Aging science expert Dr. David Sinclair’s supplement and drug stack includes NMN, resveratrol, metformin, spermidine, quercetin, fisetin, and more.
According to his Book Lifespan and Interviews, Sinclair’s Daily Supplement & Drug Stack is as Follows:
Harvard scientist Dr. David Sinclair is an established proponent of extending the average human lifespan. He once told The Harvard Gazette,
“Over the last 20 years, there have been a number of molecules that have been found to retard the aging process, at least in animals, and potentially a couple of drugs that are in humans. That made me optimistic that somebody who might make it to 150 has already been born.”
And like many other longevity enthusiasts who hope to extend their lifespan, Sinclair isn’t waiting for these age-retarding molecules to be tested in humans. With his knowledge of the latest aging research, the Harvard professor has put together his own supplement and drug regimen, which he believes will make him age more slowly.
Luckily, Sinclair isn’t shy about sharing the supplements and drugs he takes to achieve a longer life. As reported previously, he has divulged his anti-aging regimen in recent interviews and his book Lifespan. He does make it a point, however, not to endorse any specific brands. He also says that he does not give advice on which supplements to take.
The following describes each anti-aging supplement, or drugs (in the case of FDA-approved metformin, low-dose aspirin, and rapamycin) that Sinclair is known to currently take. When applicable, the list describes the most recent anti-aging research on that supplement or drug.
Sinclair takes 1g of NMN each morning. NMN is a nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) precursor, which restores the decline in NAD+ levels that occur with aging. Of the anti-aging compounds on the list, NMN is perhaps the most well-studied in humans.
Clinical trials have shown that NMN improves physical performance and sleep quality, strength and walking speed, insulin sensitivity, and skin aging, as well as cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and weight. This is in addition to the many animal studies showing NMN reverses aspects of age-related diseases, including cardiovascular disease and neurodegenerative disease.
Sinclair takes 1 gram of resveratrol each morning. Resveratrol is a plant-based chemical called a polyphenol, which activates longevity-associated sirtuin enzymes. Resveratrol can be found in grapes and therefore red wine. A recent study showed that resveratrol-enriched wine reverses aging in humans.
Animal studies have shown that resveratrol delays heart and skeletal muscle aging, promotes kidney health, boosts memory, delays ovarian aging, and reduces brain cell inflammation. Furthermore, both resveratrol and NMN have been shown to improve cognition by removing senescent cells. Additionally, resveratrol has a synergistic effect on combating liver aging when combined with the next compound on the list, metformin.
Sinclair takes 800 mg of metformin in the evening. Metformin is a prescription medication for type 2 diabetes. However, through its blood glucose-lowering effects and other mechanisms, it has been established as an anti-aging compound.
Animal studies have shown that metformin boosts immune function, protects against reproductive aging, limits the deterioration of multiple organs, prevents muscle atrophy when combined with leucine, reverses intestinal aging, prevents tendon degradation, and reduces fat in obesity.
Sinclair takes 1 mg of spermidine each morning. Spermidine naturally occurs in sperm but can be isolated from wheat germ. It also can be found in foods like cheese, soybeans, legumes, and mushrooms. The anti-aging effect of spermidine comes from its ability to induce autophagy — our cells’ waste disposal system.
Animal studies have shown that spermidine boosts blood flow and promotes cardiovascular health, enhances immunity against cancer, counters brain inflammation and anxiety, and slows liver aging.
Sinclair takes 500 mg of quercetin each morning. Quercetin is a polyphenol known to have senolytic activity, meaning that it removes senescent cells. Senescent cells are thought to drive the aging process by promoting chronic low-grade inflammation and NAD+ depletion.
In research studies, quercetin is usually combined with dasatinib — a chemotherapy drug used to treat leukemia. With limited aging-related studies examining quercetin or dasatinib individually, it is unclear whether combining the two is necessary. It is possible that quercetin alone has similar effects to dasatinib combined with quercetin (D+Q). More studies testing these compounds individually are needed to confirm this idea.
Animal studies have shown that D+Q enhances muscle regeneration, promotes bone regeneration, removes senescent cells in Alzheimer’s, improves heart function, counters muscle weakness, restores bone healing capacity, restores muscle building potential, increases the anti-aging protein klotho, improves memory, and lowers blood sugar levels.
Sinclair takes 500 mg of fisetin each morning. Like quercetin, fisetin is a polyphenol with senolytic properties. Animal studies have shown that fisetin alleviates cognitive dysfunction and brain inflammation, reduces depression-like behavior, shields the kidney from damage, increases muscle size and strength, and extends lifespan.
Sinclair ideally takes 4,000 to 5,000 IUs of vitamin D and 180 to 360 mcg of vitamin K per day, which are the recommended doses. Combining vitamin D3 with omega-3s and exercise is associated with a 60% lower risk of cancer in older adults. In mice, vitamin D3 was shown to activate sirtuin activity to slow colorectal cancer growth. Also in mice, vitamin D3 was shown to alleviate arthritis. Additionally, vitamin D3 and K2 work together to strengthen our bones.
Sinclair takes 83 mg of aspirin a day, which is associated with conflicting evidence on whether it lowers the risk of cardiovascular disease. However, in an interview, Sinclair said that he will continue taking aspirin until he is convinced by any such conflicting evidence. Additionally, low-dose aspirin is associated with reduced cancer risk.
Sinclair takes 500 to 1,000 mg of TMG a day. In an interview, Sinclair said he takes TMG because nicotinamide levels increase in response to NMN supplementation. When these high levels of nicotinamide are excreted through the kidneys, each nicotinamide molecule is methylated — when a chemical group called a methyl group is attached to a molecule. In turn, this depletes methyl groups from the body.
However, these methyl groups are needed for a “whole range of things,” including antioxidants. Therefore, Sinclair takes trimethylglycine to restore these methyl groups. He adds that he doesn’t know if TMG is necessary, as the body makes its own methyl groups. Since TMG is safe and inexpensive, he just takes it as a precaution.
At this years Abundance360 Summit in March, Sinclair was interviewed by longevity advocate Dr. Peter Diamadis who asked Sinclair if he takes rapamycin. Sinclair responded with, “On and off, yes,” but did not mention a dose. Diamadis went on to say that he takes 6 mg of rapamycin once a week. This is likely because it’s thought that higher doses (more than 2 mg) of rapamycin taken cyclically may result in longevity benefits.
Rapamycin was discovered on Easter Island (a.k.a. Rapa Nui) inside of a volcano. It modulates the immune system and is prescribed as an immunosuppresent to prevent kidney transplant rejection. However, it has also been shown to enhance the immune systems response to the flu. Rapamycin is an inhibitor of mTOR (mechanistic/mammalian target of rapamycin). mTOR is a nutrient sensing molecule in our cells that promotes growth in response the intake of high levels of nutrients, especially protein.
While rapamycin increases the lifespan of animals more than any other compound yet tested, if taken too early in life it can stunt growth and development. Additionally, other animal studies have shown that rapamycin reverses hair graying, prevents muscle weakness, improves gut health, inhibits bone loss, improves reproductive health, and mitigates cognitive impairment.
While Dr. Sinclair is an expert in longevity science, this does not necessarily indicate that what he does will slow his own aging. As stated above, most of the compounds on the list, including metformin have not been tested on humans for their anti-aging benefits. Therefore, evidence is lacking on whether they will work. Still, there are a handful of studies showing that NMN has anti-aging benefits for older individuals. Additionally, adequate levels of vitamin D and K are always recommended.