Joe Rogan Experience #502 with Dr. Rhonda Patrick: Summary of Podcast Pt.3

1:59:54 – Biology is very complex. Simplification of complicated mechanisms can occasionally lead to misunderstanding.


2:07:38 – Dr. Patrick lists some of the supplements she takes. She takes a vitamin B complex from Swanson Brand. She takes omega-3 from Nordic Naturals.

2:10:29 – You can take too much vitamin D. Dr. Patrick has observed the toxicity levels of vitamin D to be 10,000IU a day.

Omega-3s: EPA, DHA, ALA

2:10:55 – Dr. Patrick explains omega-3s. There are 3: EPA, DHA, and ALA (flax seed, walnuts). ALA can be converted into EPA (inefficient conversion at about 5%). If you are getting all of your omega-3 from foods where it is in the form of ALA, then you are not getting the right amount of EPA because only 5% of it can be converted. If you are vegetarian, Patrick recommends micro algae oil because micro algae produces the omega-3s that the fish consume.

2:13:20 – Rogan takes 10 omega-3 pills and Patrick takes 6.

2:15:12 – Mechanism for anti-inflammation and where omega-3 fits in. EPA inhibits the arachidonic acid pathway which produces prostaglandins. Basically these prostaglandins are responsible for inflammation. 2g of EPA can reduce the C-reactive protein levels significantly, which lowers inflammation. 

2:17:43 – omega-3s are polyunsaturated and are thus prone to oxidation. Keep them in the fridge. Check if the fat has become rancid by occasionally cutting a pill and smelling the contents. Consuming rancid fats can be bad.

2:21:45 – In addition to the anti-inflammatory benefits of EPA and the phospholipid bilayer benefits of DHA, they also bind to DNA regions and activate them. Much like vitamin D, EPA and DHA turns on parts of the DNA. This was brought up by an attempt to understand what benefits krill oil has over fish oil – no consensus has been reached.

2:27:29 – Resources that Dr. Patrick uses to get information on different supplements. She recommends the Linus Pauling Institute. They provide balanced reviews on a variety of supplemental vitamins, minerals, and essential fats.

2:28:12 – If you are unsure of what you need, Dr. Patrick recommends WellnessFx as a place where you can get your blood work done and get an understanding of what you are missing.

2:30:28 – A new frame of mind that Patrick believes the medical world will soon hold in higher regard. The frame of knowing how important nutrition is to overall health.

Stem Cells

2:33:31 – Dr. Patrick discusses a story about wisdom teeth and a surprising discovery. After some research, she discovers that there are dental pulp stem cells that can be isolated after a wisdom tooth operation. In a study, stem cells were taken out of people and put into mice with damaged motor neurons and the stem cells were able to differentiate into neurons and thus repaired the damage. Dental pulp stem cells can also be found in large quantities in children’s primary teeth. [fascinating]

2:36:16 – Pluripotent stem cells. We can take skin cells and add four different genes via virus and the skin cells can change into pluripotent stem cells, which means they can become any kind of cell.


2:36:58 – Blood of young mice being transferred into old mice. Dr. Patrick hasn’t heard about the transfer of blood, but is aware of experiments involving the transfer of bone marrow (from younger mice) which was shown to extend the life of mice.


2:38:26 – Epigenetics. Dr. Patrick says that as of now we can predict the age of someone just by looking at the methylation of DNA (the markers placed there by environmental factors, which determine which sections of DNA are active). There were patterns in methylation that have been found and these patterns provide a way to predict with 96% accuracy the age of the person (plus or minus 4 years).

2:40:02 – Epigenetics continued. Studies have looked at DNA from cancerous cells and DNA from regular cells from the same subject and have found interesting results. They find the “cancer cell ages by 40% based on the pattern of methylation” [I assume she is referring to cancer cells aging 40% faster because the methylation patterns partially dictate that growth]. Another interesting point she mentions is that the methyl groups affix themselves to parts of the sequence in charge of DNA repair, mitocondrial metabolism, and anti-oxidation.

Stem Cells (continued)

2:40:45 – Yet another interesting point regarding stem cells and methylation of DNA. We are getting close to programming youth in our cells. She provides the example of methylation in stem cells; there are patterns in methylation within the stem cells that are unique. Stem cells have this pattern for a reason. Cell division is one such product of a certain pattern unique to stem cells, it exists because you want your stem cells to keep dividing because they are repopulating the tissue. They found that a certain gene responsible for stopping cell division is methylated (methylation on a section means that section is inactive) in young people’s stem cells but then this gene is demethylated later in life and then the stem cells stop dividing and can no longer repopulate tissue. The pathway that activates the thing that takes off the methyl group (rendering this particular cell’s ability to divide ineffective) is something called NF-kB, which is a pro-inflammatory pathway. Inflammation in general causes a whole cascade of demethylation. [these are very profound points on how the environment regulates epigenetics and thus regulates aging]

Parabiosis (continued)

2:46:46 – Patrick believes that the methylation patterns can explain why a blood transplant from a young mouse into an old mouse would revitalize the old mouse. The methylation patterns are that of a younger subject’s cell and the epigenetic effects of certain (future) environments have yet to change the DNA methylation in the cell of the younger mouse.



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