Dr. David Sinclair's Supplement Protocol

What it is:

Dr. David Sinclair is a Professor of Genetics at Harvard Medical School and an expert in the field of longevity. He runs research into supplementation protocols and practices his theories on himself. A prominent advocate for attempting to increase NAD levels in the body, specifically with NMN supplements, he has gained quite a bit of attention.

Sinclair claims maintaining NAD levels may lead to increased longevity and quality of life in older adults. He utilizes a selection of supplements to test his hypothesis of boosting NAD and, therefore, life longevity.

Purported claims:

The below information regarding Sinclair’s lifestyle is based on interviews, online resources, and his own claims.

Sinclair 2021 Basic Personal Protocol (And his 80+ father):


  • 1 gram of NMN

  • 1 gram of Resveratrol

  • With 1tsp of olive oil, vinegar, and basil leaves (for taste). Needs to be mixed with fat (e.g. olive oil) as it’s hydrophobic.

  • 500mg of the drug Metformin

  • 500mg of Fisetin

  • with yogurt

  • 500mg daily Quercetin

  • with yogurt

  • 1 mg of Spermidine


  • 800mg of the drug Metformin

  • except on nights before exercising to preserve his muscle mass.

Possibly also takes:

  • Vitamin D3

  • Vitamin K2

  • Statin (blood pressure drug)

  • 83mg of Aspirin (drug)

  • Antioxidant - Alpha lipoic acid (ALA)

  • Antioxidant - Coenzyme Q10

  • Omega-3 fish oil

Sinclair’s lifestyle choices are also a large part of his longevity claims. Consuming supplements without the proper health foundation is likely to be a waste of time, effort, and money.

  • Nutrition

  • Restricts calories

  • Follows Intermittent Fasting - Sinclair has 1-2 meals a day.

  • Consumes lots of vegetables, green tea, and fruits like blueberries.

  • Limits protein, especially red meat.

  • Avoids alcohol, refined sugars, and refined carbohydrates.

  • Exercise

  • His routine seems to vary, but what we could determine from his statements:

  • Performs high-intensity interval training until exhaustion three times a week.

  • Runs or walks every morning (~three miles).

  • Resistance training: 3 times per week (weights)

  • Sleep

  • 7+ hours a night.

  • Avoids blue light before bed.

What the science says:

NMN - The science is limited in NMN, but we know that so far, the research is promising in mice, yeast cells, and in small group, short-term settings. Maintaining normal levels of NAD is beneficial for repairing activity and preventing deteriorating cellular health (aging). However, how to support those levels is a contested subject at present, with different factions of the research community exploring alternative isolated supplements such as NMN, NR, and Rapamycin. There needs to be more research into the combinations of molecules (such as NMN and Resveratrol), studies in humans, with longer and larger population clinical trials.

Resveratrol - One of the significant hindrances of resveratrol supplementation is its poor solubility, absorbability, and bioavailability in humans. The amounts used in studies (recommended ~ 1g Rv/day) via supplements are almost impossible to obtain from whole foods due to the quantities required. Although the supplement research is still in its infancy, Increasing whole foods high in resveratrol, such as cocoa, grapes, and berries, will be beneficial, if not for the RV, but because they contain numerous other healthful compounds.

Metformin is a prescription drug used to treat Type II Diabetes. It is also used to increase mitochondria and their function, improving insulin signaling and raising NAD levels. In healthy individuals, this can cause more issues than it relieves.

  • Metformin can cause acidosis, upset stomach, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, and other side effects. Therefore, it is not recommended for everyone.

  • An alternative to Metformin (drug) for healthy individuals is berberine (supplement), as it is a plant compound that mimicks Metformin. It may amplify mitochondria and increases insulin sensitivity at high doses of 1-2 grams a day.

Fisetin - An anti-oxidant flavanol, concentrated into a supplement and touted to improve brain health, cognition, and memory. There are minimal studies to support these claims as of now. Found in strawberries, apples, and persimmons.

Quercetin - An anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory flavanol, concentrated into a supplement and touted to improve blood pressure, insulin resistance, and rheumatoid arthritis. It is a poorly absorbed supplement but taken with high-fat meals may minorly enhance its absorption. Evidence is limited as to its medical claims; more studies need to occur to support the current research.

Spermidine - A compound originally isolated in sperm but exists in various sources, including wheat germ, aged cheese, mushrooms, and legumes. Stated to improve brain health and stimulate autophagy of old, dysfunctional cells, it is in the infancy stages of research. A couple of small trials showed mild positive memory improvement in older adults. However, more studies will be needed to back and confirm these findings. There are no known side effects.

Our take:

The protocol David Sinclair subscribes to is quite extreme and likely too rigid to maintain long-term. The proven possible longevity gains are also minimal for such a radical approach. Living a regimented lifestyle may add a fraction of longevity later on in life but at the loss of quality in the present.

The research has not provided unmitigated proof that taking supplements is any better than improving basic lifestyle choices. First, focus on improving your sleep, nutrition, and exercise habits before experimenting with unproven supplements. It may not be as exciting as cutting-edge supplements, but it is a proven life extender.

Will this benefit you?

Nutrition is individualized. Sinclair constantly monitors himself to see how his body reacts to these unregulated supplements. His medical history, microbiome, medications, and lifestyle habits are specific to him. If you wish to follow his protocol, you must recognize that he admits he is experimenting on himself as a subject.

It’s not possible to out-supplement a bad lifestyle, so begin with the basics of Sinclair’s Protocol:

  • Get consistent, high-quality 7-9 hours of sleep each night.

  • Eliminate alcohol, refined sugars, and carbohydrates.

  • Reduce red meat intake to high-quality, organic, grass-fed items infrequently.

  • Increase phytonutrient-rich foods like vegetables and fruits.

Once you’ve completed the basics, speak to your Client Advocate about the Apeiron Life Supplementation program. Sourcing where you get your supplements is critical.

If you wish to follow a strict protocol like David Sinclair, please speak to your Apeiron Life Client Advocate, who can help personalize your eating, exercise, and sleep regime.

Still curious to try it? If you do, here’s what to keep an eye on:

  • Speak with your doctor before starting a new supplement.

  • Begin gradually with small quantities and work up slowly to the recommended dosage.

  • Monitor any changes in your body closely.

  • Gut, stool, and urine

  • Blood work, heart rate, and sleeping patterns.

  • Emotional changes: Irritability, negativity, or depressive states.

  • Physical changes: Fatigue, faintness, or brain fog.

References and additional reading:

Quality of Life and Longevity Research

NAD, NMN, and NR