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The coenzyme NAD: A natural protein that could be a cure for addiction

The coenzyme NAD: A natural protein that could be a cure for addiction

For people recovering from drug addiction, one of the first steps can be the hardest: detoxification. Drug abuse fundamentally alters the structures and chemical makeup of the brain. When the drug is removed from the system, the brain has trouble adjusting. Drug withdrawal can cause symptoms such as sweating, fever, hallucinations and even seizures. The severity of these withdrawal symptoms can prevent a person from maintaining sobriety. It can even keep the person from quitting drug use in the first place.

The coenzyme NAD, sometimes referred to as “biological rocket fuel,” might just be the key to reducing these withdrawal symptoms. It might even reduce drug cravings in the first place. Can this simple, natural protein really be the cure for addiction?

What is NAD?

NAD stands for nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, an activated form of vitamin B3. NAD is naturally present within every cell in the human body. It regulates gene expression and mediates calcium levels. NAD is also a participant in a number of redox reactions – in other words, it reacts with oxygen in the body.

Because of these reactions, NAD is a powerful anti-oxidant and can reduce populations of harmful free radicals, protecting the body from aging and diseases caused by oxidative damage such as cancer. NAD is also an essential component of the citric acid cycle (or Krebs cycle), a cellular process that produces energy for literally every cell and organ in the body.

How can IV NAD therapy benefit drug addicts?

Long-term drug abuse alters the cellular makeup of the brain. When the recovering addict stops taking the drug, the brain needs to relearn how to function on its own. Part of this relearning includes rebuilding lost neurotransmitters and reforming lost connections.  Until these neural changes are complete and the brain is healed, the recovering addict continues to experience withdrawal symptoms and cravings.

Because NAD is responsible for energy production, increasing the availability of NAD increases cellular energy. Increased energy means that the brain can more quickly rebuild its neurotransmitter population and fix its connections. This flood of energy and neurotransmitters brings the brain back to a more balanced state.

Infusions of NAD result in an increased sense of well-being, clearer cognition and reduced drug withdrawal symptoms.

What are the advantages of NAD over other detox methods?

Compared to other detoxification methods, NAD works very quickly. Both withdrawal symptoms and physical cravings are significantly reduced within three or four days. This can be especially inspiring during the beginning phases of drug cessation. Other detox methods take a while before they start working – with NAD infusions, recovering drug addicts are provided with near-immediate relief, encouraging them to continue pursuing sobriety.

NAD is also completely natural and non-addictive, guaranteeing that the recovering addict won’t trade one addiction for another.

The controversy

Although NAD therapy has been available since the 1960s, it is still considered a nontraditional method for treating drug and alcohol abuse. No funded research confirming NAD therapy as a valid way to treat addiction currently exists. Before NAD therapy can become a common treatment plan, peer-reviewed scientific research will need to delve into its long-term (and short-term) effects on the human brain.

Nevertheless, it does seem to work, if only anecdotally. Patients who receive NAD therapy tend to describe the experience as making them feel more alive and increasing their energy. Drug addicts who receive NAD have reported decreased withdrawal symptoms and a diminished desire to use. With its absence of side effects and largely positive reviews, it might not hurt to give NAD therapy a try.

Sovereign Health Group is one of the few facilities that treats patients with the coenzyme NAD. Sovereign’s detox treatment program, Naturally Assisted Detox, involves both NAD infusions and neurotransmitter restoration therapy. Naturally Assisted Detox is, coincidentally, also abbreviated as NAD. For further questions, please contact 866-524-5504.

Written by Courtney Lopresti, Sovereign Health Group writer