The Peter Attia Drive

By Peter Attia, MD


The Peter Attia Drive will feature guests and experts that will offer advice and insight to help you optimize performance, health, longevity, critical thinking, and life. It’s hosted by Stanford M.D., TED speaker, and longevity expert Dr. Peter Attia, founder of Attia Medical, PC, a medical practice with offices in San Diego and New York City.


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#45 - AMA #4: sleep, jet lag protocol, autophagy, metformin, and more

In this “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) episode, the first subscriber-only edition, Peter answers a wide range of questions from readers and podcast listeners. Bob Kaplan, Peter’s head of research, asks the questions. As a reminder, AMAs are for subscribers only. If you want to subscribe, you can learn more about the benefits at If you are a subscriber, you can watch or listen to this in full on the show notes portion of our website. If you are listening to this on a podcast player, you will hear a sneak peek of this AMA and then will have to finish listening or watching on the website. All questions are pulled from the AMA section on the website ( Any subscriber is welcome to submit questions.   We discuss: Blue light blockers and how they improve sleep [1:30]; How to minimize jet lag and sleep disruption while traveling [6:45]; How to treat symptoms of PMS, the female hormone cycle, testosterone in women, and estrogen in men [15:45]; Autophagy: what it is, why it matters, and how can we enhance it [26:15]; The two-minute drill (and a bonus Patriots and Tom Brady tangent) [41:15]; Has Peter thought about having CME accredited content for people in the medical field? [44:15]; How does one find good doctors that are somewhat up to date on the latest research, primary care, etc.? [45:45]; What values would Peter be interested in monitoring continuously if the tech existed? [47:15]; How to annoy Peter [49:15]; If I'm interested in longevity, should I do a Ph.D. or M.D.? [50:00]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#44 - Jeremy Schaap, ESPN journalist: upsets, doping, triumphs, and the importance of sports

In this episode, Jeremy Schaap, preeminent journalist at ESPN, discusses two of the most incredible upsets in boxing history, both of which Jeremy has expertly covered during his illustrious career, most recently culminating in the 30 for 30 special, 42 to 1. We also discuss his infamous Bobby Knight interview, his coverage of the doping scandals in baseball and cycling, as well as the pressures of following in his father’s enormous footsteps who taught him the importance of fairness in journalism. Additionally, we discuss the deeper meaning of sports, what it teaches us, and how he uses sports as a platform to bring light to greater societal issues.    We discuss: Jeremy and Peter’s shared obsession with boxing history [5:15]; Cinderella Man: The incredible upset of Max Baer by James Braddock, and the rise of the great Joe Louis [9:00]; 42 to 1: Buster Douglas beats Mike Tyson for one of the most unlikely upsets in the history of sports [23:30]; Contrasting fighting styles from “destroyers” to “artists”, and comparing the auras of the all-time greats [36:30]; Mike Tyson’s take on the Douglas fight, what went wrong for Buster Douglas following his victory, and other incredible upsets in sports history [45:30]; Ranking the greatest boxers since the 1960s [54:00]; Jeremy’s famous Bobby Knight interview: A career defining moment [57:00]; The pressures of following his father’s career path, and what it means to be a fair journalist [1:01:30]; The meaning of sports: how it brings us together and gives us a platform for bigger discussions [1:11:00]; Jeremy’s biggest regret in reporting, the 1998 home run chase, and the doping scandals of baseball and cycling [1:17:30]; The biggest and most underreported stories in sports [1:26:45]; Best 30 for 30 episodes: Jeremy and Peter pick their favorites [1:31:30]; Baseball: Steroids and the hall of fame [1:34:30]; Final thoughts on what makes sports so special [1:37:45]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#43 - Alan Bauman, M.D.: The science of male and female hair restoration - how to protect, enhance, and restore the appearance and health of the hair and scalp

In this episode, Alan Bauman, certified hair transplantation surgeon and hair restoration expert, discusses both male and female pattern hair loss, the science behind what drives it, and what that tells us about prevention and restoration. Having treated over 20,000 patients, Alan shares his invaluable insights into what works and what doesn’t in terms of the non-surgical treatment options. We also go into great detail about the more invasive approaches like PRP, and of course, hair transplantation, a procedure which Alan has refined over the years into a proprietary method that seems to produce unbelievable results. Additionally, Alan provides tips for maintaining scalp health, which is vital for hair growth, as well as the importance of choosing a hair specialist who has the tools, expertise, and patience to develop a compassionate and encompassing approach to hair restoration.    We discuss: Alan’s unique path, and how he became interested in hair transplantation [7:15]; The prevalence of hair loss, types of hair loss, and the different patterns in men vs. women [15:45]; The role of genetics in hair loss, and when does it start [19:00]; Female hair loss: the role of hormones, pregnancy related hair loss, and what it means to have thinning and shedding [22:30]; Primary drivers of male hair loss, finasteride as a treatment, and the potential side effects [26:15]; Common treatments - Proscar, Propecia, Rogaine, and more - how they all came about and what you need to know [29:45]; Primary drivers of female hair loss, potential treatments, and the different types of hair follicles [33:15]; What are some of the unproven/snake oil methods of hair treatments being pushed to the public? [37:15]; Preventative steps to take if you’re worried about future hair loss [42:00]; Medications that may negatively affect hair quality [45:30]; The importance of seeing a hair specialist [47:15]; Impact of scalp health and inflammation on hair growth, how to pick and apply shampoo and conditioner, and how to avoid and treat hair breakage [50:15]; Treatment options - finasteride, minoxidil, laser caps - how they work and what you need to know [57:15]; PRP treatment: How it works, details of the procedure, and Alan’s proprietary protocol [1:11:45]; The hair transplant procedure [1:29:30]; Risks involved with a hair transplant procedure [1:44:00]; Is a donor hair susceptible to the forces of the implant site that caused the hair loss? Can a hair follicle grow anywhere on the body? [1:47:45]; Age appropriate procedures, how far the field has come, and why Alan loves his work [1:51:45]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#42 - Avrum Bluming, M.D., and Carol Tavris, Ph.D.: Controversial topic affecting all women—the role of hormone replacement therapy through menopause and beyond—the compelling case for long-term HRT a

