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Spermidine, a naturally occurring compound found in a variety of foods, has emerged as a focal point of longevity and health research due to its remarkable ability to promote autophagy, the body’s cellular cleanup, and recycling process. Present in foods like aged cheese, mushrooms, legumes, and whole grains, spermidine’s role extends beyond mere nutrition. This article delves into the science behind spermidine, exploring how this compound could play a pivotal role in maintaining health, preventing age-related diseases, and promoting overall well-being.

What is Spermidine?

Spermidine, a naturally occurring compound, is found in a diverse range of food sources such as aged cheese, mushrooms, soy products, legumes, and whole grains. This substance plays a crucial role in the body’s cellular processes, primarily through its ability to initiate autophagy. Autophagy is a critical cellular mechanism that involves the breakdown and removal of damaged or dysfunctional cellular components, facilitating cellular repair and renewal. This process is vital for maintaining cellular health and function, potentially extending the lifespan of cells, and by extension, contributing to overall health and longevity.

The potential health benefits of spermidine are broad and significant. Research has shown that spermidine can support cardiovascular health by promoting heart and blood vessel health. Additionally, its role in autophagy offers neuroprotective benefits, potentially safeguarding against neurodegenerative diseases by maintaining neuronal health. There is also evidence to suggest that spermidine may contribute to reducing the risk of certain types of cancer, thanks to its ability to enhance the body’s cellular waste removal process.

Beyond its implications for disease prevention and health maintenance, spermidine’s influence on autophagy is believed to play a role in aging. By promoting the removal of cellular debris and supporting cell renewal, spermidine may help mitigate some of the cellular aspects of the aging process, contributing to a healthier, longer life. Furthermore, the fact that spermidine is readily available in many common foods makes it an accessible means of potentially enhancing one’s diet for health benefits.

Ongoing research continues to explore the full scope of spermidine’s effects on the human body, including its potential to improve metabolic health, support immune function, and even influence mood and cognitive function. As scientists delve deeper into the cellular mechanisms and effects of spermidine, its role in health and disease prevention becomes increasingly clear, highlighting the importance of dietary sources of this compound in supporting overall well-being.

What are the Health Benefits of Spermidine?

Spermidine has been linked to a range of potential health benefits, such as promoting cell growth and function, improving cognitive function, and reducing the risk of certain diseases. Incorporating spermidine-rich foods into your diet may be a good way to ensure that you are getting this important nutrient.

  • Promotion of Cellular Renewal and Longevity: Spermidine stimulates autophagy, the body’s cellular “cleanup” process, which can delay aging and extend lifespan. [PMC8612618]
  • Neuroprotective Effects: Spermidine has benefits in protecting against neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s by supporting neuronal health. [PMID: 32629145] Dietary spermidine improves cognitive function. [PMID: 33852843]
  • Mood Regulation and Cognitive Function: Preliminary studies suggest spermidine might have positive effects on mood and cognitive function, though more research is needed in this area. PMC6492385
  • Hair Growth: Preliminary studies suggest that spermidine could support hair growth and health by extending the anagen phase of the hair growth cycle, though more research is needed in this area. PMC3144892
  • Cardiovascular Health: It may help lower blood pressure and reduce heart disease risk by improving heart function and reducing inflammation. PMC9554131
  • Cancer Risk Reduction: Early research indicates spermidine might have anti-cancer properties by inducing autophagy in cancerous cells. PMID: 29371440, PMC6333461
  • Improved Digestive Health: By supporting the process of autophagy, spermidine may contribute to a healthier digestive system. PMID: 32407834
  • Enhanced Immune Response: Spermidine can support a healthy immune system, potentially leading to better overall health and resistance to diseases. PMC10043579, PMC9182079
  • Skin Health: Spermidine may play a role in enhancing skin health by promoting cell renewal and autophagy, potentially leading to slower aging of the skin and reduction in age-related skin changes. PMC7895926
  • Muscle Maintenance: There’s interest in spermidine’s role in muscle health, particularly in preventing age-related muscle loss (sarcopenia) through autophagy. PMC10298580
  • Bone Health: Autophagy, induced by spermidine, might also play a role in maintaining bone density and preventing osteoporosis by supporting the health of bone cells. PMC7895926

Food Sources of Spermidine

FoodServing SizeSpermidine Content
Wheat Germ Oil (Amazon Affiliate Link)1 tablespoon (13.6 g)22.7 mg
Wheat Germ (Amazon Affiliate Link)1 ounce (28.35 g)13.2 mg
Soybeans1 cup (172 g)59.8 mg
Tofu1/2 cup (126 g)31.3 mg
Soy Milk1 cup (243 g)3.7 mg
Cheddar Cheese1 oz (28 g)4.3 mg
Mushrooms1 cup (70 g)4.0 mg
Peas1 cup (160 g)3.0 mg
Broccoli1 cup (91 g)2.1 mg
Cauliflower1 cup (100 g)1.6 mg
*Amounts are approximate and vary with the food tested.


