The Ultimate Guide to TMG & NMN

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- Updated by Dr. Susan Adeosun, MPH, MD

Table of contents

Is there a way to make NMN even more effective?

What Is Trimethylglycine?

What Are the Health Benefits of TMG?

NAD+ and Aging

The NMN Supplement

How TMG Is Used to Supplement NMN

TMG and NMN To Promote Anti-ageing

Is TMG and NMN Safe for Consumption?

What Is the Recomme nded Dosage for TMG?

What Are the Side Effects of Using TMG?

The Bottom Line

Key Takeaways

  • Recent studies have shown that Trimethylglycine (TMG) may be a supplement that helps make NMN more effective.
  • TMG’s recorded health benefits include high athletic performance, better liver health, and healthy insulin levels.
  • NMN needs methyl groups to function correctly, and TMG helps restore these methyl groups.
  • Methylation is necessary for many body functions, such as cell division, metabolism, epigenetics, and making neurotransmitters.
  • The way NMN is converted into NAM requires methylation, meaning methyl groups can become depleted, meaning that supplementing NMN with TMG is a great way to counter this depletion.

Is there a way to make NMN even more effective?

With new research carried out everyday, we find ourselves closer to being able to increasingly support the issues related to aging. The use of NMN supplement has become more popular as more people begin to see its effect. 

But as with everything good, improvements are continually being made, and adding TMG Supplements to NMN appears to have opened another door into understanding how to reduce the effects of ageing and the likelihood of developing age-related illnesses..

Trimethylglycine (TMG) is an important compound and the body is capable of producing it by itself. Known also as betaine or betaine anhydrous, several studies have been carried out to check for potential health benefits. They include high athletic performance, good liver health, protection against depression, a healthy heart, and a healthy insulin level. 

NMN works by methylation, but this consumes the methyl groups in the body. TMG also helps to replenish these methyl groups used up by NMN.

TMG can be found in certain foods, such as beets. It has also become an ingredient in many gym supplements. It is often added as betaine anhydrous.

Despite its numerous health benefits, TMG can be dangerous when used in high doses. In this article, we will discuss how TMG and NMN supplements promote longevity.

What Is Trimethylglycine? 

TMG is a compound made up of three methyl groups attached to glycine. It is produced by the body and can be found naturally in foods and plants. It is also produced as a supplement to take advantage of the health benefits.

The major importance of TMG is methylation. The process of methylation is essential for the production of DNA. It also promotes fluid balance, which allows for the proper growth of cells.

Apart from these, TMG has also been found to have effects on muscle growth, physical performance, energy level, and power growth. These effects have made TMG widely used for bodybuilding. It also functions closely with choline, folic acid, and vitamin B12.

What Is Methylation?

Methylation is an important biochemical process in the human body. This process involves the transfer of methyl groups from one molecule to another. Methyl groups are CH3 compounds that are made up of one carbon atom and three hydrogen atoms. 

The process of methylation is responsible for many important activities carried out by the body. Some of these are cell division, metabolism, DNA expression (epigenetics), producing cellular energy, forming neurotransmitters, clearing histamine, and producing antioxidants.

Methylation also helps to convert homocysteine into methionine. This helps to reduce the likelihood of heart diseases and damaged blood vessels, which can be caused by high levels of homocysteine.

There is a "methyl pool" that serves as a centre for storing methyl groups. When methyl groups are needed to be transferred, they are drawn from this pool. Methylation is usually not a problem as long as there are enough methyl groups in the pool. However, some people might have issues undergoing methylation, especially as they grow older. 

There are two major reasons why decreased methylation could occur which are:

1. MTHFR Variants

MTHFR (Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase) is a gene with different mutations. These mutations can cause the blood to have high levels of homocysteine and low levels of folate. 

There are two main MTHFR variants, which are heterozygous and homozygous. These variants are found around the world, but it seems that certain people are more affected by some variants than others. Around 40% of the world population has one or both mutations. 

