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Front Nutr. 2018 Jul 12;5:62. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2018.00062. eCollection 2018.

Nutritional Ketosis Increases NAD+/NADH Ratio in Healthy Human Brain: An in Vivo Study by 31P-MRS.

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Center for Biomedical Imaging, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland.
Clinical Development Unit, Nestlé Research Center, Lausanne, Switzerland.
Nestlé Institute of Health Sciences SA, Lausanne, Switzerland.
Nestlé Health Science, Epalinges, Switzerland.


Ketones represent an important alternative fuel for the brain under glucose hypo-metabolic conditions induced by neurological diseases or aging, however their metabolic consequences in healthy brain remain unclear. Here we report that ketones can increase the redox NAD+/NADH ratio in the resting brain of healthy young adults. As NAD is an important energetic and signaling metabolic modulator, these results provide mechanistic clues on how nutritional ketosis might contribute to the preservation of brain health.


NAD; brain energy metabolism; hydroxybutyrates; ketones; medium chain triglycerides; nutritional sciences; phosphorus magnetic resonance spectorscopy

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