Spermidine has become a significant player in the biohacking space over the last few years.
Maybe you’ve heard Spermidine mentioned in the latest anti-aging research or touted by your favorite health influencer, and now you want it! The question is, where do you get it?
While not on the mainstream level of other supplements, spermidine products are pretty easy to find.
In my opinion, two companies are selling spermidine that are heads and shoulders above the rest: Spermidine Life and Primeadine (Oxford Health).
The following article highlights the things you must know about spermidine before using it, along with my thoughts and critiques on the two spermidine sources mentioned above.
What Is Spermidine?
Spermidine is a polyamine compound with many important metabolic functions in our bodies. It was first isolated from semen (hence the name), but spermidine is found in many different organisms, from bacteria to humans.
Recent epidemiological data suggests declining spermidine levels are tied to rises in age-related deterioration.1Frank Madeo, Maria A. Bauer, Didac Carmona-Gutierrez, and Guido Kroemer, Spermidine: a physiological autophagy inducer acting as an anti-aging vitamin in humans? Autophagy. 2019
This is most likely due to the many health-maintaining tasks spermidine is responsible for in the body.
Such tasks include cell growth and proliferation, tissue regeneration, DNA and RNA stabilization, enzymatic modulation, and regulation of translation.
It also exhibits anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, enhances mitochondrial metabolic function and respiration, promotes chaperone activity and improves proteostasis.2S Bardócz , T J Duguid, D S Brown, G Grant, A Pusztai, A White, A Ralph, The importance of dietary polyamines in cell regeneration and growth Br J Nutr. 19953Kazuei Igarashi , Keiko Kashiwagi, Modulation of cellular function by polyamines Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 20104Anthony E Pegg, Functions of Polyamines in Mammals J Biol Chem. 2016
Besides the important effects it has on longevity in mammals, spermidine also helps to regulate growth in plants.
Why Do You Need To Supplement With Spermidine?
Spermidine levels decrease as you age which make it necessary to get more of it as time goes on.
It is found naturally in many foods like soybeans, wheat germ, and nato.
Unfortunately, most people don’t eat enough of these foods, nor the overwhelming quantity you would need for a noticeable spermidine benefit.
This makes supplementation necessary since the amount present in food, even in the highest spermidine foods, is not enough to replenish what is lost due to age.
Not to mention many of the foods that spermidine is high in are foods that many people can’t eat due to food sensitivities, allergies, or just plain flavor profile. (I’m looking at you nato!)
Getting consistent high levels of spermidine like that from a supplement is the only tried and true way to keep your levels high and autophagy cranking!
Spermidine Supplement Benefits
Spermidine has been shown to have many health-promoting benefits as demonstrated in the literature.
Below are some examples of documented spermidine benefits.
Spermidine and Longevity
Longevity is spermidine’s main benefit.
While we know that a proper diet and lifestyle can keep you healthy and ultimately help you live longer, spermidine has a direct action on your cells’ ability to increase specific longevity-promoting pathways like autophagy.
As a result taking spermidine can help protect you from various diseases that are a result of accelerated aging like heart disease, cancer, and neurodegeneration.5Fei Yue , Wenjiao Li , Jing Zou , Xianhan Jiang , Guibin Xu, Hai Huang , Leyuan Liu, Spermidine Prolongs Lifespan and Prevents Liver Fibrosis and Hepatocellular Carcinoma by Activating MAP1S-Mediated Autophagy Cancer Res. 20176Jingjing Fan , Ziyuan Feng , Ning Chen, Spermidine as a target for cancer therapy Pharmacol Res. 20207Frank Madeo , Tobias Eisenberg, Federico Pietrocola , Guido Kroemer , Spermidine in health and disease Science. 2018
One of spermidine’s most important roles is autophagy. Autophagy is the process by which our cells clean up and recycle damaged or old proteins and organelles.
