This article is intended solely for informational purposes. It is not meant to be taken as, and should not be construed, as medical advice. Any changes to your lifestyle or diet should be done in consultation with your doctor or health care professional.

One way to increase the levels of NAD+ in your body is to drink some Pau D’Arco tea. Or for an even greater impact, make a Pau D’Arco “milk” by combining it with some oil and organic turmeric powder.

This is because the key active ingredient in Pau D’Arco is Beta-Lapachone.  Beta-Lapachone increases NAD+ in the body, but by a different mechanism than NR or NMN: it facilitates the conversion of NADH into NAD+. This article describes in detail how this process works.

Since Beta Laphachone increases NAD+ by conversion, it’s not a substitute for NAD boosters such as NR, niacin or NMN (which work by increasing the raw materials the body uses to make NAD), or fasting, HIIT exercise, or hot/cold contrast showers. (You have to have some NADH in your body, to convert it to NAD+). Rather, it should work well in conjunction with those supplements and interventions.

Dr. Joseph Mercola spoke in a recent interview about making a Pau D’Arco “milk” designed to increase our NAD+ levels.  His method is to soak Pau D’Arco powder in a glass of warm water overnight, then blend with some kind of fat or oil for two minutes –– he suggests coconut oil –– add curcumin or turmeric powder –– then strain it and drink up (or put it in a smoothie).

I tried making the “milk” using the method he recommended but did not have good results. Here’s what happened:

  • I soaked the contents of two capsules of organic Mercola Pau D’Arco in a cup of water overnight (to give time for all of the Beta Lapachone to soak into the water).
  • After soaking it overnight, I blended the tea with two tablespoons of coconut oil for two minutes as recommended. 
  • And… let’s just say it didn’t blend smoothly. It created a thick gloppy coating of coconut oil on the inside of the blender. There was no way to “strain” it; it would have just made an even gloppier mess in the strainer.

Based on my experience, I would not recommend using coconut oil, but using a liquid such as MCT oil or olive oil. Done that way, it’s more palatable and easier to drink. Put the mixture in a blender, add some a teaspoon or two or turmeric, blend and drink

  • P.S. There are other benefits of taking Pau D’Arco. One is that it has anti-carcinogenic properties, and selectively kills some types of cancer cells. It has also been found to have anti-inflammatory effects.
  • P.P.S. Pau D’Arco’s a powerful herb, with many reported benefits. But there have also been some reports of toxicity.
  • P.P.P.S. There are lots of brands of Pau D’Arco to choose from. I use Mercola’s product because it’s made solely from the inner bark of pink Lapacho trees, not the dead outer bark which some teas and supplements are made from, and because the Mercola line of supplements has a reputation for good quality control. I have no question that’s what’s in Mercola supplements is what’s listed on the label.