Apigenin Increases NAD Levels; Prolongs Lifespan; and is Protective Against Breast Cancer, Colon Cancer and Prostate Cancer

by Nils Osmar. March 17, 2022

Apigenin’s been in the news recently in the anti-aging community. We’ve known for a few years that it increases NAD levels by reducing the activity of the enzyme CD38 in the body, facilitating DNA repair.

A recent study also showed that the inhibition of CD38 (which can be accomplished using apigenin and some other compounds) increases the lifespan significantly in male mice – a 17% increase compared to control animals. This separate study found a lifespan increase in worms given apigenin.

Both lab studies and epidemiological studies also suggest that apigenin has anti-cancer benefits. In lab studies, it’s also been shown to reduce the proliferation or increase apoptosis (cell death) in numerous cancer cell lines. In population studies, consumption of food high in apigenin has been shown to correlate with lower cancer rates in humans, including breast cancer. It also has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer properties.

I’m not suggesting that anyone use apigenin as a primary or secondary anti-cancer treatment (Nothing on this website is intended as, or should be taken as, medical advice.) I can say though, speaking only for myself, that its anti-aging, life-extending, and anticancer properties are among the reasons I take it as a supplement, and that I also eat foods high in apigenin such as parsley and celery and drink chamomile tea.

I also eat a lot of the herb rosemary, which is rich in apigenin and has also been found to have anti-cancer benefits, Several studies suggest that rosemary extract appears to inhibit tumor growth by preventing cancerous cells from replicating. Rosemary is also a key staple in the diet in the Mediterranean village Acciaroli, a seaside town in Italy which has the highest percentage of centenarians anywhere in the world – more than ten times higher than the rate of people living to 100 and 110 than exits in the other so-called Blue Zones.

Apigenin Promotes Restful Sleep

I used to take apigenin along with NMN and NR (two NAD precursors) in the mornings, but found that the apigenin made me a little sleepy. So I’m currently taking it late in the day. (I sometimes eat a little parsley in the morning around the time I take NMN).

Foods (including herbs) high in apigenin likely contain other beneficial compounds not found in the supplements, so to me it makes sense to both take the very concentrated doses available in supplements and eat foods rich in a variety of other veneficial phytonutrients. So I eat parsley, season my foods with parsleyt and rosemary, and drink chamomile tea.

From a recent study:

Epidemiologic and case-control studies have suggested apigenin reduces the risk of certain cancers…. Apigenin has been shown to possess anti-proliferative effects on breast cancer cell lines…

Studies demonstrate that apigenin retain potent therapeutic properties alone and/or increases the efficacy of several chemotherapeutic drugs in combination on a variety of human cancers.

Apigenin’s anticancer effects could also be due to its differential effects in causing minimal toxicity to normal cells with delayed plasma clearance and slow decomposition in liver increasing the systemic bioavailability in pharmacokinetic studies.

Here we discuss the anticancer role of apigenin highlighting its potential activity as a chemopreventive and therapeutic agent… Brusselmans et al. [60] demonstrated that plant flavonoids induce apoptosis in prostate and breast carcinoma cells due to their ability to inhibit fatty acid synthase, an enzyme that catalyzes long chain fatty acid synthesis and is over-expressed in several cancer cells.

Apigenin Supplements

Re: supplements, there are several brands to choose from. Some are just capsules full of dried parsley. Others have concentrated apigenin.

I’m currently taking DoNotAge’s product. I’ve found that taking 500 mg of DNA’s apigenin at bedtime (for me) promotes deep, restful sleep with interesting dreams. I’m not sure why, but I didn’t experience this effect with the brands I used to take (Double Wood and Swanson). More information


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