In this episode, Avrum Bluming, hematologist, medical oncologist, and emeritus clinical professor at USC and Carol Tavris, social psychologist and author of Mistakes Were Made (But Not By Me), discuss their collaboration on their recent book, Estrogen Matters. Their book takes on the very polarizing and confusing topic of hormone replacement therapy for women suffering with symptoms of menopause. In many ways, the story and history of HRT is in striking parallel to the bad science that led up to the dietary guidelines being set forth in 1980. Carol and Avrum make a compelling case that most women benefit greatly from being on postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy, and can do so without increasing their risk of breast cancer. We also cover the history of HRT, the impact of the Women's Health Initiative, and take a deep dive into each of the clinical conditions for which HRT should be considered, such as cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative disease, and osteoporosis, to name a few. We discuss: The background of Carol and Avrum, and the impetus for writing Estrogen Matters [8:45]; The sad early history of hormone replacement therapy, treatments for prostate and breast cancer, and the difference between the treatment of women vs. men [14:00]; What hormones do, and why they drop off rapidly in women compared to gradually in men [20:15]; Mistreatment of women leading to great skepticism [23:45]; Breast cancer vs heart disease: Comparing the incidence and mortality in women [27:00]; Case studies of women suffering symptoms of menopause [30:00]; What are Carol and Avrum’s true motivations in this endeavor? [32:45]; The changing perceptions of HRT, the impact of the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI), and the problems with the WHI [37:45]; Is this one big conspiracy? The uncanny resemblance of the story of HRT and how the dietary guidelines were created [46:00]; Why people (falsely) think estrogen causes a 25% increase in breast cancer, and a lesson in absolute vs. relative risk [57:15]; The truth about progesterone and cancer risk, and the best types of estrogen and progesterone to be taking [1:09:00]; The Women’s Health Initiative: the reported findings, walking back their bold claims, and their hesitance to admit they were wrong [1:17:45]; Brain benefits of HRT, Alzheimer’s disease in women, and estrogen as a preventative treatment for AD [1:22:45]; The impact of HRT on heart disease, the ideal time to start HRT, and the risks associated with HRT [1:26:45]; The benefits of estrogen on bone health, and the incidence and mortality of hip fractures [1:33:15]; Colon cancer: Can HRT reduce the risk of colon cancer? [1:38:15]; Diabetes: Can HRT reduce the risk of developing diabetes? [1:40:30]; The downsides of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) [1:41:30]; How to approach your doctor who may already have a very strong point of view about HRT [1:42:15]; What kind of research needs to be done to answer the remaining questions about the benefits and risks of HRT? [1:48:30]; Cancer: Our evolving understanding and the future of treatment [1:59:15]; Welcoming the critics: Avrum and Carol want to start a conversation [2:02:00]; Are there racial differences in benefits and risks with HRT? [2:04:15]; The reactions to Estrogen Matters, and why it is a must read [2:09:15]; HRT after a diagnosis of breast cancer [2:13:45]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#41 - Jake Kushner, M.D.: How to thrive with type 1 diabetes and how everyone can benefit from the valuable insights

In this episode, Jake Kushner, pediatric endocrinologist specializing in helping people with type 1 diabetes, discusses the best strategies to live and thrive with T1D, especially as it relates to diet and exercise. We also discuss why many patients who control their blood sugar with high amounts of exogenous insulin are at a substantially higher risk than people who can control their blood sugar at lower levels of insulin. This concept has great implications for non-diabetics as well considering the increasing prevalence of diseases related to insulin resistance. We also cover some of the basics, the history, the increasing prevalence of type 1 diabetes, and more importantly, what we can do to help kids with this disease, and their families.   We discuss: How Jake became interested in type 1 diabetes [5:30]; The pathophysiology of type 1 diabetes, the increase in prevalence, and the role of beta cells [17:00]; The role of body weight and BMI in the risk of developing T1D [27:00]; Genetics of T1D and the risk of inheritance [32:00]; Hemoglobin A1c [36:15]; Insulin: the amazing story of its discovery, its effect on cellular metabolism and IGF-1, and why the hell it’s so expensive [39:15]; Diabetes Control and Complication Trial: blood glucose and the complications associated with diabetes [54:45]; Cognitive impairment, epigenetic changes, and other dangers associated with high, peak blood glucose, and big swings in blood glucose levels [1:09:15]; Depression, anxiety, and other challenges of living with T1D [1:15:30]; Jake’s realization that the current standard of care of T1D is inadequate [1:26:15]; Managing diabetes with exercise [1:30:15]; The Bernstein method, and protein’s impact on glucose and insulin [1:36:15]; Jake radically changes his approach to treating patients [1:45:00]; What other tools are there for controlling T1D? [1:49:45]; Is the ketogenic diet appropriate for those with T1D? [1:52:45]; The most important lessons that can be applied by the non-diabetic population [1:59:00]; The two dream measurements Peter wishes were available [2:04:00]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#40 - Tom Catena, M.D.: The world’s most important doctor – to nearly a million patients – saving countless lives in the war-torn and remote villages of Sudan

