The last decade has seen a strong proliferation of therapeutic strategies for the treatment of metabolic and age-related diseases based on increasing cellular NAD+ bioavailability. NAD+ is crucial for several key physiological processes within the human body. A deficiency in NAD+, or a disruption in NAD+ homeostasis in the body, may impair these physiologic processes, which may result in different illnesses or disease conditions.
Given the integral role that NAD+ plays in all the body's major processes as detailed in the previous section, it is essential to ensure that NAD+ levels are optimal. If there are signs of NAD+ deficiency, such as in pellagra, which manifests as dermatitis, dementia, or diarrhea, supplemental IV NAD therapy may be warranted.
In addition to signs of NAD+ deficiency, there are other reasons for which an individual may consider receiving intravenous NAD+ supplementation; some of these reasons include the following:
- Addiction Therapy - One of the most common reasons why IV NAD+ therapy may be considered in some individuals is in the management of addiction. IV NAD+ may benefit patients weaning off opioid, alcohol, chemical, or prescription drug dependencies; it may also serve to minimize the severity of withdrawal symptoms. While the mechanism of how NAD+ works in this regard is still under investigation, it is believed that IV NAD+ helps flush drugs out of the body and reduce cravings.
- Improved Cognition - As has previously been stated, NAD+ has been shown to exert both protective and stimulatory effects on the brain. For this reason, IV NAD+ therapy may be administered to potentially enhance memory, improve concentration, improve the ability to focus, enhance brain regeneration, and improve overall neurological function. Studies are still ongoing regarding the precise means by which exogenous NAD+ supplementation exerts these effects.
- Chronic Fatigue - IV NAD+ therapy has been used in the management of individuals with chronic fatigue and low energy levels. NAD+ is an essential cofactor in the glycolytic pathway and tricarboxylic acid pathways; these pathways result in Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) production, which is the energy source of the human body. Through exogenous NAD+ supplementation, ATP levels in the body are increased which may have an effect on boosting energy levels and reducing feelings of fatigue.
- Athletic Performance - Due to its role in ATP production, some athletes have used IV NAD+ therapy to enhance their athletic capabilities and performance. IV NAD+ supplements may boost energy levels, improve cognition, and increase reaction times in athletes during competitions or other athletic events. In addition, studies have shown that NAD+ supplementation may assist in muscle development as well as muscle repair, leading to muscle hypertrophy and muscle hyperplasia.
- Pain Management - One of the more novel reasons why some individuals receive IV NAD+ therapy is in managing pain. NAD+ is known to exert significant anti-inflammatory actions within the body and may be used to reduce the inflammation that typically occurs with pain and, thereby, offers some relief from pain. Studies into the use of supplemental NAD+ as a form of pain control are still ongoing and the results so far are not yet definitive.
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