovered that those who took NMN in the afternoon were the most successful in improving lower limb function and reducing drowsiness. According to the authors, this is the first human research to establish the effects of time-dependent NMN consumption on older persons.
The Japanese research team analyzed fatigue indices to see whether NMN supplementation improves the general quality of life, as predicted. The intervention decreased drowsiness, mental dullness, and weariness. Reducing drowsiness and tiredness improves concentration and cognitive function.
They found that taking the nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) in the afternoon at a dosage of 250 mg improved physical performance while decreasing drowsiness. The study’s findings suggest that NMN supplementation may enhance sleep and restore physical performance in older persons, therefore extending the number of healthy years we live.
Effects of Improvement in Sleep Quality.
Improvements in sleep had a favorable effect on the physical function assessments of people aged over 65. For instance, an assessment of physical fitness revealed that the time required to transition from sitting to standing five times in a row improved dramatically when NMN was provided in the afternoon. The 5-STS (5-times sit-to-stand) is a physical performance test that examines how fast an individual can sit down in a chair and stand back up five times without using their arms.
NMN also improved daytime drowsiness the most when supplemented in the evening. Although there was an observed placebo effect (meaning, people who took the placebo pills at night also experienced a perceived benefit to fatigue), the NMN-PM group reduced drowsiness the most. Improving daytime drowsiness through NMN could be meaningful for older adults, as chronic fatigue is more likely to occur with age and cause other comorbidities.
Additionally, the timed up-and-go exercise improved significantly. These findings indicate that giving NMN to older people improves their overall sleep and physical function, which may have a good effect on their moods and reduce their risk of developing age-related depression. With depression relieved by taking NMN in the afternoon, cognition may increase, resulting in greater health as a result of aging (improved health span) and vice versa.
“Therefore, research of the effects of the time-dependent intake of NMN was deemed relevant,” the authors write. “Two time zones (morning and afternoon) were established to determine the ideal intake time for maximal NMN absorption efficiency.” They continue, “This research implies that NMN supplementation in the afternoon is more successful at enhancing lower limb function and decreasing sleepiness in older persons, which might have further positive effects on their physical and mental health.”
At the same time, the researchers acknowledge the study’s limitations, especially the lack of a controlled diet including NMN and a daily consumption survey. As a consequence, this research was unable to evaluate if the participants’ daily diet influenced the efficacy of their NMN.
NMN enhances physical performance and subjective sleep quality, however, this association may not be causative. This makes it hard to see how NMN’s effect on sleep can help the body work better. The bottom line is that NMN improves both how well your body works and how well you sleep, but this may not mean that one causes the other. These findings also show that a widespread placebo effect was detected in this human study since participants who received the placebo also reported sleep-related benefits.
The research indicated that in future studies it would also be necessary to conduct a questionnaire on nutrients consumed on a daily basis and additional analysis to examine the double effect. Aside from that, the information in this study is similar to what has been found in other studies: that NMN makes people’s bodies work better.