In this episode, Tom Catena, a missionary physician who runs Mother of Mercy Hospital in the Nuba Mountains in Sudan, describes some of his extraordinary work as the only doctor in a remote, war-torn region of Africa. In terms of individual lives saved, you could argue that there is no other person on the front lines doing more than Tom. Additionally, we explore the manner in which the Nuba people die, which is in striking contrast the ubiquity of chronic disease and self-harm in the west, despite the extreme poverty and unimaginable suffering experienced by the Nuba people. Lastly, we discuss the lessons to be gleaned from the Nuba people, who despite their suffering, live so harmoniously, happily, and resiliently. To support Tom’s mission please visit We discuss: Background, medical training, and early days of missionary work in Africa [9:00]; Tom arrives at Mother of Mercy Hospital in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan, civil war breaks out, and his staff evacuates [15:45]; Learning surgery on the job and earning the trust of the community [40:45]; The amazing people of Nuba, and why Nuba feels like home to Tom [51:30]; NY Times article about Tom’s work, and Tom’s new venture on the board of Aurora Prize Foundation bringing awareness and funding to other missionaries doing great work [1:03:30]; Tom’s mind-blowing ability to deal with chaos while seeing hundreds of patients per day [1:15:45]; The most afraid Tom has ever been, and how he copes with the emotional trauma of his daily experiences [1:23:30]; The basic tools, technologies, and medicines that Tom is lacking that could save many lives [1:33:30]; The logistical challenge of helping Tom’s hospital, and what Tom really needs [1:39:15]; Diseases in the adult population [1:42:30]; Living without possessions, finding meaning, and being a missionary [1:59:30]; Sense of purpose, happiness, and suicide: Contrasting the US with Nuba [2:11:00]; Other than donations, is there a way people can help Tom and other similar causes? [2:19:15]; The food in Nuba [2:22:30]; Tom’s annual bout of malaria [2:27:30]; Patients that Tom will never forget [2:29:45]; Resources for people wanting to get involved in helping Tom’s work [2:34:45]; Peter tells a story that defines Tom [2:36:00]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#39 - Ted Schaeffer, M.D., Ph.D.: How to catch, treat, and survive prostate cancer

In this episode, Ted Schaeffer, Professor and Chair of the Department of Urology at Northwestern (youngest chairman in the country), presents the roadmap for the best way to screen for, and treat, prostate cancer. We also get into the “mass screening” controversy and all the risks involved with treatment. In addition, we discuss our evolving understanding of cancer and the most exciting areas of research to come.  We discuss: Ted’s unique path to get his PhD [5:15]; The exciting transition in science during Ted’s PhD in the 1990s [15:30]; Ted’s advice to MD-PhD students, and why he choose urology and Johns Hopkins [23:45]; History of prostate surgery, and Pat Walsh’s legendary work in prostate cancer [36:15]; Prostate surgery and the risks involved with treatment [53:00]; Screening for prostate cancer [58:00]; The “mass screening” controversy [1:12:45]; Biopsies and MRI: important things to know [1:25:30]; Why urology such a great field of medicine, and why Peter wants a goat [1:34:45]; Ted’s work with Ben Stiller [1:39:00]; Gleason grading system [1:43:45]; Testosterone, DHT and the prostate cancer controversy [1:53:15]; The metabolism of the prostate [2:03:00]; The most exciting areas of research in prostate cancer [2:08:00]; Benign issues involving the prostate: pelvic pain, infections and treatments [2:11:15]; Video of Ted’s surgeries, the latest technology, and males contraceptive options [2:18:00]; Watches and cars [2:23:30]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#38 - Francisco Gonzalez-Lima, Ph.D.: Advancing Alzheimer’s disease treatment and prevention – is AD actually a vascular and metabolic disease?

