Elysium Basis took the world by storm in 2015. And it seems like everyone was talking about this supplement in 2016, when I wrote my first review of the product. Since that time, science has continued to progress. Researchers have published new studies. And with new knowledge comes an opportunity to reassess.
In my first review, I explained that Elysium Basis may not be what you think it is. Smart marketing cultivated a general impression that Elysium itself had developed and exclusively distributed a novel anti-aging nutrient, Nicotinamide Riboside, with exceptional potential to promote metabolic repair and optimization, and thereby support cellular health and longevity. But the truth is that Elysium was one of many vendors who purchased Nicotinamide Riboside from Chromadex, and the science behind Nicotinamide Riboside was promising but still preliminary.
Elysium and Chromadex Lawsuits
Since that time, Elysium and Chromadex had a falling out. Here, to the best of my understanding, is the short version of the story.
Elysium recruited some executives from Chromadex, accused Chromadex of violating terms of their contract, and refused to pay Chromadex for a large shipment of Nicotinamide Riboside. Consequently, Chromadex stopped supplying Elysium, who then switched to an unknown source of Nicotinamide Riboside to continue manufacturing Basis.
Elysium has since tried and failed to challenge the legality of a Dartmouth patent, licensed to Chromadex, which describes what may be at present the only scalable method for manufacturing Nicotinamide Riboside. And Chromadex is now suing Elysium for patent infringement, in addition to a flurry of other lawsuits going back and forth between the two parties in various states.
New Studies of Nicotinamide Riboside on Humans
In 2016, there wasn't much evidence from human studies to provide formal support for the hope that Nicotinamide Riboside would prove to be an effective geroprotector. There was only one study on one human. But there were plans for larger studies.
In 2017, researchers published a study of 8 persons who supplemented with Nicotinamide Riboside. Participants used 250 to 1000 mg daily for 9 days. The study found that supplementation doubled NAD+ levels in blood samples.
Also in 2017, Elysium published a study of 120 persons who supplemented with Basis. For the study, they used a formulation of Basis that contained Nicotinamide Riboside from Chromadex, before changing suppliers. Participants used 250 or 500 mg of Nicotinamide Riboside and 50 or 100 mg Pterostilbene daily for 8 weeks. And, like the other 2017 study, this study found that supplementation dose-dependently increased NAD+ levels up to 90% in blood samples.
These research results are good news! Of course there's more work to be done. It's one thing to measure an increase of a chemical in blood samples. It's another thing to confirm that the increase actually results in expected health benefits for humans. But we'll see more studies that aim to do that. And I'm optimistic about the results.
In the meantime, Nicotinamide Riboside is still not the most well-researched or demonstrably-effective geroprotector. Judging from the available science, there are others that are probably more worthy of your consideration. So, before you invest in Nicotinamide Riboside, check out my list of top tier geroprotectors. It includes 22 nutrients that have demonstrated a notable magnitude of effect on one or more parameters of healthy aging in multiple peer-reviewed placebo-controlled clinical studies on humans.
Pterostilbene May Increase LDL Cholesterol
In addition to Nicotinamide Riboside, Elysium Basis contains Pterostilbene. It's a nutrient similar to Resveratrol, which is touted for general purpose geroprotection. And some researchers believe Pterostilbene may be more bioavailable than Resveratrol.
However, Pterostilbene is less well studied than Resveratrol. And it may present a downside that Resveratrol does not. That downside is the potential to increase LDL cholesterol -- the "bad" cholesterol.
In my first review of Elysium Basis, I mentioned a 2014 human study of Pterostilbene, which resulted in small positive effects on blood pressure but also small negative effects on LDL cholesterol. Unfortunately, a second study has now confirmed the negative effects of Pterostilbene on LDL cholesterol.
That second study happens to be the same study that Elysium published to demonstrate the benefits of Nicotinamide Riboside. Again, the negative effects were small. And, as indicated in the first study, it may be possible to counteract them with concurrent supplementation of grape seed extract. However, the effects were significant enough that Chromadex decided to stop supplying Pterostilbene to its customers.
Although my interest in Nicotinamide Riboside is continuing to grow, Elysium Basis still isn't the best investment of your supplement budget. It doesn't include the most well-researched geroprotectors. It includes Pterostilbene, which may increase LDL cholesterol. And it includes Nicotinamide Riboside from an unknown supplier at a price that competitors easily beat.
In contrast, Thrivous has brought to market several premium quality supplements that provide the most well-researched geroprotectors at value prices. And we publish documentation to support both the science and the quality, with transparent disclosure of our suppliers and quality assurance test results. You can find this information, prominently displayed for download, on each product webpage. Check out Vitality Geroprotector for metabolic, cellular, and genetic support; Tenacity Arthroprotector for joint and bone support; Alpha Neuroprotector for brain and nerve support; and Omega Cardioprotector for heart and circulation support.