Health Benefits of Berberine
by Nils Osmar. January 14, 2022
In my opinion, BERBERINE is one of most important anti-aging compounds. It:
- protects against cancer
- lowers LDL and total cholesterol
- activates the sirtuin (anti-aging) genes
- switches on AMPK and autophagy
- extends lifespan in lab animals
Berberine is a natural plant-based compound that has powerful anti-aging effects. Interestingly, it’s also one of the most affordable supplements.
- It mimics many of the health and longevity benefits of metformin. (David Sinclair has called it “the poor man’s metformin”)
- Like several other natural compounds, it’s a sirtuin gene activator. https://bpspubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/…/10…/bph.14079
- When taken together with resveratrol, berberine has been shown in mouse studies to lower total cholesterol, triglyceride, and LDL cholesterol levels https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30563192/
- It’s been reported to have anticancer and anti-inflammatory effects. Some studies have shown that it inhibits the growth of colon cancer (the second leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide). https://www.thelancet.com/…/PIIS2468-1253…/fulltext….
- Like metformin, it lowers insulin and blood glucose levels, and activates AMPK (the longevity pathway) and upregulates autophagy https://translational-medicine.biomedcentral.com/…/s129…
- It also reduces the generation of senescent cells.
- Compounds that switch on AMPK also usually switch off mTOR. This is good; we don’t want mTOR activated full time because by directing our energy reserves into growth pathways, it could in theory shorten the lifespan. But mTOR also helps us build muscle (helping prevent sarcopenia) and supports immune function. So we do want it activated for a while now and then.
- If you do resistance training and are trying to build muscle, I would not recommend taking berberine around the time you’re exercising. For this reason, I take it along with NMN and olive oil on my non-exercising days.
- I’m currently taking 500 mg of berberine (sometimes 1,000 mg) along with NMN and resveratrol and a little fat or oil to make sure the resveratrol is absorbed, on my “AMPK activation” days (the days when I’m not doing weight training). (I like to activate mTOR on my weight training days and activate AMPK on the other days.) (I was taking metformin at the same time for a while, but concluded that this was overkill.)
- I also like taking milk thistle along with berberine. Milk thistle contains silymarin, which helps berberine be better absorbed.
- My current source for NMN, resveratrol, berberine, and several other supplements is Donotage.
- P.S. As with every plant compounds, berberine has some side effects. They’re rare, and in my opinion the pluses far outweigh the minuses. But I’d encourage everyone to research and learn about them. Just doing a search for “Berberine benefits and side effects” will give a balanced picture.