Delivering the goods – getting the best out of NMN supplements

Capsules, liposomal, sublingual… we delve into the delivery methods available.

Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) holds promise in promoting health and longevity, making its efficient delivery to our systems crucial. With a surge in NMN supplements available, understanding the different delivery methods becomes imperative – it’s not just about consuming NMN, but ensuring our bodies can access and use it optimally. 

Longevity.Technology: Choosing the proper delivery method can be the difference between experiencing potential benefits and merely consuming a product without tangible results. This article highlights the significance of various NMN delivery methods, emphasizing the importance of making informed choices.

Delivering the goods – getting the best out of NMN supplements
NMN supplements, such as Wonderfeel’s Youngr, pictured above, are popular with longevity enthusiasts

Current preferred method: Capsules

While NMN’s potential benefits are widely recognized, how we introduce it to our bodies can influence its impact. The capsule format is the sole choice among leading scientific institutions for delivering NMN. This preference isn’t arbitrary – it’s grounded in evidence. 

Research consistently shows that NMN in capsule format successfully increases NAD levels in humans [1]. The familiar form of capsules makes them a practical and accessible choice for many users. 

Additionally, they offer a controlled and consistent dose, ensuring that individuals get the intended amount. But beyond convenience, the track record of capsules in research settings speaks volumes. 

When NMN is encapsulated, studies have consistently reported measurable boosts in NAD levels in participants [2]. As the discourse around NMN delivery evolves, the capsule format remains a benchmark, backed by scientific findings and widespread use.

Challenging the norm: Liposomal and sublingual NMN

The capsule might be the standard bearer in NMN delivery, but recent innovations and discussions have brought forth alternative methods, notably liposomal and sublingual forms. These methods are presented with claims of enhanced bioavailability, suggesting that they allow our bodies to use NMN more efficiently than capsules. But are these claims substantiated?

Liposomal delivery encapsulates NMN in lipid molecules, aiming to enhance its absorption [3]. If executed properly – something which is pretty tricky to do – this technology can protect the active ingredient, potentially aiding its passage through the digestive system and ensuring more reaches our cells. 

Sublingual delivery, on the other hand, involves placing NMN under the tongue, with the idea being that it gets absorbed directly into the bloodstream, bypassing the digestive system altogether.

However, when turning to science for answers, the narrative becomes less clear-cut. Dr Andrew Salzman, a Harvard University MD, professor of Medicine, and Chief Medical Officer for Wonderfeel, points to the lack of studies offering evidence that points to liposomal or sublingual NMN having superior bioavailability compared with capsules [4]. 

Dr Andrew Salzman is Chief Medical Officer at Wonderfeel

Dr Salzman told Longevity.Technology: “The field of drug delivery methods, especially liposomal and sublingual delivery, is very complicated. There are all kinds of different results depending on the drug. You can’t compare a liposomal delivery of drug X to another drug. To understand the effectiveness of liposomal and sublingual delivery methods, one needs to perform dissolution studies and permeability studies and measure different species’ and human intestinal uptake ability, as well as ADME studies.” ADME studies examine how a chemical is processed by the body and use radiolabeled molecules to investigate that chemical’s absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion.

In fact, the complexities of drug delivery highlight that it takes more work to compare these methods directly. Each drug or supplement might behave differently, even when using the same delivery technology. Furthermore, the liposomal approach has its own challenges, such as issues with stability and consistent absorption.

Moreover, if sublingual and liposomal forms were dramatically more effective, one would expect them to be more prominent in research settings. Yet, capsules remain the preferred choice in many leading scientific institutions.

While exploring alternative delivery methods is crucial for advancement, it’s equally important to differentiate between well-marketed claims and evidence-backed results. 

Currently, while liposomal and sublingual NMN methods present intriguing possibilities, with products like Genf20 Liposomal NMN offering consumers options; however, they are yet to establish their efficacy over the trusted capsule format conclusively.

Other emerging NMN delivery methods

As the interest in NMN’s potential benefits grows, so does the exploration of diverse delivery mechanisms. Beyond the more discussed liposomal, sublingual, and capsule methods, other innovative approaches are making their way into the conversation.