Spermidine Helps New Blood Vessel Growth

As people age, they are more susceptible to heart and brain diseases caused by insufficient blood supply. This is partially due to a reduced ability for creating new blood vessels, a process known as angiogenesis. Endothelial cells, which are integral in this process, become less efficient as they age.

Spermidine might be able to counter this decline. Previous research has shown that spermidine can prolong the healthy lifespan of various species including yeast, worms, flies, and mice.

A study recent study in Nature studied the effects of spermidine on the decline in angiogenesis associated with aging, both in lab experiments and in mice. The results showed that when endothelial cells became older and less efficient, adding spermidine improved their ability to form new blood vessels.

Older mice are prone to a condition where they develop insufficient blood supply to their limbs. A diet containing spermidine significantly improved the ability of older mice to form new blood vessels and restore blood flow to their limbs.

Spermidine seems to play a crucial role in facilitating the cleaning and renewal of cells, specifically through a process known as autophagy. Spermidine also contributes to the maintenance of the cells’ energy production machinery, the mitochondria, by enhancing a specific type of autophagy called mitophagy.

The results of this study suggest that spermidine might have potential as a therapeutic treatment for diseases caused by poor blood supply, a common problem in aging populations.

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Wheat Germ Oil by Standard Process

Wheat Germ Oil is used for systemic support of the body.*

  • Provides ingredients with antioxidant activity
  • Important for cell-signaling molecules
  • Supports the cells of the immune system and the body’s natural inflammatory response function as it relates to periodic challenges like consumption of a high-fat meal or strenuous activity
  • Supports the body’s function during exercise*

Take one softgel per meal, or as directed.

Amount Per 1 softgel Serving
Wheat germ oil … 385mg

Bulk wheat germ oil is estimated to have 22 mg of Spermidine per Tablespoon. It is available for purchase on Amazon.

Wheat germ oil has a distinct, nutty flavor that can add a rich depth to many dishes. It’s particularly good when used in salad dressings, drizzled over cooked vegetables, or as a finishing oil in smoothies and yogurt bowls to enhance their taste and nutritional value.

Food First!

Although this article discusses supplements in detail, don’t forget that we are absolutely committed to the “Food First” approach to nutrition. When it comes to your health, the totality of your eating habits far surpasses the impact of individual nutrients or any single supplement you consume. Even though this article doesn’t delve into the broader picture of your overall diet, it’s crucial to keep this element at the forefront of our minds. Your food needs to provide all the vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytochemicals to nourish your body systems down to the cellular level.

Food choices, rather than supplements, are the most critical factors for a healthy gut microbiome. These trillions of tiny inhabitants in your gut affect your brain waves; they orchestrate your immune system. They possess the power to create molecules that can switch genes on or off and are even capable of synthesizing neurotransmitters. Opting for organic foods and steering clear of plastic packaging (including those labeled BPA-free) is a smart move to limit toxin exposure. The sum of all these parts leads to a powerful conclusion: the ultimate key to your health lies in the quality and balance of the food you consume. Supplements are secondary.

To Sum It Up

In summary, the benefits of spermidine are both intriguing and far-reaching, with potential impacts on cellular renewal, heart health, and even lifespan. This naturally occurring polyamine has captured the attention of the scientific community and those in pursuit of health and longevity, underscoring its significant potential. As our understanding of health and longevity continues to evolve, compounds like spermidine are likely to play an increasingly central role. Embrace the journey, harness the potential benefits of spermidine, and take one more step towards a healthier, potentially longer life.

This Article is Not a Substitute for Medical Advice

Dietary supplements are not designed to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The Supplement Sciences website seeks to provide comprehensive access to the most relevant supplement information along with convenient online ordering. We do not provide medical advice and cannot guarantee that every product suggested is completely without risk. Since each person is unique in their health history and medication use, it is important to discuss supplements with your personal physician. Specifically, pregnant women and individuals being treated for cancer or liver or kidney problems must consult their physician about every nutritional supplement they plan to take. People taking medications for the treatment of HIV or with a history of organ transplant must not take supplements without consulting with their physician.

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