It’s a seemingly undeniable truth that ageing is inevitable. But what if everything we’ve been taught to believe about ageing is wrong? What if we could choose our lifespan? David Sinclair, PhD, AO, is a professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School. One of the leading innovators of his generation, he has been named by Time as “one of the 100 most influential people in the world” and top fifty most influential people in healthcare. David’s eye-opening and provocative work takes us to the frontlines of research that is pushing the boundaries on our perceived scientific limitations, revealing incredible breakthroughs—many from Sinclair’s own lab at Harvard—that demonstrate how we can slow down, or even reverse, ageing. The key is activating newly discovered vitality genes, the descendants of an ancient genetic survival circuit that is both the cause of ageing and the key to reversing it. Recent experiments in genetic reprogramming suggest that soon we may not just be able to feel younger but become younger. In this interview, I speak to Dr. David Sinclair, professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School, and author of Lifespan about why we age, why we don’t have to. We explore the technologies and simple lifestyle changes that can help us live younger and healthier for longer, and discuss David’s bold new vision for the future of humankind where we could live healthy lives over many centuries.

Thought Economics

Ben Francis is the Founder and ambitious entrepreneur behind leading global fitness brand, Gymshark. Ben founded Gymshark when he was 19 years old, while still a student at Aston University. In addition to his full-time commitment to his studies, Ben juggled working as a pizza delivery man to fund his Gymshark venture. Ben made the decision to step down as CEO in 2017, to allow him to continue to focus on the things that have always set Gymshark apart – innovative design, creative content and consumer first thinking. In 2020, Gymshark became the first DTC brand in the UK to achieve Unicorn status with no external capital funding. The recent investment partnership with General Atlantic will see Gymshark become a true global brand. In this interview, I speak to Ben Francis about his journey in entrepreneurship and how he created Gymshark, one of the world’s most popular fitness brands.

Thought Economics

To learn more about the 2020 SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) ‘Coronavirus’ pandemic, and to learn more about what we can do now, and in the future, to respond to virus outbreaks, and pandemics, I spoke to the world’s foremost experts: Professor John Oxford (The UK’s top expert on influenza and Emeritus Professor of Virology at the University of London), Professor Christian Bréchot (Professor at the University of South Florida & President of the Global Virus Network), Professor Harish Nair (Professor & leader of Respiratory Viral Epidemiology research programme, University of Edinburgh), Dr. Roberto Consentini is Emergency Medicine Chief of the Papa Giovanni XXIII hospital in Bergamo, Professor Michael T. Osterholm (Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy CIDRAP), Gideon Lichfield (Editor in Chief, MIT Technology Review), Yonden Lhatoo (Chief News Editor, South China Morning Post, in a personal capacity), Trish Greenhalgh (Professor of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford), Matt Strauss (Former Medical Director of Critical Care at Guelph Hospital, Canada & Asst. Professor at Queens University), Dr. Zaher Sahloul (President of MedGlobal & Critical Care Doctor) and Vincent Racaniello (Professor of Microbiology & Immunology, College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University).

Thought Economics

I want you to make a fist and hold it just to the left of the centre of your chest.  Just under your ribs, is an organ, around that size, which will beat around 3 billion times in your lifetime pumping blood around the 100,000 miles of vessels that supply every part of your body. The heart is a miraculous product of evolution, and one which plays a role more critical in the fact that we are alive, and the fact that we could die – than any other organ in our body.   Perhaps unsurprising therefore that even with our advances in medical science, cardiovascular disease remains the largest single health burden to humanity, contributing to over 30% of all deaths worldwide and costing the global economy over $1 trillion each year. To understand more about the reality of cardiovascular disease, I spoke to two of the world’s most preeminent cardiovascular physicians, Dr. Haider Warraich (Author of: State of the Heart, Exploring the History, Science and Future of Cardiac Disease) and Dr. Sandeep Jauhar (Author of: Heart: A History)

Thought Economics

Wim Hof got his nickname “The Iceman” after he broke a number of records with regards to resisting cold. Some of his feats include climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in shorts, running a half marathon above the Arctic Circle on his bare feet, and standing in a container while covered with ice cubes for more than 112 minutes. Wim is convinced that our bodies are capable of doing the same exceptionally things his body allows him to do. I caught up with Wim to learn more about how we can all learn to embrace the cold.

