Episode 52 |

Planning for Longevity and Optimal Health with Dr. Daniel Kraft

The best step that you can take to live a long and healthy life is to be proactive in stopping disease before it starts. Dr. Daniel Kraft explains how to live a healthy life, and the new therapies that are becoming available in the event that something does go wrong.

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This Week’s Guest:

Dr. Daniel Kraft is a Stanford and Harvard-trained physician, scientist, and inventor. He’s the faculty chair for medicine and neuroscience at Singularity University, and the founder of the Exponential Medicine Annual Conference. He’s the founder of IntelliMedicine, RegenMed Systems, and the inventor of MarrowMiner. You can find Daniel on Twitter @Daniel_Kraft.


Medicine and healthcare is transforming, and is becoming more proactive. Instead of waiting to fall ill, we can take preventative steps to halt diseases before they start, and lessen our chances of needing aggressive treatments. Dr. Daniel Kraft discusses how to plan for a long and healthy life, and the new and exciting types of therapies that are becoming available.
We discuss:

  • How the healthcare field is changing.
  • The new and exciting treatments that are becoming available.
  • The best apps and tools to use for health.
  • How hospice and home healthcare is evolving.

Here’s what I learned:

The Future of Health and Medicine

  1. We are currently in more of a “sick care” system than in a healthcare system.
    • We wait for the disease to happen, and part of the future of health and medicine is to be more proactive in catching and preventing diseases early.
  2. We can now start to capture on a minute-by-minute basis elements of our health and our behaviors.
  3. Technology can give us basic insights into our activity levels, heart rate, the core elements of our sleep, etc.
    • The key is to make this information useful and gain insights and actionable elements from this data, so you can start to change your habits and improve your health.

Apps and Tools for Health

  1. There’s over 60,000 health and medical related apps.
    • The challenge is, a lot of them are sort of one-size fits all.
  2. One of Daniel’s favorites is Lark, which is an AI chat bot for health and nutrition.
    • It tracks your steps and diet through your phone, and your sleep from when you put your phone down at night and pick it up in the morning.
  3. Daniel also uses a Withings wrist watch, which looks like a regular watch but also tracks steps and sleep.
  4. He has a kinetic scale that also tracks percentage body fat and muscle mass.

Stress Reduction

  1. You measure in different ways.
    • Sometimes, stress is adaptive, and you need a little bit to get you through a project or a deadline.
    • Other times, it becomes too much and you need to lower your stress levels.
    • You have to learn to manage it in smart ways that empower you, so that it doesn’t become overwhelming.
  2. Yoga and basic mindfulness practices can dramatically impact your stress levels.
  3. Some large companies are adapting mindfulness training to get people more in sync.
  4. An app called Moodies can listen to your voice to track your emotional stress level, and coach you to handle stress.

Chemotherapy and Radiation as a Cancer Treatment

  1. Daniel trained as a pediatric hematologist and oncologist with a focus on bone marrow transplantation.
  2. There are many significant toxic side effects to traditional chemotherapy drugs, such as hair loss, or a risk to other organs.
  3. Some doctors are working on moving into precision oncology, where every tumor will be sequenced, and then can be addressed with targeted drugs.
  4. There are many new and exciting medications coming in the market that function in the realm of immunotherapy, that will amplify the patient’s own immune system to attack cancer.
  5. They will be looking at circulating DNA in the patient, not a tissue biopsy but a blood biopsy, and that will hopefully develop faster and more specific therapies.
  6. The idea of gene therapy is also coming to reality with CRISPR, which can insert new genes and replace them for treating cancer, or for genetic diseases.

Banking Our Stem Cells

  1. In terms of banking your own stem cells, you have different forms.
  2. There is bone marrow stem cells, which you can harvest with a needle and can be used for saving a matched sibling or someone who needs a bone marrow transplant.
  3. You can take a skin cell and turn into the equivalent of your own embryonic stem cell line and can turn it into a cell such as a beating heart cell.
  4. They can’t yet inject those into your heart, but in the future may be able to use as heart patches and liver cells.

Evolved Hospice

  1. End-of-life care is so critical, and we spend a good percentage of our healthcare budget on that last month of life.
  2. Many people don’t want to die in an intensive care unit, and should be prepared.
  3. The first step is awareness-make your end-of-life wishes known, so if you can’t communicate, there is no question.
  4. Secondly, we can provide hospital-based technologies into the home environment, so people are comfortable but are still provided pain relief and medical care.
  5. In the last months of life, people can be much more calm, connected, and less anxious.

Links and Resources Mentioned

Singularity University
Exponential Medicine Annual Conference
RegenMed Systems
X Prize Foundation
Zeo Personal Sleep Manager
Healbe GoBe
Omada Health
Lark app
Wii Fit
Lumo Lift
The White House Cancer Moonshot Summit
Simplified Genetics
19 Labs
Exponential Medicine
The Global Summit
Daniel on Twitter

Get Optimized!

  1. Find ways to get into the “flow”. Meditation or activities that require focus are great ways to become fully immersed in what you are doing.
  2. Other people matter. Humans are social and crave relationships, so meet new people often and keep those that you care about close to you.
  3. Take Mark’s Quiz for your evaluation on PERMA and to receive personalized tips on how to increase your own happiness and your well-being score.

Thank you for listening!
As always, thank you for tuning in. Please feel free to contact me or leave a comment. If you enjoyed this episode, please share it!

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