In this episode, Francisco Gonzalez-Lima, a Professor of Neuroscience and Pharmacology & Toxicology, explains the vascular hypothesis of Alzheimer’s disease which says the central problem is a progressive neuronal energy crisis of impaired blood flow to the brain and impaired mitochondrial respiration. He walks us through the ways we can intervene in this process and also shares details of the exciting future of Alzheimer’s treatment and prevention. We discuss: Background and interest in the brain [5:15]; The unique nature of the human brain [9:15]; Why we’ve made so little progress in Alzheimer’s research [23:00]; The amyloid beta hypothesis [28:30]; Hypometabolism in the brain leading to cognitive decline [39:30]; Early signs of AD, and deciphering between age-related decline versus something pathologic [47:45]; The vascular hypothesis of Alzheimer’s disease [54:00]; The relationship between mitochondria, cytochrome c oxidase, and Alzheimer’s disease [1:08:00]; Chronic inhibition of cytochrome c oxidase leads to chronic neurodegenerative disease [1:22:45]; Major risk factors for AD, head trauma, and other forms of dementia [1:33:45]; Methylene blue for treating and preventing neurodegeneration [1:38:15]; Current standard of care for AD, and the reasons for a lack of advancement [2:01:45]; Near infrared light as a targeted treatment for cognitive decline [2:05:30]; The ketogenic diet as a treatment and preventative measure [2:13:15]; Exciting future research coming from Francisco [2:13:00]; Methylene blue for traumatic brain injuries [2:25:15]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#34 - Sam Harris, Ph.D.: The transformative power of mindfulness

In this episode, Sam Harris, neuroscientist, author, and host of the Waking Up Podcast, walks us through the profound, yet practical, ways that meditation can transform our lives. Additionally, he helps to define the types of meditation and clarifies potential misconceptions with terms like happiness, pain, and suffering. We discuss: The transformative moment that led to Peter reaching out to Sam [3:45]; Comparing the two broad types of meditation, and Peter’s favorite meditation apps [7:45]; The pleasure of a concentrated mind, meditating with pain, and the difference between pain and suffering [13:15]; What it means to be happy, and how to break out of our default state [23:15]; The disease of distraction, why humans suffer, the limitation of happiness, and letting go of anger with mindfulness [31:00]; The challenge of learning mindfulness, the benefit of silent retreats, and Sam’s first experience in solitude as a teenager [54:15]; Sam’s life-altering experience with MDMA [1:03:00]; Mettā meditation a.k.a. loving-kindness, and the concept of ‘moral luck’ [1:14:00]; Overcoming grief and dread with meditation [1:34:45]; The wrong way to practice mindfulness, and the difference between Vipassana and Dzogchen [1:44:45]; Sam’s commitment to never lie, honesty in politics, and Sam’s viewpoint on the Trump phenomenon [2:06:00]; Teaching kids to be more mindful [2:18:30]; Sam’s current book projects, the consequences of a politically correct environment, and the potential of neuroscience to cure psychopathy [2:25:30]; How you can follow Sam’s work [2:39:00]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#32 - Siddhartha Mukherjee, M.D., Ph.D.: new frontiers in cancer therapy, medicine, and the writing process

In this episode, Siddhartha Mukherjee, oncologist, researcher, and author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book “The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer,” discusses his writing process, his thoughts about medicine, cancer, immunotherapy, and his recent collaboration on a study combining a ketogenic diet with a drug in mice that provided remarkable and encouraging results. We discuss: Sid’s background [5:00]; How Sid and Peter met [6:00]; Sid’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book: The Emperor of All Maladies [8:00]; Sid’s writing process: the tenets of writing [12:30]; Our struggle to find preventable, human, chemical carcinogens of substantial impact [23:30]; The three laws of medicine — Law #1: A strong intuition is much more powerful than a weak test [26:30]; Law #2 of medicine: “Normals” teach us rules; “outliers” teach us laws [32:00]; Law #3 of medicine: For every perfect medical experiment, there is a perfect human bias [35:00]; The excitement around immunotherapy [38:15]; The story of Gleevec [46:00]; How does the body's metabolic state affect cancer? [49:30]; Can a nutritional state be exploited and/or a drug sensitivity be exploited through a nutritional intervention? [52:00]; How does Sid balance his family, writing, research, laboratory, and patients? [1:00:30]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#30 - Thomas Seyfried, Ph.D.: Controversial discussion—cancer as a mitochondrial metabolic disease?

In this episode, Thomas Seyfried, a cancer researcher and professor of biology at Boston College, discusses a controversial view of cancer as a mitochondrial metabolic disease. Many topics related to the causes, treatments, and prevention of cancer are covered in this in-depth conversation. We discuss: How Tom got interested in cancer research [9:00]; Calorie-restricted ketogenic diets, fasting, and epileptic seizures [18:30]; Otto Warburg and the Warburg effect [30:45]; Germline mutations, somatic mutations, and no mutations [42:00]; Mitochondrial substrate level phosphorylation: Warburg’s missing link [51:30]; What is the structural defect in the mitochondria in cancer? [1:02:00]; Peter’s near-death experience with the insulin suppression test while in ketosis [1:06:30]; Insulin potentiation therapy and glutamine inhibition [1:13:15]; The macrophage fusion-hybrid theory of metastasis [1:39:30]; How are cancer cells growth dysregulated without a mutation? [1:47:00]; What is the dream clinical trial to test the hypothesis that we can reduce the death rates of cancer by 50%? [2:03:15]; How can the hypothesis be tested rigorously that structural abnormalities in the mitochondria impair respiration and lead to compensatory fermentation? [2:26:30]; Case studies of GBM survivors [2:32:45]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#29 - Apolo Anton Ohno: 8-time Olympic medalist – extreme training, discipline, pursuing perfection, and responding to adversity

