The Japanese have a life expectancy that is among the highest in the world. In fact, Okinawa, Japan’s famous “Island of Longevity,” likely has the world’s highest percentage of people over 100 years old.1
Undoubtedly, there are many factors that play into the life spans of the longest-living populations, but evidence shows that they all have one thing in common: high dietary intake of an amino acid called taurine.2
The connection between taurine and a long life is so strong that researchers have dubbed taurine, “The nutritional factor for the longevity of the Japanese.”3
Taurine promotes cardiovascular health, insulin sensitivity, electrolyte balance, hearing function, and immune modulation. In animal research, taurine protected against heart failure, reducing mortality by nearly 80%.4
Its benefits are so broad and extensive that scientists have described taurine as “a wonder molecule.”5
Taurine is found abundantly in healthy bodies.6 However, certain diets, particularly vegetarian or vegan diets, lack adequate amounts of taurine.7,8 Disease states—including liver, kidney, or heart failure, diabetes, and cancer—can all cause a deficiency in taurine.9-11 And aging bodies often cannot internally produce an optimal amount of taurine, making supplementation vital.12
That’s why those interested in longevity should consider this vital and super low-cost nutrient. In this article, you’ll learn how boosting taurine levels can contribute to better cardiovascular, metabolic, and neurologic health.
Why We Need Supplemental Taurine
In the enthusiasm to investigate new longevity compounds, sometimes the importance of venerable ones that have been around for decades is forgotten. Such is the case of taurine. Foundation members used to get taurine as part of multi-nutrient formula, but this product is not as popular as it once was.
A study released in November 2012 made the bold statement that taurine is one of the most essential substances in the body. The authors wrote:8 “Considering its broad distribution, its many cytoprotective attributes, and its functional significance in cell development, nutrition, and survival, taurine is undoubtedly one of the most essential substances in the body.”
Although it’s possible for your body to produce taurine on its own, you still need to obtain taurine through diet and supplementation in order to achieve optimal amounts of this essential nutrient.8,11,13
Because of taurine’s essential role in the body, supplementing with taurine can provide numerous health benefits, including restoring insulin sensitivity, mitigating diabetic complications, reversing cardiovascular disease factors, preventing and treating fatty liver disease, alleviating seizures, reversing tinnitus, and more.