Dissolving tablets offer another oral option, aiming for convenience and potentially faster absorption. The idea is to allow the tablet to dissolve in the mouth, providing a direct route into the bloodstream. 

Nasal sprays represent a more unconventional method, suggesting that direct nasal delivery might enhance absorption and provide quicker results. The logic is grounded in the idea that the nasal passage might allow more direct access to the bloodstream, bypassing the digestive system’s potential barriers.

However, while these methods bring novelty, their effectiveness remains debatable. Much like the challenges faced by liposomal and sublingual forms, scientific evidence supporting these emerging methods is still sparse. 

It’s crucial to approach them with a discerning eye, recognizing that while innovation is vital, it must always be balanced with proven efficacy.

How do different NMN delivery methods truly compare?

Each delivery method, whether it’s a capsule, a liposomal form, or a sublingual approach, comes with its own set of challenges and advantages. 

The goal is not just to introduce NMN into the system but to ensure it reaches the target sites in the body effectively and efficiently. 

This involves considerations of how the NMN is absorbed, how it’s distributed throughout the body, how it’s metabolized, and eventually, how it’s excreted.

Dr Salzman highlights the depth of this complexity, pointing out that results can vary immensely depending on the drug in question. Thus, what works well for one molecule might not be suitable for another, even if they seem similar on the surface.

Furthermore, evaluating the effectiveness of a delivery method requires comprehensive studies. Dissolution studies, permeability evaluations, and human absorption assessments are a few research areas that can shed light on a method’s efficacy.

In essence, while the concept of drug delivery might seem straightforward, the underlying systems are intricate. As consumers and health professionals seek the best delivery method for NMN, intensely appreciating these complexities will be vital to making informed and effective decisions.

What does bioavailability mean for NMN?

In its simplest form, bioavailability refers to the proportion of a substance that enters the bloodstream when introduced into the body and remains available for use or storage [5].

For NMN and any supplement, high bioavailability implies that a more significant portion of the ingested substance can exert its therapeutic effects. It’s not just about consuming a supplement; it’s about how much of it becomes available for our cells to use.

Several factors influence bioavailability [6]. The delivery method is a prime determinant. As discussed, NMN can be introduced into the system through various means, including capsules, liposomal forms, and sublingual methods. Each has its own set of advantages and challenges affecting its bioavailability. Additionally, individual factors like metabolism, age, and overall health can also play a role.

Why does the NMN delivery method matter?

The delivery method – how NMN is introduced and absorbed into our bodies – plays a decisive role in determining the efficacy of this promising molecule.

Why is this so critical? The delivery method can profoundly influence how much NMN our body can use. Different methods offer varied absorption rates and efficiencies. 

For instance, while a capsule might slowly release NMN as it gets digested, a sublingual form aims for direct absorption into the bloodstream. The ultimate goal is to ensure that NMN not only enters our system but does so in a manner that allows optimal cellular uptake and utility.

The stakes are high. An incorrect or less effective delivery method might lead to diminished benefits, wasted resources, or unintended side effects. Conversely, an optimized delivery mechanism can elevate the therapeutic impact, ensuring users benefit from NMN’s purported advantages.

Hitting the target

The potential of NMN to enhance health and longevity is evident, yet its true effectiveness is closely tied to the delivery method used. As research and interest in NMN grow, it becomes essential to focus on evidence-supported methods to ensure optimal benefits. 

From tried-and-true capsules to newer delivery approaches, each offers its unique set of benefits and challenges. Making decisions grounded in solid scientific understanding will not only amplify NMN’s impact but also shape future advancements in its administration. As we explore NMN’s potential, ensuring its optimal delivery remains at the forefront of achieving its transformative health benefits.

[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9036060/
[2] https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-022-18272-y
[3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7238906/
[4] https://www.ndtv.com/partner-content/health-supplements/4-best-nmn-supplements-decoded-choose-the-right-nmn-supplement-for-you-4435785
[5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK557852/
[6] https://www.msdmanuals.com/professional/clinical-pharmacology/pharmacokinetics/drug-bioavailability