It’s been shown that spermidine can activate autophagy in many different tissues, including the liver, brain, muscle, and adipose tissue.8Fei Yue 1, Wenjiao Li , Jing Zou , Xianhan Jiang, Guibin Xu , Hai Huang, Leyuan Liu , Spermidine Prolongs Lifespan and Prevents Liver Fibrosis and Hepatocellular Carcinoma by Activating MAP1S-Mediated Autophagy Cancer Res. 2017
If proper autophagy is not activated, these old, damaged cells called senescent cells accumulate and create excess inflammation, which leads to accelerated aging and the diseases associated with aging.9Frank Madeo, Maria A. Bauer, Didac Carmona-Gutierrez, and Guido Kroemer, Spermidine: a physiological autophagy inducer acting as an anti-aging vitamin in humans? Autophagy. 2019
Spermidine and Weight Loss
Spermidine has also been shown to have a beneficial effect on obesity.10Yanee Choksomngam , Sintip Pattanakuhar , Nipon Chattipakorn, Siriporn C Chattipakorn, The metabolic role of spermidine in obesity: Evidence from cells to community Obes Res Clin Pract. Jul-Aug 2021
Adipose tissue (fat) is an organ that plays a major role in metabolism, immunity, and inflammation. It’s now well known that adipose tissue dysfunction is a key player in the development of metabolic syndrome and obesity.
Spermidine has been shown to increase autophagy in adipose tissue, improve insulin sensitivity, and reduce inflammation.11Bruno Ramos-Molina , Maria Isabel Queipo-Ortuño, Ana Lambertos , Francisco J Tinahones, Rafael Peñafiel, Dietary and Gut Microbiota Polyamines in Obesity- and Age-Related Diseases Front Nutr. 2019
All of these effects lead to a reduction in body weight and fat mass.
Spermidine and Cognition
Spermidine can have a major impact on cognitive function.
It’s been shown to reduce the effects of neurodegenerative diseases by inhibiting a major neuronal enzyme called acetylcholinesterase, which is responsible for breaking down an important learning and memory neurotransmitter called acetylcholine.12Miranka Wirth, Claudia Schwarz, Gloria Benson, Nora Horn, Ralph Buchert, Catharina Lange, Theresa Köbe, Stefan Hetzer, Marta Maglione, Eva Michael, Stefanie Märschenz, Knut Mai, Ute Kopp, Dietmar Schmitz, Ulrike Grittner, Stephan J. Sigrist, Slaven Stekovic, Frank Madeo & Agnes Flöel, Effects of spermidine supplementation on cognition and biomarkers in older adults with subjective cognitive decline (SmartAge)—study protocol for a randomized controlled trial Alzheimer’s Research & Therapy. 2019
Acetylcholine is critical in our cognitive processes, so spermidine’s inhibition of acetylcholinesterase can lead to improved learning and memory.13Monu Yadav , Milind Parle , Deepak Kumar Jindal , Nidhi Sharma, Potential effect of spermidine on GABA, dopamine, acetylcholinesterase, oxidative stress and proinflammatory cytokines to diminish ketamine-induced psychotic symptoms in rats Biomed Pharmacother. 2018
Spermidine and Cardiovascular Health
Several studies demonstrate spermidine’s heart-healthy benefits.
These studies show spermidine’s ability to reduce coronary artery disease, stroke, heart failure, and death due to vascular disease.14Christin Stegemann , Raimund Pechlaner, Peter Willeit, Sarah R Langley, Massimo Mangino, Ursula Mayr, Cristina Menni, Alireza Moayyeri, Peter Santer, Gregor Rungger, Tim D Spector, Johann Willeit, Stefan Kiechl, Manuel Mayr, Lipidomics profiling and risk of cardiovascular disease in the prospective population-based Bruneck study Circulation. 2014
Evidence also shows drops in blood pressure with increased spermidine supplementation.
The mechanism for this is the increased arginine bioavailability from spermidine that enhances nitric oxide, a potent vasodilator.15Tobias Eisenberg et al, Cardioprotection and lifespan extension by the natural polyamine spermidine Nat Med. 2016
Spermidine Supplement Reviews
If you look for spermidine supplements on Amazon you will be pleasantly surprised by the amount of companies selling a spermidine supplement.
At the same time I’m a big promoter of NOT buying supplements on Amazon. Dietary supplements are notorious for being the most corruptable products sold on Amazon with a high likelihood of receiving a counterfit product.16FDA, FDA Warns Consumers to Avoid Certain Male Enhancement and Weight Loss Products Sold Through Amazon, eBay and Other Retailers Due to Hidden, Potentially Dangerous Drug Ingredients FDA.2020
There are many reasons for this which I cover in my post all about buying supplements on Amazon.
Many of these companies also sell many other supplements in addition to spermidine.
This means they are manufactured at scale and that typically requires shortcuts to be taken.
