Extraordinary efforts are important. Part of expanding our understanding and our ability takes, almost by definition, extremely specific, diligent focus. While this may be an unpopular opinion, I believe that not all major problems require uber complicated solutions, or in the following case millions of dollars and teams of geniuses.
Arguably, the most listened to podcast on the planet, The Tim Ferriss Show, with millions of downloads each week recently featured three brilliant minds. Dr. Peter Attia, Dr. David Sabatini, and Dr. Navdeep Chandel beautifully shared their work on an episode recorded on Easter Island of all places. The long and short of it is, this trip marked the twenty year anniversary of the discovery of a compound called rapamycin on the island and the long process of studying it and it’s potential applications.
I’d like to preface these thoughts by noting the pandemic-like state of our ailing health in this country. As a world power, living like an average person in the United States will, most literally, kill you. We are developing and suffering from completely preventable chronic diseases that are not only killing us, they are costing us amounts of money and suffering that we can’t begin to comprehend. Naturally, I (and any sane person for that matter) would be a general proponent of our brightest minds continuing to leave no stone unturned to better understand our physiology and the world we live in to improve our lives. At the end of the day, you can’t justify forgoing an effort that could ease just one person’s pain or save a life.
That being said, I couldn’t help but find myself completely frustrated by what feels like a distraction. Rapamycin, for example, has interesting benefits regarding metabolism and potentially longevity. While more work needs to be done regarding dosing and proper application, data suggests diabetics, and even generally healthy people could expect some benefit from rapamycin. Of course, like any drug there are side effects. The main one has been described on the show as sores in the mouth and around the lips. Most accurately, the sores are described as the feeling of a cold sore consuming the entire inside of one’s mouth, which, if you ask me, sounds like one half of a hilarious game of “Would You Rather?”
I find myself in a tricky place commenting on this because these gentlemen have devoted their entire lives and more energy than most people will put into anything for rapamycin. In fact, the discovery of rapamycin is regarded as one of the most important contemporary scientific discoveries of our time. Furthermore, I’m not nearly educated enough to comprehend the level of brilliance these men have utilized to adapt these discoveries, but as a layman I must comment that it’s a bit funny that all this work has resulted in potentially a slight benefit in the treatment of type-II diabetes. Of course, they will suffer from massive, awkwardly painful mouth sores. Keep in mind, we already know the impact of nutrition and exercise can prevent and eradicate the entire condition all together and doesn’t require any PhDs, trips to a mysterious island, decades worth of work, or (more importantly) any mouth sores. Of course, we would rather depend on our geniuses and put up with disgusting mouth sores to treat diabetes, then avoid it all together with the ability to squat your bodyweight, run a sub-eight minute mile, and eat respectably.
REPEAT: Basic metrics like the ability to squat ass to grass with your bodyweight on a barbell, run a sub-eight minute mile, and nutritional choices that resemble anything but pure anarchy makes you diabetes worst nightmare.
Call me simple minded, but while we need minds like this to push the boundaries of science, I think much more can be done from a worldview that doesn’t seek the far reaching secret antidotes, but rather hunkers down into personal responsibility and common sense. This is like relying on developing a space program and flying to the moon for a chance of something half as effective as we could accomplish in our kitchen.
Dr. Attia, Dr. Sabatini, and Dr. Chandel, I thank you and commend you for your work endlessly. I just wish we gave you boys tougher challenges. I’m sorry.
PS – Frustratingly, none of the doctors responsible for the discovery and implementation of these compounds use them themselves.
Spend 20 minutes on tumbling…
Then, Every 2 minutes, 14 minutes complete the following for time:
7 Dumbbell Thrusters (50/30)
150’ Shuttle Run