In this episode, 8-time Olympic medalist, Apolo Ohno, discusses the lessons he’s learned from his remarkable career in speed skating and the extreme physical and mental training — and determination — required to reach greatness. We discuss: Apolo’s childhood with his single dad, early success in sports, and falling in love with skating [7:30]; The differences between inline and ice skating, and short- & long-track speed-skating, and the evolution of the clap skate [21:00]; The mental game and the physical game: intense training and mindset [29:30]; Apolo’s early success in short-track that led to an amazing opportunity and his reluctance to go for it [40:15]; Early days at Lake Placid, first experience on the world stage, and a little self-sabotage [56:45]; Tough love parenting, making a commitment, training like Rocky, and developing the mindset of a fighter [1:17:30]; 2002 Olympics, winning his first medal, and rising above the sport [1:32:45]; Apolo’s evolving training and body composition throughout his Olympic career [2:05:15]; Going into the Lion’s Den to learn from Korean skaters and making a radical and risky change that led to his most successful Olympic games [2:12:45]; Apolo’s tumultuous relationship with South Korea, from hatred to respect to admiration [2:29:00]; Applying lessons learned through training, adjusting to life after skating, and the struggles many athletes face transitioning to retirement [2:46:30]; The final years of Apolo’s career: intense focus, crazy training, mental fortitude, and resiliency [2:57:30]; Officially retiring and contemplating a comeback [3:16:15]; Where does Apolo want to be in 10 years? [3:22:45]; The pursuit of perfection and flow states [3:29:30]; Where you can follow Apolo [3:35:00]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#28 - Mark and Chris Bell: steroids, powerlifting, addiction, diet, training, helping others, documentaries, and living your best life

In this episode, Mark and Chris Bell discuss their love of powerlifting, their unbelievable personal records, and what prompted the making of their now iconic film, Bigger, Stronger, Faster. They also very openly discuss steroid use, their tragic family history with addiction, the many inspirations that lead to their multifaceted success, and their dedication to having a positive impact on others in fitness and life. We discuss: The impact of Bigger, Stronger, Faster, how it got made, and how it challenged Peter’s set of beliefs regarding steroids [4:45]; Chris’s personal story of addiction and how he’s using his experience to help others [17:30]; Importance of sharing your struggle, and the danger of comparing yourself to others [28:00]; Early life, their love of pro wrestling and what motivated Brothers Bell to be great? [33:45]; How they got started lifting weights, powerlifting vs Olympic lifting, and personal records [43:30]; Lifting weights: the importance of challenging yourself, how to avoid injury, monitoring progress, and staying motivated [1:02:30]; Chris on how changing his diet changed his performance and life [1:09:15]; Best resources for those wanting to get started lifting weights effectively and safely [1:14:00]; Teaching kids strength training early in life, the negative impact of sitting and how we can minimize it [1:18:30]; Benefits of bodybuilding, Mark’s prep for his first competition, and the role of the ketogenic diet [1:27:15]; The steroid controversy: Mark’s use of them and Peter’s perspective [1:42:15]; Testosterone: Peter’s approach to improving it in patients, and the impact of sleep, cortisol, and statins on production [1:51:00]; Upcoming nutrition documentary [2:03:00]; Parting advice from Mark [2:05:00]; Kratom, a powerful plant with the potential to help opioid addiction and more [2:06:15]; The many resources and ways to follow Mark and Chris [2:07:45]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#27 - David Sinclair, Ph.D.: Slowing aging – sirtuins, NAD, and the epigenetics of aging

In this episode, David A. Sinclair, Ph.D., a Professor in the Department of Genetics at Harvard Medical School and co-Director of the Paul F. Glenn Center for the Biological Mechanisms of Aging, provides insight into why we age and how to slow its effects based on his remarkable work on the role of sirtuins and NAD in health and diseases. He also presents the case that stabilizing the epigenetic landscape may be the linchpin in counteracting aging and disease.  We discuss: How and why David moved from Australia to Leonard Guarente’s lab at MIT [7:30]; Sirtuins and aging [15:00]; A series of experiments elucidating the mechanisms of sirtuins [20:45]; How are sirtuins activated? [25:30]; NAD and sirtuin activation [31:00]; Nicotinamide, sirtuin inhibition, andPNC1 [39:00]; Resveratrol [43:00]; The NIH/ITP studies on resveratrol [55:45]; Does David take any compounds for longevity? [1:00:15]; NAD precursors (NR, NMN) and pterostilbene [1:02:45]; Female fertility and NAD precursors [1:14:45]; A unifying theory of aging [1:20:30]; Waddington’s epigenetic landscape [1:23:00]; If David had unlimited resources, what is the experiment he would do? [1:28:25]; Testing combinations to extend lifespan [1:31:30]; What made David aware of his mortality at such a young age? [01:33:45]; What is David’s book going to cover? [01:37:15]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#26 - AMA #3: supplements, women’s health, patient care, and more

