NAD+ and Mental Health: Exploring the Mind and Body Connection

Vionna Chua

3/17/20243 min read

don't give up. You are not alone, you matter signage on metal fence
don't give up. You are not alone, you matter signage on metal fence

Mental health is a complex and multifaceted aspect of our overall well-being. It encompasses our emotional, psychological, and social well-being, and affects how we think, feel, and act. While there are various factors that contribute to mental health, recent research has highlighted the role of NAD+ in promoting mental well-being and its potential impact on mental health disorders.

The Role of NAD+ in Mental Health

NAD+ (Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide) is a coenzyme found in every cell of our body. It plays a crucial role in various biological processes, including energy production, DNA repair, and cell signaling. In recent years, scientists have discovered that NAD+ also plays a vital role in maintaining brain health and function.

One of the key functions of NAD+ in the brain is its involvement in the production of ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate), which is the primary source of energy for our cells. Adequate levels of NAD+ are essential for optimal brain function and neurotransmitter production, which are critical for maintaining mental health.

Furthermore, NAD+ is involved in DNA repair mechanisms, which help protect our brain cells from damage caused by oxidative stress and inflammation. Research suggests that NAD+ may help reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, which are often associated with mental health issues.

NAD+ and Neurotransmitter Balance

Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers that transmit signals between nerve cells in the brain. Imbalances in neurotransmitter levels can lead to various mental health disorders, such as depression, anxiety, and mood disorders. NAD+ plays a crucial role in maintaining the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain.

Research has shown that NAD+ is involved in the synthesis and metabolism of neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. These neurotransmitters play a vital role in regulating mood, emotions, and cognitive function. By supporting the production and metabolism of neurotransmitters, NAD+ helps maintain a healthy balance and may contribute to improved mental well-being.

NAD+ and Mental Health Disorders

Given the role of NAD+ in brain function and neurotransmitter balance, researchers have been exploring its potential therapeutic benefits for various mental health disorders. Preliminary studies have shown promising results in using NAD+ as a treatment for conditions such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

One study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry found that intravenous NAD+ therapy significantly reduced symptoms of depression and anxiety in patients who had not responded well to traditional antidepressant medications. Another study published in the Journal of Addiction Medicine suggested that NAD+ therapy may help reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms in individuals with substance use disorders.

While more research is needed to fully understand the mechanisms and effectiveness of NAD+ therapy for mental health disorders, these preliminary findings provide hope for alternative and complementary treatment options.

Boosting NAD+ Levels

As we age, our NAD+ levels naturally decline, which may contribute to age-related cognitive decline and mental health issues. However, there are ways to boost NAD+ levels and support mental well-being.

One approach is through lifestyle interventions. Regular exercise, a healthy diet rich in nutrients, and adequate sleep have been shown to support NAD+ production and overall brain health. Stress reduction techniques, such as meditation and mindfulness, may also help maintain optimal NAD+ levels.

Supplementation with NAD+ precursors, such as nicotinamide riboside (NR) and nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN), has also gained attention as a means to increase NAD+ levels. These precursors are readily available as dietary supplements and may provide a convenient way to support mental well-being.


The emerging research on NAD+ and its role in mental health highlights the intricate connection between our mind and body. NAD+ plays a vital role in maintaining brain function, neurotransmitter balance, and protecting against neurodegenerative diseases. While more research is needed, the potential therapeutic benefits of NAD+ for mental health disorders offer hope for alternative treatment options. By adopting healthy lifestyle practices and considering NAD+ supplementation, individuals may be able to support their mental well-being and enhance their overall quality of life.