Notes from Invest Like the Best Podcast: Peter Attia M.D.


About Peter:

Shifting your longevity function which is a function of lifespan and healthspan up and to the right.


  • Lifespan or not dying is about delaying the onset of the 3 largest killers of those 40+

  1. Cancer
  2. Atherosclerotic disease
  3. Neurodegenerative disease
Disease is #1 killer and 80% of them are listed above. The next biggest killer is accidents.
  • Healthspan is about preserving 3 elements of life

  1. Brain function
    •  Executive Function
    • Processing Speed
    • Short Term Memory
  1. Body
    • Muscle mass: metabolic benefit and orthopedic benefit
    • Functional movement with strength and flexibility
    • Freedom from pain
  2. Spirit: Support network and sense of purpose
  • What has science taught us about improving lifespan?

  1. Centenarians studies (notably done at Albert Einsteins in NYC)
    • Long lifespans are attributable to genetics not behavior. Genes code for proteins and centenarians carry more proteins that are associated with protection from the the above disease categories which kill most of us.
  1. Studies on 4 categories of animals.  Generally, observations which improve healthspan across all 4 groups are most interesting since they span millions of years of evolution.
    • Yeast
    • Flies
    • Worms
    • Mammals
  • What has worked across the board to extend life?
    1. Caloric restriction
      • Tactic: Calorie Restriction Memetics –> Intermittent Fasting
        •  This works because repair begins long after the last meal is digested. Autophagy is the process by which cells decide which cells to starve off in the name of efficiency, an artifact of the fact that our evolutionary history characterized by stretches of relative feast or famine. Since we have no metabolic signature for autophagy and cannot track the protein contents of our cells. This is why nobody knows which intermittent fast schedule is optimal.
    2. Rapamycin
      • It inhibits the protein mTor which regulates cellular metabolism, growth, and proliferation. There are analogs for these proteins across all 4 categories of animals
  • History of nutrition research

On the subject of obesity, the WWII era German scientists were making great progress on nutrition. In the wake of WWII propaganda German science was considered ‘tainted’ and the baby was thrown out with the bathwater as what is now revealing itself to have been good science was ignored and detoured us into the fallacy of all calories being equal (maybe not from a nutrient POV but surely from a fat storing POV).
  • Importance of muscle mass for insulin disposal

Muscle mass is important for glucose disposal since muscles have a much larger capacity to store glucose than the liver,  which are the only places glucose can be stored very quickly. An oral glucose tolerance test can measure how quickly our bodies can dispose of excess glucose which is important. However the body’s method of doing this is to use lots of insulin, this is not constructive. Your muscular reservoir is how you dispose of spikes in glucose without excessive insulin which casts doubt on the mainstream obsession of burning calories. We can control what we eat (the input) and control the muscle mass (the output). Continuous glucose monitors measure your average blood glucose and standard deviation which taken together may be the best estimate for how much insulin has been released in our blood over time.
  • Metabolic impact of food more crucial than caloric balance

Change in fat levels depends on the difference in energy we consume (food) vs expend. But while calories matter, the metabolic impact of food matters more. Some food will cause more insulin to be produced and some food will (double whammy) cause your cells to be more insulin resistant. While we understand that insulin is the hormone which disposes of glucose by using it to promote cell growth, we need to focus on what causes people to grow which are made of billions of cells.

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