In this “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) episode, Peter answers a wide range of questions from readers and podcast listeners. Bob Kaplan, Peter’s head analyst, asks the questions. This also marks the first video release of the podcast. You can find it on YouTube ( and the website ( If you have any questions for the next AMA, please submit them to the AMA section on the website ( We discuss: What references ranges does Peter consider too broad on lab tests? [5:30]; What aspect of women’s health is the least studied/understood? [21:15]; What are your thoughts on fasting and ketosis for females? [31:30]; Advice for medical students and residents, how to get through it, and optimize their time while in med school [38:00]; What is Peter’s opinion on the best way to monetize a podcast to make it sustainable? [47:45]; What are you looking to achieve and monitor with your blood glucose monitor? [57:15]; Thoughts on lithium supplementation? [1:08:15]; Insights about berberine? [1:16:00]; Why does Peter take a baby aspirin? What does the science say? [1:19:20]; How do you use HR variability as a metric in your practice and/or in your own personal use? Sleep, pre/post exercise, pre/post eating, every morning readiness? [1:23:25]; With the emergence of “the coconut oil is pure poison” article, can you shed some light on saturated fat in the literature and the types of studies done specifically on coconut oil? [1:38:45]; Would you discuss the recent meta studies that claim that moderate carbohydrate intake may be best for health? [1:40:45]; What is the number one recommendation/habit you would suggest every person add to their daily regimen (besides physical activity) for wholesome health? [1:42:45]; What does it mean if your body has a harder time getting into ketosis via fasting than it used to (testing using a Precision Xtra)? [1:44:15]; Why are you taking Zetia and Lipitor? Are you mitigating risk based on your APOE4? Or is there something else going on? [1:46:10]; What will your book be about and what is the expected release date? [1:47:45]; What are your thoughts on nicotinamide riboside supplementation for longevity? [1:49:30]; Which brand of supplements have you found to be effective? [1:54:30]; Are you currently accepting new patients? And how do I find a ‘Peter Attia clone’ in my area? [1:56:20]; Bob’s personal experience with Peter as a doctor [1:58:45]; Can you tell us more about the latest and best of APOE4? [2:06:15]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook| Twitter| Instagram.


#19 - Dave Feldman: stress testing the lipid energy model

In this episode, Dave Feldman, discusses his journey from software engineer to n=1 experimenter, his experience with low-carbohydrate diets, and his hypothesis that cholesterol levels are influenced by energy metabolism.   We discuss: Peter’s synthesis of Dave’s energy model [5:00]; Dave’s journey from software engineer to cholesterol enthusiast [15:00]; Standard blood panels, sterol panels, and what moves the needle when it comes to particle numbers [18:30]; Hyper-responders [20:00]; Lipoprotein transport [33:45]; The lean mass hyper-responder phenotype [47:30]; The progression of atherosclerosis, CAC, and CIMT [52:30]; Testing for oxidized LDL [55:30]; All-cause mortality and clinical endpoints [1:01:15]; What does “LDL as causal” mean? [1:05:15]; Dave’s low carb cholesterol challenge and drug & genetic study qualifications [1:13:15]; If all other markers are in an healthy range, but LDL-P is high, is the patient at risk? A couple of case studies, and a self-experiment [1:27:30]; Peter’s three-day exercise and ketosis experiment [1:41:00]; What are remnant lipoproteins? [1:45:00]; What might cause lean mass hyper-responders to have higher LDL particle numbers? [1:53:30]; A case study from Dave of a lean mass hyper-responder [1:56:30]; Mass balance and cholesterol flux [2:05:30]; Can a higher degree of cholesterol explain the lean mass hyper-responder phenotype? [2:10:00]; Peter’s LDL during his keto-fast-keto experiment [2:13:30]; Does substituting saturated fats with monounsaturated fats lower LDL-P and LDL-C? [2:15:45]; Dave’s carb-swap experiments [2:22:15]; Dave’s carotid intima-media thickness tests [2:41:15]; Looking for studies that stratify for high HDL-C and low TG alongside low and high LDL-C [2:53:00]; and More Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#18 - Richard Isaacson, M.D.: Alzheimer’s prevention

In this episode, Richard Isaacson, a neurologist and director of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic at Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian, discusses strategies for staving off Alzheimer’s disease. Richard shares a wealth of insight for people who want to know more about Alzheimer’s and what you can do to help yourself and your loved ones – starting today and continuing throughout the entire lifespan.   We discuss: Richard’s fun-facts (and alter egos): “bling” phones, Doogie Howser, and DJ Rush [8:00]; Richard’s impetus to focus on Alzheimer’s disease: Uncle Bob [18:20]; Starting an Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic [27:00]; How Alzheimer’s is diagnosed [30:00]; Short-term memory, processing speed, executive function and how they’re tested [35:45]; Prevention vs reduction of Alzheimer’s [44:00]; What is the prevalence of Alzheimer’s in America? [49:30]; How do people actually die from Alzheimer’s or dementia? [51:30]; How can people do everything right and still get Alzheimer’s? It’s all about AGE [55:15]; The APOE gene [58:15]; Why is the risk of Alzheimer’s higher for women? [1:13:00]; How many different paths lead to Alzheimer’s? [1:15:45]; What role does MTHFR play in Alzheimer’s? [1:19:45]; What are the “ABCs” of Alzheimer’s prevention? [1:26:45]; Baptists, Tauists, Syners, and Apostates [1:36:30]; Concerns with statin use for high-risk patients [1:45:00]; The use of Theracurmin [1:48:45]; What are the five actionable things one can do to reduce the risk for Alzheimer’s today? [1:54:30]; The cognitive reserve [2:14:15]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#15 - Paul Conti, M.D.: trauma, suicide, community, and self-compassion

