NADH stands for "nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) + hydrogen (H)." This chemical occurs naturally in the body and plays a role in the chemical process that generates energy. People use NADH supplements as medicine.

NADH is used for improving mental clarity, alertness, concentration, and memory; as well as for treating Alzheimer’s disease. Because of its role in energy production, NADH is also used for improving athletic endurance and treating chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).

Some people use NADH for treating high blood pressure, high cholesterol, jet lag, depression, and Parkinson’s disease; boosting the immune system; opposing alcohol’s effects on the liver and the hormone testosterone; reducing signs of aging; and protecting against the side effects of an AIDS drug called zidovudine (AZT).

Healthcare providers sometimes give NADH by intramuscular (IM) or intravenous (IV) injection for Parkinson's disease and depression.

What is NADH ?
NADH, is the abbreviation for nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide and is also known as Coenzyme 1(Co e1). A growing body of scientific research and physicians’ experience shows that it has an important effect to keep you healthy and energetic.

NADH is a naturally‐occurring and vital compound found in all living cells of plants, animals, and humans. It is essential for adequate energy, and supplementation can improve energy levels. The human body carries on many important functions or activities at the same time. All of these activities require cellular energy production.

NADH, through a series of reactions with acetyl and oxygen, is able to produce energy. This energy is in the form of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). Therefore, a good supply of NADH optimizes energy production in the body.

Deficiency Symptoms:
A deficiency of NADH will result in an energy deficit at the cellular level, which causes symptoms of fatigue. When the body is deficient in NADH, it is kind of like a car that has run out of gasoline. The more NADH a cell has available, the more energy it can produce. Unfortunately, the production of NADH in our bodies declines as we age, and so does the production of NADH-dependent enzymes, particularly those enzymes involved with energy production.

Benefits / uses:
NADH has numerous roles in metabolism. It helps enzymes in their work throughout the body, plays a role in energy production, and helps with the production of dopamine, a neurotransmitter. In one study, NADH was found to significantly improve mental function in people who were suffering from jet lag. Other preliminary studies show some beneficial factors of NADH for Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's, depression, and chronic fatigue syndrome.
arw For fatigue and jet lag
arw For fibromyalgia
arw For chronic fatigue syndrome
arw For depression
arw For sports performance
arw For possible benefits to Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease

People who have anxiety should start at lower dosages and work up slowly. It usually takes a period of time to see results, but can differ with each person.

Possible Side effects / Precautions / Possible Interactions:
NADH seems safe for most people when used appropriately and short-term, up to 12 weeks. Most people do not experience any side effects when taking the recommended amount each day, which is 10 mg.

Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of NADH during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Research studies / References

Birkmayer JG, Vrecko C, Volc D, Birkmayer W. Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH)— a new therapeutic approach to Parkinson’s disease. Comparison of oral and parenteral application. Acta Neurol Scand Supp 1993;146:32–5. Birkmayer JGD, Birkmayer W. The coenzyme nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) as biological antidepressive agent: experience with 205 patients. New Trends Clin Neuropharmacol 1991;5:19–25.
arw Kuhn W, Muller T, Winkel R, et al. Parenteral application of NADH in Parkinson’s disease: clinical improvement partially due to stimulation of endogenous levodopa biosynthesis. J Neural Transm 1996;103:1187–93.
arw Birkmayer W, Birkmayer JGD, Vrecko K, et al. The clinical benefit of NADH as stimulator of endogenous L-Dopa biosynthesis in Parkinsonian patients. In: Streifler MB, Korczyn AD, Melamed E, et al. (eds). Advances in Neurology, vol. 53 (Parkinsons Disease: Anatomy, Pathology, and Therapy). New York: Raven Press, 1990, 545–9.
arw Dizdar N, Kagedal B, Lindvall B. Treatment of Parkinson’s disease with NADH. Acta Neurol Scand 1994;90:345–7.
arw Birkmayer JG. Coenzyme nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide: new therapeutic approach for improving dementia of the Alzheimer type. Ann Clin Lab Sci 1996;26:1–9.
arw Forsyth LM, MacDowell-Carnciro AL, Birkmayer GD, et al. The use of NADH as a new therapeutic approach in chronic fatigue syndrome. Presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, 1998.