Thought Economics

If you are lucky enough to live to 79 (the global average lifespan) you will have spent around 25 of those years (roughly one third of your entire life) asleep. Scientific advances over the past quarter of a century have created a renaissance in sleep research, giving us greater insights into the role and importance of sleep in our lives. To learn more, I spoke to Dr. Matthew Walker, Professor of Neuroscience and Founder & Director of The Center for Human Sleep Science at the University of California, Berkeley.

Thought Economics

AJ Mendez, the youngest of three children, grew-up in a family fighting poverty, mental illness and addiction, an environment without stability which would cause many to write her off.  In the ultimate act of rebellion against expectation, AJ went on to build a career as one of the world’s best professional wrestlers (under the ring name AJ Lee) before becoming a New York Times Bestselling author with her book Crazy Is My Superpower: How I Triumphed by Breaking Bones, Breaking Hearts, and Breaking the Rules.  She is an advocate an ambassador for causes ranging from animal rights to mental health, and has built a hugely successful life, arguably against the odds. I spoke to AJ to learn how she’s turned ‘Crazy’ into her superpower.

Thought Economics

In 2015, New York City announced an unprecedented commitment to create a mental health system that works for all the city’s residents, and a commitment to empower citizens’ mental health and well-being.  This initiative was titled to match its desired outcome: ThriveNYC. To learn more about how New York City is empowering the mental health of its citizens, and becoming an international leader in creating a mental health friendly city, I spoke with theFirst Lady of New York City, Chirlane McCray.

Thought Economics

The World’s Most Profound Health Challenge. In these exclusive interviews we speak to: Dr. Thomas Insel (Former Director of the National Institutes of Mental Health, NIMH – Co-Founder, Mindstrong Health), Dr. Shekhar Saxena (Director: Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse at the World Health Organisation, WHO), Paul Farmer CBE (Chief Executive of Mind, the world’s largest Mental Health NGO), Sergeant Kevin Briggs (Guardian of the Golden Gate Bridge), Marcus Trescothick (International Cricketer and Mental Health Campaigner) Professor Vikram Patel (Professor at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and the Public Health Foundation of India), Professor Andrew Solomon (Writer and lecturer on politics, culture and psychology, a Professor of Clinical Psychology at Columbia University Medical Center, and President of PEN American Center),Professor Green (Rapper, Singer, Songwriter, Actor and Television Personality) and Matt Haig (Author, Journalist & Activist). We look at the realities of mental health worldwide, understand the true burden on individuals, communities and countries and look at the opportunities to deal with our global mental health crisis.

Thought Economics

The Story of Humanity’s Relationship With its Most Precious Resource.  In this interview series we speak to Guy Ryder (Chair, UN-Water & Director General of the International Labour Organisation, ILO), Professor Steven Chu (Nobel Prize Winning Scientist & 12th U.S. Secretary of Energy), Dr Peter Gleick (President Emeritus & Chief Scientist, Pacific Institute), Christoph Gorder (President & Chief Water Officer, Charity Water), Professor Mark Zeitoun (Professor of Water Security and Policy, University of East Anglia), Barbara Frost (CEO, WaterAid), Professor Benedito Braga (President of the World Water Council) and Gary White (Co-Founder & CEO, Water.Org).  We discuss how water has shaped our species, the scale of the global water crisis, how it’s impacting our species and environment, and how we can achieve a future where we have enough water for all of us, and all our needs.

Thought Economics

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