In this episode, psychiatrist Paul Conti, M.D. discusses the impact of untreated trauma, the rising rate of suicide, and the influence of modern society on mental health, to name a few important topics covered. Paul also talks about how to deal with these challenges for yourself, your loved ones, and the community at large. We discuss: Paul’s background, and what drove him to psychiatry [5:00]; How silent bravado and incessant striving can lead to a functional (and actual) death, and why Paul is critical of the current state of psychiatry [14:45]; Psychedelics, psychotherapy and the dissolution of the ego [20:30]; How current society may be contributing to the increasing amount of suffering [25:00]; The ubiquity and impact of untreated trauma [31:45]; The rising rate of suicide, parasuicide, and “accidental” death [35:30]; Types of trauma, why we minimize it, and Peter’s introduction to Bridge to Recovery [44:00]; Triggering shame and fear, childhood trauma, and why trauma doesn’t care about time [48:00]; The impact of the brain on the body, and overcoming trauma with self-awareness [55:00]; How to recognize and stop the cycle of shame transference [1:04:30]; Peter’s profound experience at Bridge to Recovery, and the importance of finding shared experiences with others [1:11:15]; How to identify and deal with our own personal trauma [1:19:00]; Finding meaning in struggle, why we are less happy than ever, and the impact of an isolated society [1:25:30]; What steps can we take as a society to make an appreciable impact on the rising sense of desperation and misery? [1:43:15]; Resources, book recommendations, and things you can do [1:56:15]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#14 - Robert Lustig, M.D., M.S.L.: fructose, processed food, NAFLD, and changing the food system

In this episode, Rob Lustig — a researcher, an expert in fructose metabolism, and a former pediatric endocrinologist — discusses what’s wrong with the current food environment, and what we can do to reduce our chances of becoming part of the obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) epidemics. Rob recently earned a Master of Studies in Law because he believes that educating people about sugar from a scientific standpoint is only half the equation: the other half involves changing policy, which he explains in this episode. We discuss: What’s the difference between glucose and fructose? [7:00]; Do we have biomarkers that can give us some indication of average exposure to fructose over a given period of time? [14:20]; What’s the difference between ALT and AST? [18:45]; Inflammation, endothelial function, and uric acid [21:30]; Is there something that fructose does better than glucose? [23:45]; For children that undergo a remarkable shift from metabolic health to metabolic derangement, is there a concern that these kids suffer an epigenetic hit that makes it harder for them later in life? [26:15]; How many times do you have to introduce a savory food vs a sugary food to an infant before they will accept it? [29:30]; How are alcohol and fructose similar in how they affect the brain? [33:51]; Advice for parents and kids for creating a sustainable environment that's going to prevent them from running into metabolic problems [40:30]; Why do some populations have a higher risk for NAFLD? [45:42]; What causes NAFLD? [48:45]; Is insulin resistance the result of NAFLD or is NAFLD the result of insulin resistance? [56:00]; HRV, cortisol, and norepinephrine [1:00:30]; What are the actual mechanisms that links metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance, fatty liver, and type 2 diabetes? [1:03:00]; Is the food industry still saying that all calories contribute equally to adiposity and insulin resistance? [1:09:00]; What is the difference between soluble and insoluble fiber and why do you need both? [1:13:00]; How can we change the food system when 10 companies control almost 90 percent of the Calories we consume in the US? [1:15:00]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#12 - Corey McCarthy: Overcoming trauma, dealing with shame, finding meaning, changing the self-narrative, redemption, and the importance of gratitude

Corey and Peter met when they visited North Kern State Prison in California together as volunteers for Defy Ventures. Peter was moved by Corey’s remarkable story, who is a former inmate himself, and realized he had to have him on the podcast to share his experiences with a wider audience. You’ll almost assuredly take away something very important from listening to this episode. Understanding how your experiences can define you, what forgiveness means of both yourself and others, and how good people can do bad things, are just a few of the takeaways. We discuss: How Corey and Peter met through Defy Ventures [4:00]; How Corey’s prison experience has shaped his life story [13:30]; Corey’s early life, and the traumatic event that changed everything [16:00]; Early adolescence years, beginnings of addiction, and overwhelming shame [23:00]; The 5 ways to classify wounds, and the relationship between trauma and addiction [39:00]; Turbulent high school years, the struggle of parenting a troubled child, and more trauma further shaping the self-narrative [46:00]; Post high school years, spiraling out of control, and giving up on himself [1:02:00]; Navigating prison life, and why a desire to change often isn’t enough to make it happen  [1:19:00]; The turning point and eventual road to recovery [1:48:00]; 12 step programs: Pros and Cons [1:54:00]; Final days in prison, getting released, and routines Corey has kept [1:54:00] Corey’s new perspective on life, takeaways from the visit to Kern prison [2:12:30]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#10 - Matt Kaeberlein, Ph.D.: rapamycin and dogs — man’s best friends? — living longer, healthier lives and turning back the clock on aging, and age-related diseases

Matt is someone who is deeply interested in understanding the biology of aging. Why do we age? What happens to us as we age? What are the things we can do to slow the aging process? How can we delay or prevent the onset of age-related diseases? These are all questions that Matt thinks deeply about, and explores these questions with his research at the University of Washington. He is currently investigating many of these questions through the Dog Aging Project and the compound rapamycin—the only known pharmacological agent to extend lifespan all the way from yeast to mammals—across a billion years of evolution. We talk about cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, healthspan, lifespan, and what we can do to provide longer, healthier lives for both people and dogs. We discuss: Matt’s early years and his a-ha moment on aging [4:00]; Studying dogs [6:30]; Dogs, rapamycin, and its effects on lifespan and healthspan [15:30]; An unexpected finding in presumably healthy dogs [36:00]; Rapamycin in cancer treatment [50:00]; Why isn’t there a rapamycin trial for Alzheimer’s disease (AD)? [1:01:30]; If Matt could do a definitive study on life extension in dogs, with resources not being a concern, what does that experiment look like? [1:16:00]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#09 - David Sabatini, M.D., Ph.D.: rapamycin and the discovery of mTOR — the nexus of aging and longevity?

