By Jason Croxford

How a family of proteins and an obscure molecule are changing everything we know about health and aging. 

The Sirtuin Theory of Aging was born from a study on calories. This is part of what makes the theory and subsequent discovery of Protandim® NAD Synergizer™* so interesting, but it’s only part of the story. 

Several decades ago, researchers began to notice a number of health benefits occurring in organisms when calories were restricted. To be clear, caloric restriction is much different than intermittent fasting or merely skipping a meal. Caloric restriction is the process of significantly reducing the number of calories eaten during the day. This can be by as much as 40-60 percent. Think of it as going from eating a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet down to around 700 or 800. 

If you think that sounds miserable, you’re absolutely right. 

But let’s get back to the story. 

When researchers went behind the scenes to look at the physiology – what was happening inside the organisms that were having their calories drastically restricted– there was a litany of health benefits, including: healthy longevity, a healthier vascular system, and the ability to maintain cholesterol levels that are already within the healthy range. It came with a lot of cognitive benefits too. A better mood, the ability to think clearer, and increases in energy. 

Researchers didn’t stop there though. They wanted to understand what was causing these health benefits by getting down to the cellular level and looking closely at the communication pathways and cellular chatter during caloric restriction. 

As they continued to research caloric restriction, researchers identified a family of proteins called sirtuins that were causing the majority of the health benefits. And how did they know? Well, during caloric restriction, there’s a 94% increase in sirtuin activity, and on top of that, when they removed sirtuins from the cell, the health benefits that came with caloric restriction disappeared with them. 

This opened up the scientific floodgates. Researchers looked deeper into what makes sirtuins work. As they did, they discovered there was a particular molecule that had to be present in order for sirtuins to do their thing. It was called NAD. This was surprising. NAD wasn’t new, but scientists regarded it as relatively unimportant molecule that lived within the mitochondria and other parts of the cell. It was responsible for aspects of energy production and metabolism, but that was it, right?


Now there was a direct, undeniable correlation between amazing, health-boosting sirtuins and an obscure molecule, NAD – a direct link between metabolism and a wide range of health benefits. 

So the Holy Grail became “could we manipulate the process and bring about those benefits without having to restrict calories in the process?”

It turns out, you can. 

LifeVantage went to work and created Protandim® NAD Synergizer™ with a specific focus on targeting NAD and NAD-dependent pathways. The ultimate goal being to increase sirtuin activity.* Here’s how. 

In the NAD biosynthetic pathway, there are two key enzymes that are key to producing and recycling NAD. When we went into the laboratory to see if these genes were being upregulated, we discovered that Protandim NAD Synergizer led to a 12 percent increase in NMNAT1 (a central enzyme for NAD synthesis) and a 12 percent increase in NAMPT (a key enzyme in the NAD recycling pathway).* 

But it’s not NAD that we necessarily want. Remember, NAD is just the catalyst. Sirtuin activity is where the magic happens. In the same study, we found that Protandim NAD Synergizer increased sirtuin activity by 46 percent just after three hours. And by 100 percent after 24 hours.* 

By using nutrigenomics to activate the NAD pathway, we’re opening up a wide range of health benefits that come with caloric restriction. The great news (besides better health) is that Protandim NAD Synergizer means you don’t have to be miserable by cutting all those calories in the process. And because sirtuin activity can decrease by nearly 60 percent as we age, this is incredibly important.* 

Here are some of the benefits we’re seeing as we target the NAD pathway: 

  • Support for increased mental focus and concentration* 
  • Support for positive mood and motivation* 
  • A boost in mental and physical energy* 
  • Support for the body’s healthy inflammation response*
  • Maintaining cholesterol levels already within a healthy range*

This is happening because when sirtuins are activated, it triggers a process called autophagy – also known as cellular cleanup. Think of autophagy as a vacuum cleaner that travels through the cell and cleans up all the gunk over time. Autophagy also triggers a healthy inflammation response that leads to even more longevity. 

From metabolism to healthy longevity, the sirtuin theory of aging is opening up a new chapter of nutrigenomics. It’s fascinating. It’s promising. Perhaps most importantly, it’s changing the conversation around how we maintain our health. 

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.