These MTHFR mutations do not mean that you require treatment, nor would you display symptoms of any disease. To increase methylation, you can use methylated B vitamin supplements or any other methyl donor.

2. Epigenetics and Aging

Epigenetics is the expression of DNA. Methylation plays an important role in epigenetics. Not that it changes the DNA sequencing, but it switches the different sequences of your genetic materials as required.

But methylation ability and epigenetics decline as we grow older. The changes in DNA expression are linked to biomarkers related to diseases, and this could contribute to health conditions caused by old age.

What Are the Health Benefits of TMG?

Several health and performance benefits have been linked to TMG. Some of them include:

Improved Heart Health

Studies have shown that TMG could help to decrease the level of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine is an amino acid, and high levels of this compound can increase the probability of you getting heart disease. 

Lower homocysteine levels have been linked to lower risks of strokes and heart diseases. High levels of homocysteine can cause the arteries to get clogged and harden.

Improved Liver Health

The buildup of fat and fatty acids is caused by the symptoms of obesity, alcohol abuse, and diabetes. Although the liver retains some amount of fat as an energy reserve, too much can cause fatty liver disease.

It has been proven that TMG supplements can help the liver break down fatty acids. This reduces the risk of fatty acid accumulation. There have also been some cases of patients with liver damage who recovered after using TMG.

Improved Athletic Performance

It is not uncommon to find athletes using TMG supplements to help them enhance their performance. One study reported that using TMG supplements could help to improve body composition. They could also increase performance in exercises that have to do with endurance and resistance.

Due to the fact that only initial studies have been carried out, the exact mechanisms are unclear. Another study speculates that TMG could reduce tiredness, increase the production of protein, and boost the formation of creatine. Creatine is a compound that provides the muscle cells with energy.

Reduced Resistance to Insulin

Insulin resistance is a condition whereby the body cannot use the hormone insulin to regulate the level of sugar in the blood. Much of the research carried out has discovered that the use of TMG supplements could help with insulin resistance. 

One such study showed that increasing your intake of betaine TMG and choline can reduce resistance to insulin. Another research on mice showed that TMG supplements could potentially be useful in reversing insulin resistance in the liver. This occurs when insulin cannot reduce the production of sugar in the liver.

Improved Mental Health

TMG has been found to improve how certain antidepressant medications work. It has been seen to especially boost the effects of S-adenosyl-methionine (SAMe). SAMe is used to treat depression that is classified as mild to moderate.

People who take both SAMe and TMG are more likely to see greater improvement than those who take SAMe alone. Interestingly, the use of TMG supplements can help to reduce the symptoms of anxiety and depression. These symptoms are usually linked to high levels of homocysteine, which TMG can help to reduce.

NAD+ and Aging

There are many methods by which people tackle ageing. Some settle for temporary, surface-level results like the use of "anti-ageing" creams. But extensive studies have shown that cell ageing can be slowed down or even reversed by replacing the decreasing levels of NAD+ in our cells.

What is NAD+?

NAD+ is a very important coenzyme. It is responsible for creating energy and cell functionality. It is also essential for the functionality of a group of enzymes called sirtuins, or the "longevity genes."

Sirtuins help to fight against ageing by reversing DNA damage. It also helps to prevent inflammation. These are the major causes of age-related sicknesses. 

At the same time, the genes that repair the DNA, PARPS (poly ADP-ribose polymerases), also need the right amount of NAD+ to work effectively.

Our bodies age when the sirtuins and PARPS are unavailable. This also makes us susceptible to different types of age-related illnesses. So, optimal NAD+ levels are required to keep our longevity system in perfect order.

Unfortunately, our NAD+ levels decrease rapidly as we grow older. But if we can increase NAD+ levels, the sirtuin genes would become activated and they could help to reduce the effects of ageing on the body.

Although the research on NAD+ and its associated health benefits is still evolving, the results have been encouraging. One conclusion is that by supplementing with NAD+ intermediates, NAD+ can be restored. This, in turn, will reduce functional defects associated with ageing, including neurodegenerative diseases. Combining the sirtuin activation and the NAD+ immediate supplements can be effective for supporting ones healthspan.

