#102 - Michael Osterholm, Ph.D.: COVID-19—Lessons learned, challenges ahead, and reasons for optimism and concern
In this episode, Michael Osterholm, Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota and author of Deadliest Enemy: Our War Against Killer Germs, provides an overview on the COVID-19 pandemic in regards to what has happened to date, what we’ve learned about how the disease spreads, and his optimism and pessimism about what potentially lies ahead. Michael gives his take on the true case fatality rate, why it differs around the world, and which underlying conditions, such as obesity, impact risk of severe illness and death. We also discuss the outlook regarding vaccines, repurposed drugs/antivirals for treatment, and Michael’s growing concern about supply chain limitations with respect to drugs, vaccines, n95 masks, and testing kits. We discuss: Recapping the brief history of COVID-19 and what potentially lies ahead [2:15]; Some positive news about immunity and reinfection [10:45]; Case fatality rate—The challenge in finding the true rate, difference by country, and the impact of age, underlying conditions, and obesity [13:00]; What has to be true for less than 100,000 Americans to die from COVID-19? [24:30]; How do we best protect healthcare workers? [29:45]; Concerns about testing capability—Reagent shortfall and a supply chain problem [39:30]; Vaccines and antivirals—The outlook, timing, and challenges [47:45]; Long term health of survivors of COVID-19 [56:45]; The impact of comorbidities—Diabetes, obesity, and immunosuppressed patients [59:30]; Understanding R0 and how the disease spreads [1:01:30]; The challenge of forecasting with so many unknown [1:08:00]; What explains the difference in cases and fatalities in different parts of the world? [1:14:30]; Repurposed drugs/antivirals being considered for treatment options—any optimism? [1:16:45]; A parting message from Michael about what lies ahead [1:18:30]; and More. Learn more: .
#101 - Ryan Holiday: Finding stillness amidst chaos
Ryan Holiday, bestselling author and author of Daily Stoic, discusses practical ways to find stillness and apply the insights of stoic philosophy in the midst of COVID-19 chaos . Ryan discusses the importance of taking back a feeling of control, the benefits of structure and routine, and the idea of being prepared for anything. We discuss: Using times of adversity to evaluate and reflect how you’ve set up and prioritized your life [2:30]; What insights might the famous stoics provide amidst this COVID-19 pandemic? [8:15]; The possible consequences of the socially isolating nature of a pandemic (and why we need good leaders) [13:00]; Stoicism—what it means and how to apply it [18:45]; Lessons taken from the life of Winston Churchill—stillness, structure, routine, hobbies, empathy, forward thinking, and more [23:30]; Alive time vs. dead time—taking control of your time and making it count [38:45]; Auditing how the world (and its leaders) are handling the COVID-19 pandemic through the lens of stoic philosophy [44:15]; Asserting control and using routine to find stillness in an environment not conducive for it [52:15]; Why you should find a way to exercise, especially now [58:30]; How to find purpose during this time—goal setting, having a project to work on, and the benefits of keeping a journal [1:02:00]; What is Ryan most optimistic about and what is he most concerned about over the next few months? [1:08:45]; How can you follow Ryan’s work and messages about stoicism and stillness? [1:17:45]. And more. Learn more: .
#100 - Sam Harris, Ph.D.: COVID-19—Comprehending the crisis and managing our emotions
In this episode, Sam Harris, neuroscientist, author, and host of the Making Sense Podcast, joins Peter to discuss this unprecedented coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. The discussion includes the important distinction between COVID-19 and influenza, the impact on the economy, the dire situation in New York, and the challenge of creating a safe and effective vaccine. Additionally, Sam brings insights from his extensive meditation practice to help those struggling with stress, anxiety, and fear in this extraordinary situation. We discuss: A time unlike any other—why many people don’t seem to fully grasp the magnitude of this situation [2:00]; Why comparing COVID-19 to influenza is a bad analogy [10:45] The impact on the economy of measures like shelter-in-place—Is the “cure” worse than the disease? [16:45]; Why are some places, like New York, getting hit so much worse? [24:45]; The trickle down effect of an overrun healthcare system on non-COVID-19 related health issues [34:45]; How to calm our minds and manage our emotions during this craziness [38:00]; Talking to kids about this situation without burdening them with undue stress [50:15]; Insights from meditation practice—Recognize and unhook yourself from a heightened emotional state [52:00]; How to make the most of a situation where you let your emotions get the best of you [59:15]; What are some potential positive things that Sam hopes could be learned from this crisis and applied to the future? [1:09:30]; The unfortunate politics being layered on top of this crisis [1:15:30]; The challenge of creating a safe and effective vaccine for COVID-19 [1:20:00]; and More. Learn more: .
#99 - Peter Hotez, M.D., Ph.D.: Continuing the conversation on COVID-19
In this episode, Dr. Peter Hotez M.D., Ph.D., Dean for the National School of Tropical Medicine Baylor College of Medicine, returns to continue the conversation on COVID-19. Dr. Hotez informs us on how we can gauge the number of infected people, behaviors to reduce the probability of becoming infected, and the inconsistency of hospitalizations among young adults between different countries. Dr. Hotez underscores the continued uncertainty in many virus-related developments, but ends with some points of optimism. Disclaimer: This is information accurate as of March 19, 2020, when it was recorded. We discuss: How to gauge true number of infected people [5:45] Reducing the probability of getting infected [22:45] Inconsistency by country in infected young people [27:15] Conferred immunity, seasonality, and repurposed therapeutics [30:30] Vaccine development [39:30] Practical behaviors to reduce risk of transmission [46:00] Mental Health resource and funding [51:00] Points of optimism [56:00]; and More. Learn more: .
The Peter Attia Drive will feature guests and experts that will offer advice and insight to help you optimize performance, health, longevity, critical thinking, and life. It’s hosted by Stanford M.D., TED speaker, and longevity expert Dr. Peter Attia, founder of Attia Medical, PC, a medical practice with offices in San Diego and New York City.
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