Pills falling upwards in an hourglass on blue background

The Era of Age-Reversing Medications is Here

Scientists haven’t found the Fountain of Youth yet, but these drugs are pretty darn close.


iologist and longevity expert David Sinclair, Ph.D., a researcher in the department of genetics and co-director of the Paul F. Glenn Center for Biology of Aging Research at Harvard Medical School, recently tweeted that a study he co-authored found that a “chemical cocktail” could be a step toward age reversal in a pill. 

The “cocktail” which includes valproic acid (an anti-seizure medication) and tranylcypromine (an antidepressant) was able to reverse the age of muscle, bone and organ tissues in mice (1). 

The study even garnered attention from billionaire tech mogul (or super villain) Elon Musk, who tweeted in response, “Ok, so what exactly is it?” Looks like Bryan Johnson isn’t the only rich AF tech bro with immortal aspirations.

“Studies on the optic nerve, brain tissue, kidney, and muscle have shown promising results, with improved vision and extended lifespan in mice and, recently, in April of this year, improved vision in monkeys,” Sinclair tweeted. 

Critics of the study say that it’s too early to determine whether these results will carry over into human participants. In a tweet, Sinclair acknowledges that they still have years of clinical research ahead of them before we’ll be “activating embryonic genes” and undergoing “whole-body rejuvenation” with a pill. 

In the meantime,  there are several medications on the market that longevity experts say may help turn back the clock. 


Metformin is one of the most widely prescribed medications for people with type 2 diabetes. But its it’s off-label ability to improve weight loss and stave off neurodegenerative disease that have boosted its popularity among experts. 

In his book Lifespan, Sinclair shared that he takes a gram (1000 mg) of metformin daily in hopes of boosting his metabolism and triggering autophagy—the process in which your body cleans out old or damaged cells. Typical dosage ranges from 500mg to 2 grams. 

Metformin works by decreasing insulin resistance and lowering sugar absorption in your gut and produced in your liver—which is why it’s so effective at treating diabetes. 

Research suggests metformin may also reduce all-cause mortality associated with cancer, inflammation, neurodegeneration, and other age-related diseases (2). The link? When certain cancers (like liver, pancreatic, and colon) are deprived of glucose—the molecular form of sugar—the cells starve and are unable to grow. Metformin may also have anti-tumor properties (3). 


Acarbose is another diabetes drug that shows promising off-label, lifespan-extending benefits. 

“There are several [medications] that were found to have significant lifespan enhancement repeatedly. One is acarbose,” Longevity doctor Peter Attia, M.D., said on an episode of The Tim Ferriss Show. “The idea is that acarbose prevents the absorption of starch.”

He explains that animal studies have found that acarbose extended lifespan, regardless of whether or not the subject lost weight or had lower glucose levels. This means that acarbose’s longevity benefits may be independent from weight loss and glucose management (4). 

Attia flags that acarbose can be hard on your stomach, which may result in symptoms like nausea and diarrhea, because the absorption prevention occurs in the gut. 


NAD+ (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) is a coenzyme that supports processes including metabolism, immune system activity, and DNA repair. These processes slow down as you age, making you more susceptible to weight gain and chronic illness. NAD+ may increase lifespan, improve energy levels, help with weight loss, and improve brain function (5).

“NAD+ remains one of the most promising and exciting molecules in the field of aging and longevity today,” Hone Health’s chief medical officer Jack Jeng, M.D., previously told The Edge. “That said, many of the published studies utilized animal models, so we are still awaiting confirmatory results in humans. But the data is overwhelmingly positive and there appear to be no serious adverse effects with NAD+ supplementation.”

Many longevity experts like Sinclair and neuroscientist Andrew Huberman, Ph.D., have previously said that they take NMN, a supplement that was recently banned by the FDA as a supplement because they are investigating its potential as a prescription drug (6). But taking NAD+ directly is way easier to source. 

You can get NAD+ through oral supplements, IV therapy, or by eating certain micronutrients such as vitamin B. Jeng notes that NAD+ injections tout benefits like better absorption and convenience. 


Attia is a personal fan of what he calls “hands down the most important and exciting and promising neuroprotective molecule”: rapamycin. The medication, which was discovered in the soil on Easter Island, is FDA-approved to treat organ rejection and certain cancers.

Rapamycin may inhibit a protein kinase called mTOR, which sends signals to your cells regarding growth, metabolism, and autophagy, says Jeng. If mTOR is overactive, your cells might not work as efficiently, which  can lead to cancer and inflammation.

While animal studies in rats and dogs show promising lifespan-extending results from rapamycin use, further human research is needed to tell if we’ll be able to reap the same benefits as our four-legged counterparts. 

“If you look at the promising data published on rapamycin so far, I am very optimistic that the medication can improve longevity,” Jeng previously said. “We still need more studies, however, to understand the right treatment regimen to provide the most benefit with the least amount of risk.” Attia isn’t waiting—he takes 5 mg of rapamycin. 


Longevity doctor Mark Hyman, M.D., has called this molecule “the secret to preventing aging.” Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant that may stave off oxidative stress from free radicals, which is a major cause of age-related inflammation (7).

Free radicals are unstable molecules created by your mitochondria when oxygen is converted into energy and are found in environmental toxins (like UV light, air pollution, car exhaust, and cigarette smoke), Jeng previously explained. “When free radicals outpace antioxidants, the imbalance creates oxidative stress. And there’s a link between oxidative stress and just about every malady you can think of.”

While glutathione can be taken as an oral supplement, research shows that it may not be able to be adequately absorbed during digestion (8). Glutathione injections can help you surpass the gut and send the “master antioxidant” (cool nickname, right?) straight into your bloodstream to reap the maximum benefits. 

Longevity medications metformin, NAD+, and glutathione may help you ward off age-related illnesses.