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Fountain of youth

November 3, 2016

“it’s better to burn out than to fade away”

(From Neil Young’s My My, Hey Hey – and known for being quoted by Kurt Cobain in his suicide note)

I remember my teenage years well. I also remember voicing the opinion above, along with other things along the lines of “life ends at 30”.

I’m 42, almost to the day. I have no intention whatsoever of fading away. I consider myself a transhumanist, and I spent some time being a board member of the Swedish subcategory of Humanity+. I subscribe to the idea of aging being just another disease we haven’t cured yet, and I eagerly follow the current state of research on the subject.

One development in particular, popularised by the company Elysium, is a combination of substances that counteracts one of the possible sources of a lot of age related problems, the declining quality of communication between our cell nucleus and the mitochondria that powers it. The list of things this affects (effects, even) is quite long – and for quite some time now there have been promising tests on yeasts and mice on how to counteract this decline, in effect boosting the levels back to where they were when we were younger.

A few weeks ago the results of the first clinical human tests were published, and I am since five days on the same formula as Elysium sells under the brand Elysium Basis. It consists of 250mg of Nicotinamide Riboside, taken together with 50mg of Pterostilbene, once a day.


… and I’m quite stunned, at the moment. I’ve carefully avoided reading too much about what effects I should experience, instead going at it with the outset of trying to see what my general experience of a month’s usage would feel like compared with before. I know all too well how dangerous expectations (and the placebo effect) can be when trying to evaluate something like this.

However, even after just a few days one effect stands out so clearly that I have no doubts whatsoever as to its existence. My general energy levels are up, way up. This applies to everything from feeling more awake directly in the morning, to walking at a very brisk pace to the bus station without feeling the slightest need to increase my rate of breathing, to working through the day and yet being fully energetic when coming home to play with my children in the evening. This does not in any way feel artificial (like you would get from Modafinil, for example), I just feel … more capable.

(Another possible effect, although I only noticed it a day ago, is that my skin feels … smoother, softer. Like after having used a facial cream after shaving. I’ll have to get back on how certain I am of this later)

So why am I taking these supplements? Is this just a case of death anxiety?

Well, I don’t think so. I do however know both from my immediate family members’ medical history, as well as from DNA testing, that I would be wise to take care of a few things that otherwise could become issues. I would consider right about now to be a suitable point in time to start making sure that I will keep my health into my 50’s, 60’s,…, 100’s.

Increased cardiovascular health, better neuro protection and lowered blood sugar levels is what I’m aiming for. Live long and prosper. One (two) pills a day.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. Adam Kłobukowski permalink
    November 4, 2016 7:13

    One trial is not enough. Please see:

    • November 4, 2016 10:01

      @Adam That depends on what information you want from the trial :) There was some uncertainty whether NR indeed raised NAD levels in humans (dose responsive), which the trial did answer. This was not a trial to measure the effects of prolonged use – those we only have information from yeast/mice and personal anecdotes by users so far.

      • Adam Kłobukowski permalink
        November 4, 2016 17:41

        Information from trial, is the overall health results, not one single data point. There is no proof that rising NAD levels in humans have positive effect, and these things have often counter intuitive effects (like antioxidants, eating more then there is in ordinary food is actually harmful).

  2. November 4, 2016 17:48

    @adam I don’t follow. The trial answered the exact point I wrote. No one has said it covered anything else. Or as I wrote: “This was not a trial to measure the effects of prolonged use – those we only have information from yeast/mice and personal anecdotes by users so far.”

  3. November 14, 2016 17:35

    Fler reflektioner nu när det gått en tid? Vart beställde du det ifrån?

    • November 14, 2016 18:23

      Senaste veckan har jag varit i en helt annan tidszon (Tokyo) och med ett väldigt hektiskt arbetsschema, så just den är inte representativ (plus jetlageffekter). Däremot anser jag fortfarande att skillnaden i hy och energitillgång är en reell och märkbar effekt. Tänkte återkomma när jag använt det i en månad och försöka göra en ny uppskattning.

      Jag beställde från


  1. Fountain of Youth – the two month update | it's in my head

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