These shortcuts involve using harmful additives, preservatives, and excipients that denature the final product and diminish its effectiveness.
My top 2 spermidine choices, Primeadine and Spermidine Life, exclusively manufacture spermidine which is integral to their high efficacy.
Spermidine Supplement Dosage
Most spermidine supplements recommend 800-900mg of spermidine-rich wheat germ per day. This comes out to around 1mg of pure spermidine.
Spermidine has been observed to be safe and effective up to 50mg/kg given intraperitoneally in rats which is well above the recommended doses in most commercially available oral supplements.17Martina Chrisam, Marinella Pirozzi, Silvia Castagnaro, Bert Blaauw, Roman Polishchuck, Francesco Cecconi, Paolo Grumati and Paolo Bonaldo, Reactivation of autophagy by spermidine ameliorates the myopathic defects of collagen VI-null mice Autophagy. 2015
Spermidine Safety, Toxicity, and Side Effects
Spermidine oral supplements are considered generally safe with no serious adverse side effects.18Claudia Schwarz, Slaven Stekovic, Miranka Wirth, et al, Safety and tolerability of spermidine supplementation in mice and older adults with subjective cognitive decline Aging (Albany NY). 2018
The studied lethal dose in rats is 620 mg/kg through injection cannot be replicated with the available spermidine treatments.19T Sakurada, K Onodera, T Tadano, K Kisara, Effects of polyamines on the central nervous system Jpn J Pharmacol. 1975
Spermidine and Gluten
Because spermidine is sourced mainly from wheat germ there is a small amount of gluten present. According to Spermidine Life, their spermidine contains 1.36mg of gluten per each recommended dose.
To give some perspective a 1 oz slice of white bread contains over 3500mg of gluten.20T Sakurada, K Onodera, T Tadano, K Kisara, Effects of polyamines on the central nervous system Jpn J Pharmacol. 1975
Consult your physician if you have a specific gluten allergy, sensitivity, or celiac.. Otherwise most people will not be affected by this.
Spermidine Life vs Primeadine
Spermidine Life and Primeadine are my top 2 choices for best spermidine supplement.
Both are focused primarily on spermidine which is an indicator of superior quality and attention to detail.
They are also both staffed with highly credible scientific advisory boards focused on the science of longevity and health.
Let me preface this review with the fact that with spermidine you don’t feel anything.
You’re not going to get a buzz or feel a jolt of energy or a wave of relaxation. You will feel the same as you always do.
There’s no way to really track longevity and autophagy without geeking out hard on blood tests and specific measurements, and still you can’t be totally sure of the final outcome.
In lieu of overcomplicating things I use my Oura ring and Lumen Metabolism tracker to track progress and see how my body reacts to spermidine.
That being said here are my thoughts on Spermidine Life and Primeadine
I recently used Primeadine for a few months and experienced boosts in both sleep and readiness scores on the Oura.
This means my body is adapting well to stress which is an indicator that my cells are working efficiently and keeping inflammation low.
The Lumen is also showing better metabolic flexibility which would be a strong indicator of autophagy and improved cellular health.
I take 1 pill 4x/week in the morning with breakfast.
This is 1/3 of the recommended dose of 1mg Spermidine and 900mg concentrated wheat germ.
While I’m currently taking Primeadine, this does not mean that I am against Spermidine Life.
I’m using Primeadine over Spermidine Life right now only because I heard about them first and got a bottle to review.
Spermidine Life is doing very cool things in the space and have several very enticing products which include blends aimed at memory enhancement and immunity along with a standard Spermidine product.
They’re scientific advisory board also includes a who’s who of longevity researchers and scientists including Dr. David Sinclair who is recognized as one of the top longevity researchers in the world.
I’ve also interviewed Don Moxley, Spermidine Life’s Director of Science, and a former NCAA championship wrestling coach who knows a thing or two about human performance.
At the end of the day you have to be your own judge and decide for yourself which one is right for you. It’s probably best to buy a bottle of each and measure your progress.
I highly recommend Spermidine.
As the evidence shows there is a ton of upside and very little downside.
Like all other supplements, quality is king and Primeadine and Spermidine Life wear the crowns.
I can’t emphasize enough how crucial it is to not buy a cheaper alternative. Either of these 2 brands will deliver the benefits you want and that’s the whole point of taking Spermidine in the first place.