rhonda patrick

Joe Rogan Experience #773 – Dr. Rhonda Patrick

Sponsors: Squarespace (code: Joe), Legalzoom, MeundiesOnnit (code: Rogan)

Find Rhonda Patrick at: Foundmyfitness.com, @foundmyfitness

  • Cold Showers: Increase the norepinephrine in your brain,
    • Similarly, High Intensity workouts produce lactate which is taken up by the brain to make the norepinephrine in the brain
    • This strengthens connections between neurons in the brain to help you learn and remember better
    • This is a great and immediate effect
  • Aerobic exercise: Increase brain neutropic growth factor, making more neurons which take 2 weeks to mature, so those benefits are more longer term
  • Exercise is not actually that is good for your body, what is good is your body’s response to the stress (this is good stress)
  • Smart people who don’t connect with exercise don’t realize what they are missing and the benefits for anti-anxiety
  • The more fit you are and the better you eat, the better you will age
  • Starting at 40, humans start to lose muscle mass and it is far too hard to regain it once you are older
    • Muscle is important when you age to avoid falling/breaking hips which is very dangerous when older
    • Resistance training releases Irisin and osteocalcin that plays a role in maintaining bone density
      • Most of our stored calcium is stored in our bone
      • 38% of Americans don’t get enough calcium
      • Calcium is also needed in the blood for endothelial cells, and when you need more it pulls it out of your bone leading to osteoporosis (also not exercising enough and Vitamin K and K2 from fermented foods)
        • Fermented Foods: Try Nato for tons of K2 and spermidine which helps clear away damaged cells/senescent which then discrete inflammatory cytokines
          • Spermidine activates Atophagy (“eating away”) so your cells eat up the senescent cells
          • Recent study in mice with CRISPR to remove all senescent cells right away and they lived 30% longer
          • Resveratrol also does this, it is a natural fungicide from plants, found in skins of grape
            • Activates SIRT1 pathway that does good things and deactivates bad ones
            • A lot of the research wasn’t great in the past, especially about Heart Health
            • Not an antioxidant or vitamin E that can blunt the benefits of exercise by reducing inflammation
            • These are actually pro-inflammatory of the good things to trigger in your body
            • Be careful as lots of supplements are junk and have lots of filler in them
          • NSAIDS: Now have a label for a heart risk, they go after COX2 (like Vioxx, Celebrex) inflammation which reduces pain, but this also increases platelet aggregation which could be bad if you have plaques
            • This can also blunt the gains from exercise and increases the risk of stroke/heart attack
            • Reserve from really significant needs, not more than once a month
            • Ibprofen isn’t as bad, but also not good
            • Seems to be used a lot by women for menstrual pain, but it’s better to just deal with the pain or take something else like Circumin (Meriva)
          • Plant Antifedence (Indian textbook): 900 compounds in various plants with potential hormedic (read: hormone) responses in the body
            • Plumage in Black walnuts protect against ischemic stroke
          • Broccoli/Brussles/etc can help cancer cells from developing when raw, even more in broccoli sprouts (good for salads, not smoothies)
            • Also good for the brain and help with autism
          • Garlic: Allicin created only once you chop the garlic and leave it for 5-7 minutes not whole cloves
            • Good anti-biotic properties
            • Rhonda ate tons of garlic and garlic oil pills when she had a bad infection/MRSA
            • Mercaptans bind mercury and brain antioxidants
            • Recent study showed 80% decrease of plagues in arteries from Alasin
          • Circumin: Not very bioavailable, gets killed by your stomach acid
            • From Tumeric plant
            • Great anti-inflammatory
            • Formulation in a phytosone is much more bioavailable
            • Buy Meriva, 1 gr/day
              • Pain relief shown as comparable to Advil/Tylenol
            • Fasting: Turn on stress genes and lots of good things
          • Grey Hair Example: One of your melanocytes which creates the pigment for your hair will go senescent, release bad things and do the same to cells nearby and that is why you get a clump of grey hair around that first hair
          • Nicotine: Does have one good, it helps with sensory gating to focus on one sound/sight etc.
            • Sensory gating problems are common in schizophrenics
            • You can get it other places, NOT from cigarettes
          • In general, eat all sort of plants to get lots of good things like Apple skin
            • Release something that inhibits ATF4 in skeletal muscle that lets you increase muscle growth