There are several ways in which the levels of NAD+ can be improved in the body. But the most commonly advocated for is NMN (Nicotinamide mononucleotide), which is a precursor to NAD+. Increasing the NMN level in the body can lead to more NAD+ being produced in the cells.

The NMN Supplement 

NMN can give a 240% increase in the NAD+ levels in the body. NMN powder is known to improve the metabolism of an adult human, making it like someone that is ten or twenty years younger! The effects of NMN on humans have been studied, and it can be seen to have several health benefits. These are related to athletic performance, resistance to insulin, and cardiovascular health.

It has been confirmed by several studies that NMN is safe for human use. However, it has been found that NMN could be complemented by taking it along with methylation support. 

How TMG Is Used to Supplement NMN

Methylation is vital for the important functions of the body. But there is no unlimited source of methylation fuel. The "methyl pool" from which the body draws CH3 methyl groups sometimes runs low. However, this can be dealt with by eating healthy and supplementing with B vitamins or methyl donors like TMG.

The power of the NMN to boost NAD+ is already well established. This helps to increase the potential of our bodies to resist ageing. NMN does its job by carrying out certain biochemical activities.

It helps in the creation of NAM (nicotinamide). The process is carried out with methylation so that the NAM created can be methylated into N-methyl nicotinamide. The metabolite is then passed through the natural pathway via urine.

But the process by which NMN is converted to NAM and the passing of the NAM requires methylation. This causes the methyl groups in the body to be used up. Ultimately, supplementing the NMN with TMG can replenish the methyl groups that are being used up.

TMG and NMN To Promote Longevity

NMN has been shown to promote ongevity by effectively enhancing the functions of the sirtuins and PARPS. It helps to repair DNA and control inflammation, thereby preventing sickness caused by ageing. Methylation is also essential for DNA expression and the proper functioning of the body. 

The FDA has approved TMG to be used in lowering homocysteine, thereby reducing the risk of cardiovascular issues. TMG donates methyl groups to the body's "methyl pool" to ensure that methylation can occur when necessary. 

The combination of TMG and NMN is perfect because producing NAD+ by using NMN as a precursor can only be done by the methylation process. But excess NAD+ becomes a byproduct known as NAM, which is then converted to MeNAM by methylation and excreted via the kidneys. The conversion of NAM to MeNAM requires the use of methyl groups. This process causes a decrease in the methyl groups in the body. TMG can help to replace the methyl groups, restoring them to their previous levels.

The use of NMN together with TMG is one of the best ways to activate and maintain the natural processes in our body.

Is TMG and NMN Safe for Consumption?

It has been proven that TMG is safe for use. People who have heart or cholesterol problems should consult their doctors before using it because of the potential side effects. Those having problems with their kidneys should not use them at all.

NMN is also safe for everyone. It can be consumed orally in dosages of 100, 250, and 500 mg. Studies have shown that consuming NMN in oral form does not cause any side effects or changes in body temperature, heart rate, blood pressure, or oxygen saturation.

What Is the Recommended Dosage for TMG?

There is no official recommended dosage for the quantity of TMG that should be consumed. Although it is considered that up to 15 grams of TMG is safe for use per day, It is especially effective when taken in the 500 to 9,000 mg range.

What Are the Side Effects of Using TMG?

The side effects of TMG are commonly linked to digestion. They generally include bloating, indigestion, vomiting, cramps, nausea, and diarrhoea. Some people might experience slight headaches as well. These are usually a result of  dosages not being managed properly. Contact your doctor if any of the symptoms become severe.

The Bottom Line

Taking a TMG supplement to ensure your body has an adequate methyl pool is a precautionary measure that has no disadvantages to it. Adding TMG to your NMN supplements helps you to enjoy the optimal benefits of NMN. This way, your body can effectively carry out the methylation process. It also helps to activate genes that promote longevity, like sirtuins and PARPS.