In this episode, my good friend David Sabatini delves into his extensive work with the mechanistic target of rapamycin—better known as mTOR—and rapamycin. The compound rapamycin is the only known pharmacological agent to extend lifespan all the way from yeast to mammals—across a billion years of evolution. David, a professor of biology and a member of the Whitehead Institute at MIT, shares his remarkable journey and discovery of mTOR in mammalian cells and its central role in nutrient sensing and longevity. Fasting, rapamycin, mTOR, autophagy, gedankenexperiments: having this conversation with David is like being the proverbial kid in the world’s greatest candy store. We discuss: mTOR and David’s student years [4:30]; Rapamycin and the discovery of mTOR [8:15]; The connection between rapamycin, mTOR, and longevity [30:30]; mTOR as the cell’s general contractor [34:45]; The effect of glucose, insulin, and amino acids on mTORC1 [42:50]; Methionine sensing and restriction [49:45]; An intermittent approach to rapamycin [54:30]; Rapamycin’s effects on cancer, cardiovascular disease, and neurodegeneration [57:00]; Gedankenexperiment: couch potatoes on rapamycin vs perfectly behaved humans [1:03:15]; David’s dream experiment with no resource constraints [1:07:00]; and More. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.


#03 - Ron Krauss, M.D.: a deep dive into heart disease

Whenever I’m stumped on a patient case or in my thinking about lipids, Ron is one of the first people I turn to for insight. Ron is recognized globally for his research into lipidology and has worn many hats in his career, including clinician, lipidologist, nutrition, genetics, and drug research. In this episode, we explore heart disease at its origins before diving into the highly discussed, largely misunderstood, role of LDL and inflammation in atherosclerosis. Ron also shares his insights on the evidence for and against statins and other lipid-lowering therapies. My hope is that both the curious patient and the physician can get a lot out of this episode by being more informed about dyslipidemia and the interventions used to reduce the risk of atherosclerotic disease. We covered a lot of ground on this critically important topic.   We discuss: The pathogenesis of atherosclerosis [7:00]; How early atherosclerosis begins [12:40]; Ron’s motivation for getting into lipidology [43:00]; How reading an article series in the NEJM in 1967 had a profound impact on him and his career [43:30]; How PCSK9 inhibitors work and why they may be under-utilized [47:00]; Mendelian randomization: nature’s randomized trial [49:15]; The “battle” between particle size and particle number [52:00]; The use of statins [1:04:45]; The role of chronic inflammation in atherosclerosis [1:24:15]; Why niacin may have been unjustly dismissed as a therapeutic option [1:40:45]; The HDL paradox: why drugs that raise HDL-C seem to raise (or have little impact on) heart disease risk [1:43:00]; Lp(a) [1:47:45]; And more. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram


#01 - Tim Ferriss: depression, psychedelics, and emotional resilience

Excited to kick off the podcast with special guest and close friend Tim Ferriss, lifehacker, podcaster extraordinaire, and author of multiple best-selling books that includes The 4-Hour Workweek, The 4-Hour Body, Tools of Titans, and Tribe of Mentors. In this podcast we cover mental health, depression, and our mutual interest in psychedelics as potential therapeutic agents. Tim talks both experientially and from his own deep dive into the literature of psychedelics and mental health. Tim is shifting his focus from investing in startups to funding experiments that he hopes will establish more reliable knowledge and therapeutic options for those suffering from anxiety, depression, and addiction. Tim also shared his list of acquired wisdom he returns to most reliably, which might be worth the price of admission alone.   We discuss: Tim’s history of depression and his TED Talk on his close call with suicide [11:15]; The type of thinking that triggers Tim’s downward spirals [17:15]; Tim’s transformative experience with ayahuasca [48:45]; How Tim’s experience and research has led him to focus on furthering the science on psychedelics and mental health [53:00]; What some of the meditation modalities, and meditation apps, are out there, why meditation can be so hard to do, but also worthwhile to stick with [1:13:00]; Why Tim made a big commitment (more than $1 million) to funding scientific research, and to psilocybin and MDMA research, in particular [1:31:00]; From all the habits and tools that Tim has learned, the five things that he returns to most reliably [2:33:00]; And more. Learn more at Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

The Peter Attia Drive Podcast


#45 - AMA #4: sleep, jet la...


In this “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) episode, the first subscriber-only edition, Peter answers a wide range of questions from readers and podcast listeners. Bob Kaplan, Peter’s head of research, asks the questions. As a reminder, AMAs are for subscribers only. ...