The Relationship Between Dietary Supplements with Nicotinamide Riboside and Health Risks Such as Cancer

The human body requires sufficient nutrients to stay healthy and function to its full capacity. Some people ensure that they receive more nutrients by consuming dietary supplements. They choose vitamins and supplements based on what their body lacks. Multivitamins are also a great option to get all the necessary vitamins. Those health additives are necessary when your daily meal lacks all the nourishment you need. Receiving the proper amount of vitamins and minerals can help boost your immune system and lessen the risk of severe diseases.

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Aside from securing overall health, some dietary supplements can aid people with their weight loss journey. The products market benefits such as speeding up metabolism, absorbing fat or carbohydrates, building muscles, and suppressing appetite. Although beneficial, achieving your weight goal through the natural process is still highly recommended. Dependence on weight loss dietary supplements poses underlying health threats. You might have shed some weight, but your body will show side effects in the long run. Beware of the contents of the dietary supplement you take, specifically those with nicotinamide riboside.

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The weight loss aid is known for maintaining cardiovascular, digestive, and neurological health. Nicotinamide riboside is also effective due to its ability to convert food into energy, repair damaged DNA, and fix the body’s circadian rhythm. Although it has given people positive results, a recent study discovered that nicotinamide riboside can develop diseases and increase cancer risks. The vitamin B3 makes a person more prone to breast cancer, especially when taken at high levels. It also causes brain metastasis — a condition where cancer has already reached the brain.

The investigation was conducted by researchers from the University of Missouri. Associate professor of chemistry Elena Goun led the team, and her father inspired the research. The professor’s 59-year-old father had died from cancer. The disease had already spread over his body three months after getting diagnosed with colon cancer. The study’s findings have revealed that nicotinamide riboside is linked to cancer metabolism. This is due to the fact that NR heightens cellular energy levels, which cancer cells utilize to spread throughout the human body.

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“Some people take them [vitamins and supplements] because they automatically assume that vitamins and supplements only have positive health benefits, but very little is known about how they actually work,” Professor Goun said. “Because of this lack of knowledge, we were inspired to study the basic questions surrounding how vitamins and supplements work in the body,” she added. People must understand and be aware of how severe the situation is once cancer reaches the central nervous system. Since there are no available treatments for such conditions, the researchers aim to provide awareness and proof that NR in dietary supplements is a health threat.

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“While NR is already being widely used in people and is being investigated in so many ongoing clinical trials for additional applications, much of how NR works is a black box—it’s not understood,” Goun said. “So that inspired us to come up with this novel imaging technique based on ultrasensitive bioluminescent imaging that allows quantification of NR levels in real time in a non-invasive manner. The presence of NR is shown with light, and the brighter the light is, the more NR is present,” she explained.

The information from the study highlights the significance of analyzing the side effects of supplements like NR before people with health issues use it. Professor Goun stated, “Not all cancers are the same in every person, especially from the standpoint of metabolic signatures,” Goun said. “Often times cancers can even change their metabolism before or after chemotherapy.” Furthermore, she plans on finding additional data that could help with the effectiveness of chemotherapy, and she looks forward to producing inhibitors that could aid in cancer treatments.

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