            • This is available as a nutraceutical
          • Anything that is Hormetic (e.g. hormone related), the DOSE matters a LOT and too much can be dangerous
            • Fasting, exercise, plant compounds, etc.
            • U-shaped curve so it’s good when you get enough, then too much it gets bad
          • Getting drugs externally vs. triggering your body to make it itself:
            • Your brain/body stops making as much of what you are taking externally or reduced the number of receptors for it over time and then if you stop you can have withdrawal (e.g. opioid tolerance, testosterone shots)
              • Opioids bind the the Mu Opioid receptor to make you feel good short term
              • Kappa Opioid Receptor: Opposite of the Mu Opioid Receptor
                • Dynorphin binds here and is made to cool your body when you are uncomfortable
                  • Hot Yoga: Body releases dinorphin to cool the itself and makes you feel incredible (hot yoga has not been studied, but if you are sweating and uncomfortable then it’s probably
                  • Rhonda’s found it makes her better able to handle stressful situations, this impacts the brain
                • Then your body actually makes more Mu Opioid receptors and make them more sensitive to feeling good and it is durable
                • Certain drugs, sauna and other things that activate Kappa Op. Receptor are used to treat opioid addiction
              • But if you induce your body to make something, then your brain/body is the one making more of something and won’t have the feedback mechanism
              • Dark chocolate does this to help your body release anti-oxidants, isn’t an anti-oxidant itself
            • Lazy people try to avoid discomfort, but it is this discomfort that can make you stronger and happier
            • Rhonda would love to know what happens from hot yoga/sauna right into ice bath/cryotherapy
              • Rhonda did start to get light headed when trying this, but will look into the literature, but doesn’t seem to be much
              • Rhonda found that it did reset her circadian rhythm
                • Sauna might keep you up, but also increase lucid dreaming (maybe from release of acetylcholine)
                • Cold more likely to work with melatonin and help with sleep
              • Rhonda did a study with blueberries which have contain a plant insecticide that binds to NRF2 gene that is inflammatory
                • Testing blood from obese people and are pre-diabetic
                • 50% get freeze dried blueberry powder drink and 50% placebo
                • Look at damage to the DNA and inflammation
                • DNA damage leads to increased risk of cancer
              • Being overweight is not good, EVER. PERIOD. It increases your risk for every chronic disease, there isn’t a healthy obese type person
                • 7-14 lower lifespan
                • The Telegraph article on health obese people is bullshit, period.
                • This isn’t fat shaming, this is just the reality and unhealthy
              • Sugar
                • When you eat refined sugars and then take it away, the fructose is only metabolized in the liver, trapping ATP, that sends a message to your brain that makes your brain think you haven’t been
                  • High Fructose Corn Syrup is worse, as it is all Fructose
                  • It is an irritant to your gut and way more ATP trapping
                • Totally different with sugar in fruit when eating with the fiber, etc.
                • Average 5 year old has 50g of sugar a day = their whole body weight in a year
                • Pumpkin spike latte at Starbucks has over 60 grams of sugar
                • Gut bacteria like fiber, by eating low fiber leads them to starve and start eating your gut bacteria instead
                  • Certain bacteria (Candida Bacteria) can thrive with low fiber and swim up to small intestine to eat the sugar you are eating (bacterial overgrowth)
                  • When this happens, it release Zonulin, opens the barriers in gt barrier (so does gluten) leading to bloating/inflammation
                  • Aim for lots of varieties of fiber/plants
                • Refined sugar shown to increase breast cancer drug growth by 40%
                • Quitting sugar, the first week is really hard, you’ll get detox headaches and it is really hard to succeed
                  • “Just trying to eat healthy” is not going to work to overcome this
                • Lara Bars and other health bars are full of sugar and just Candy Bars, even “paleo” bars do
                • Primal Kitchen nut/honey bar and Quest Bars might be the only ones not full of sugar
              • People just don’t recognize just how much what you eat impacts your body is such profound ways
              • Just eat whole foods, fruits, veggies are just the way to go, and they are delicious
                • Fresh fruit is a great dessert, you don’t need to have cake/pie

