Joe Rogan Experience #1054 with Dr. Rhonda Patrick: Summary of Podcast Pt.1

:30 – Dr. Patrick and Joe discuss how having a kid changed their lives.

Child Brain Development

3:11 – What Dr. Patrick did to ensure that the child’s brain developed properly in the womb. Folate, magnesium, zinc, iron, vitamin D and DHA are some of the nutrients that she listed. 1% of fish’s DHA is in phospholipid form. In fish eggs (the roe), 40-70% of the DHA is in phospholipid form. The phospholipid form of DHA has been shown to be 10 times more effective at reaching the fetus. The phospholipid form of DHA has been shown to be taken up into the brain far more effectively than the non-phospholipid form. Dr. Patrick bought salmon roe in bulk from a company called Vital Choice. She adds avocado for the extra essential fat.


11:38 – Epigenetics. There was a study in 2015 where sperm was collected from males who were obese and males who were lean. There was a difference in the activation of about 300 different genes, many of these genes are responsible for cognition, learning/memory, and metabolism. After the obese males underwent bariatric surgery, the sperm was collected again some time after the surgery, the obese men’s DNA looked more like the lean men’s possibly as a result of the weight loss. The point of this study is to expresses the significance that the environment and habits play on the genetic material you pass on.

Breast Feeding

17:40 – Benefits of breast feeding. A few generations back, many people would dismiss the benefits because not much was known at the time. There is a compound in human breast milk called human milk oligosaccharides; there are about 200 different HMOs; it is the 3rd most common compound found in breast milk after lactose and fat. These HMOs cannot be digested by the infant’s digestive system, they are seemingly designed to be digested by the bacteria in the gut. The only service these HMOs serve, seems to be to feed and populate the infant gut with beneficial bacteria. This bacteria has been shown to support the immune system. The bacteria digest HMOs and in the process produce short chain fatty acids like lactate, butyrate, and acetate which act as signaling molecules for the immune system. These signaling molecules determine what kind of immune cells the body will make; a big one is t regulatory cells (immune cells that prevent autoimmunity). Children who are not breast fed lack around 4 different species of gut bacteria and suffer a 3 fold increase risk of allergies and autoimmune related diseases. On top of all of this, HMOs break down biofilm (pathogenic bacteria’s defense against anti-microbial activity); once the biofilm is broken lauric acid found in breast milk (and coconut oil) can kill off pathogenic bacteria. Yet another interesting thing about breast milk: it contains mammary stem cells. These stem cells get digested and make their way to the kidneys, the liver, and the brain.

Postpartum Depression

28:57 – Postpartum depression. During pregnancy, the estrogen levels go through the roof; about a 100 fold increase. Estrogen has been shown to increase the activity of a gene called tryptophan hydroxylase-2 which produces serotonin in the brain from tryptophan. So there is a constant serotonin production. After childbirth, these estrogen levels go down and the serotonin production goes down with it. This is the theory proposed by Dr. Patrick. Another theory is circadian rhythm disruption. Exercise can help get tryptophan into the brain as competing branched chain amino acids go elsewhere in the body. Exercise also increases the amount of BDNF in the brain, creating new neurons and preventing depression.

36:31 – APEO4 gene. People with at least one allele of this gene have a 2-5 fold increased risk of CTE after a traumatic brain injury. People with two copies of this gene (far less common) suffer a 10-20 fold increased risk.


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