We are probably about a year from an effective COVID-19 vaccine but in the meantime an early article published last week thinks the molecule NAD+ plays an important role in fighting Coronaviruses like SARS and could play a vital role in treating COVID-19. We know that NAD+ levels decrease with age so in this article we ask the question...
‘Could the high levels of NAD in young people be one of the factors in them being largely unaffected by COVID-19?
NAD+ – Like a Superhero version of Vitamin C
Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) is well known as a vital molecule to help release energy in your cells from the food you eat. We also know that it has many health benefits including playing a vital role in messaging through your body, helping to elevate mood and fight depression and signalling when it finds damaged DNA in our cells. It is required for over 500 enzymatic reactions and plays key roles in almost everything the cells in your body does.
NAD+ levels steadily decline with age, resulting in altered metabolism and increased disease susceptibility. Research with restoration of NAD+ levels in old or diseased animals can promote health and extend lifespan.
NAD is the vital courier inside your cells
NAD is one of the most abundant molecules in the body and its in a constant state of ‘busy’ and ‘waiting’. We like to compare it to a bicycle courier that can carry a letter or deliver food like an uber eats. These two roles are similar to how NAD acts as a messenger in the body or can help deliver energy where its needed. These two ‘states’ of carrying something or waiting are why we see NAD+ also written as NADH. The NAD+ is the molecule waiting for its next job and the NADH represents the molecule when its out delivering a message or energy where its needed.
NAD+ Turbocharges Your Own Internal Healthcare System
Your body has a 2 stage approach to potential infections . These are known as the Innate and Adaptive Immune System.
The innate immune system is the first response to infection. It does what it can quickly but its targeted skills are limited. The innate immune system in our body is like an ambulance with first responders on the scene.
The adaptive Immune system is the second wave of defence which has a wide range of methods to fight and treat infections in your body, rather like a large hospital when compared to an ambulance.
In this research paper from 2016 we see that NAD+ is known to boost the effectiveness of both the innate and adaptive immune system. The current Coronavirus pandemic is a caused by SARS-CoV-2. In early studies ( that are not yet peer reviewed) Dr Collin Heer conducted research to show that the Coronavirus has an effect on the gene that makes and regulates NAD+.
Not only is NAD+ vital in fighting off infection, but once infected with COVID-19 he is suggesting that the catastrophic drop in NAD+ levels is caused by the virus. If we think back to our ‘NAD being like a bike courier’ idea this would be like uninstalling the Uber Eats app and sending all the couriers home.
Pirates Don’t Cause Global Warming
Causation and Correlation are two very different things. We know that planet average temperaures are rising steadily and we know that the number of global acts of piracy at sea are decreasing, but that doesnt mean that pirates help keep the planet cool.
We know that there is a lot more research to be done here but it isn’t a huge leap to wonder if young people with naturally high NAD levels are able to fight off the infection because of these high levels and why lower and lower NAD levels in people as they get older may explain why their infection and mortality rate is higher. Its certainly something that got us talking in our Zoom meeting last week.
Given that NAD+ was discovered over 100 years ago it is surprising how much there is to learn but we know this much: NAD+ boosters seem relatively safe and have a remarkable ability to prevent and treat diseases. We cover more about NAD+ supplements here.