23andme to test genes and how you might metabolize things differently

Rhonda has a free tool to analyze your data to understand what polymorphisms related to food you have: Foundmyfitness.com/genetics (you can also try Promethease to understand other info, $5)

CRISPR: A way to go and fix a gene that will lead to bad things and replace with right version, very targeted (refer to Radiolab podcast)


  • 2 different types, one is deck down b/c you can’t breathe in the liquid nitrogen below, full on ones super cool the air itself and you can breathe it in
    • Women want the cold on their face to help with collagen (cryofacial), but you need to be very careful which kind you are doing, can even help with arthritis
  • Cryotherapy and cold exposure can increase norepinephrine and inhibit TNF-alpha (which usually wakes up your immune cells to attach an infection, which you don’t want)
  • Lots of other positive hermetic (hormone driven) benefits – expression of glutathione related enzymes that your body needs to actually use glutathione (without these, taking more glutathione won’t actually work), but took 10-20 sessions
  • You can’t do a double blinded placebo trial, you’re going to know if you’re cold or not…
  • Thermogenesis: Cold brings your body to make heat in some ways (can shiver), your body quick adapts and the norepinephrine causes mitochondria to wake up from gene expression of UCP-1 and ramps up fat metabolism and makes more mitochondria in your fat cells = “brown fat”
    • Looks brown b/c of the extra mitochondria
    • So you are making heat and burning fat at the same time
    • Allows you to tolerate the cold for more time
    • Men say a 38% increase in brown fat from being exposed to 50 degrees for 10 days in a row
    • Lots of pills in development to try build brown fat via thermogenesis
    • Fish oil actually seen to show some of this
      • The plant version: alpha-linolenic acid isn’t quite the same (used by vegans)
        • Men in particular, can’t convert this to enough other forms vs. women
        • People need 33.5% more of it to get same impact as fish oil
        • Vegetarians/Vegans are often deficient in B12 (myelin and neurotransmitters) and Iron (blood, myelin in the brain, neurotransmitter creation) and often Vitamin A
          • Iron is 1.8x less bioavailable in plants vs. meat – so much harder to get that – Vitamin C dramatically helps with this bioavailability if taken together
          • You can get supplements for B12, and Iron
            • You also don’t want too much Iron from supplements which creates lots of problems
          • Omega 3
          • Vitamin D is low in most people, so most people need this too (more needed with age) – go for Vitamin D3 (from lanolin), but also is a Lichen based version
        • Association (not cause) seen between low B12/iron and low IQ then testing in 1,000 children over time showed those at had meat grew more, more muscle, better in reading/writing and maybe more traits of leadership
        • Saturated fats alone are NOT necessarily bad for you (unless you have some specific polymorphisms that can’t get them out of your blood)
          • The real problem is the combo with sugar. The negative effects show up when you already have inflammation from eating too much sugar (Ron Krauss)
            • And not eating veggies and not exercising
          • Small dense LDL (the real bad kind), only made when you have high fat AND the high sugar
          • LDL is good in general and you need it for damage repair in your body
          • Even lean red meat isn’t that high in saturated fat relative to milk
          • Eating cholesterol has pretty much NO effect on your body’s LDL levels (e.g. eating eggs)
          • But, STRESS has a huge impact when you release endotoxin and your body releases cholesterol to soak up the endotoxin
        • Blunting of strength training?
          • Exercise and cold are both hermetic stresses, so if you do cold right after exercise as the cold could cause anti-inflammatory effects too soon to get the benefit (same would apply to taking Advil)
          • If you wait an hour or more, this might not be the case and could still help
        • Cold water vs. Cryotherapy
          • Water is much better at extracting heat from the body, but it is a higher temp vs. cryotherapy
          • You can stay in cold water much longer than cryotherapy
  • Rhonda used to have frequent night terrors, she even injured herself and broke things (still occurs every few months)
  • Newest Tesla’s now driven themselves on the highway, as long as the road is in decent shape
    • People are bad drivers, Rhonda can’t wait for self-driving cars
  • The increased density of the city, there is a direct correlation to how fast you walk and talk
  • Rhonda has killed a lot of mice in her cancer research days to harvest livers
    • Hard at first, but go easier/used to it over time
    • Over a long break, going back to it and it was really hard again
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