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Our MHS 2024 Speakers

Each year at Metabolic Health Summit®, we bring you cutting edge research and applications of metabolic health and therapy from the world's most progressive medical professionals, forward-thinking academics, and innovative thought leaders from across the globe. Watch the replay of Metabolic Health Summit® 2024, and learn the latest science on cancer, neurological health, metabolic disorders, human performance, and so much more from our world class presenters.

Metabolic Health Summit 2024 Speakers

Valter Longo, PhD

University of Southern California

Keynote Speaker

Valter Longo, PhD, is the Edna Jones Professor in Gerontology and Professor in Biological Science. He is also the Director of the USC Longevity Institute. He is interested in understanding the fundamental mechanisms of aging in yeast, mice and humans by using genetics and biochemistry techniques. He is also interested in identifying the molecular pathways conserved from simple organisms to humans that can be modulated to protect against multiple stresses and treat or prevent cancer, Alzheimer’s Disease and other diseases of aging. The focus is on the signal transduction pathways that regulate resistance to oxidative damage in yeast and mice.

Sara Gottfried, MD

Thomas Jefferson University Hospital

Virtual Speaker

Dr. Gottfried is a physician/scientist, bioengineer, educator, researcher, consultant, and keynote speaker. A thought leader in precision, functional, and personalized medicine, Dr. Gottfried has devoted her career to delivering superb, evidence-based multiomic care to patients with impeccable service, and to building bridges with allopathic physicians through disruptive education. Her mission is to reinvent healthcare toward the standard of personalized medicine.

Ben Bikman, PhD

Brigham Young University

Dr. Bikman earned his Ph.D. in Bioenergetics and was a postdoctoral fellow with the Duke-National University of Singapore in metabolic disorders. Currently, his professional focus as a scientist and professor is to better understand the role of elevated insulin and nutrient metabolism in regulating obesity, diabetes, and dementia. In addition to his academic pursuits, Dr. Bikman is the author of Why we get sick and a co-founder in HLTH Code.

Lily Nichols, RDN, CDN


Nichols is a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist, Certified Diabetes Educator, researcher, and author with a passion for evidence-based prenatal nutrition. Her work is known for being research-focused, thorough, and critical of outdated dietary guidelines. She is co-founder of the Women’s Health Nutrition Academy and the author of two books, Real Food for Pregnancy and Real Food for Gestational Diabetes. Lily’s bestselling books are used in university-level maternal nutrition courses, and have even influenced prenatal nutrition policy internationally.

Abbi Hernandez, PhD

University of Alabama Birmingham

Dr. Hernandez received her PhD from the University of Florida where she studied age and diet related changes in neurobiological and cognitive function. Her work has also included investigating the potential of ketogenic and time restricted feeding diets to prevent age-related cognitive decline, and more recently exploring the gut-brain-axis and the potential of restoring metabolic health for the prevention of age and AD related cognitive and neurobiological impairment.

Christopher Palmer, MD

Harvard Medical School

Dr. Palmer is a Harvard psychiatrist and researcher working at the interface of metabolism and mental health. He is the Director of the Department of Postgraduate and Continuing Education at McLean Hospital and an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. He has been pioneering the use of the medical ketogenic diet in the treatment of psychiatric disorders, and most recently, he has proposed a comprehensive theory of what causes mental illness titled Brain Energy.

Jeff Volek, PhD

The Ohio State University

For the last two decades, Dr. Volek has performed cutting edge research on how humans adapt to diets restricted in carbohydrates with a dual focus on clinical and performance applications of nutritional ketosis. His scholarly work includes more than 300 peer-reviewed scientific manuscripts and five books, including a New York Times Best Seller, and he has provided more than 200 lectures at scientific and industry conferences around the world. Dr. Volek is also the Co-Founder and former Chief Science Officer of Virta Health.

Peter Crawford, MD, PhD

University of Minnesota

Dr. Crawford is a dedicated researcher and educator who is devoted to understanding the metabolic origins of both wellness and disease, particularly those rooted in overnutrition and maladaptive energy economy. As the Associate Dean for Research Operations, Division Director of the Division of Molecular Medicine, and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Medicine, Dr. Crawford has positioned himself at the forefront of medical research that explores the intersection of intermediary metabolism and disease processes like obesity and cardiovascular disease.

Kelly Faltersack, MS, RDN, LDN

UW Health

Faltersack is a registered dietitian nutritionist at UW Health in Madison, Wisconsin. Kelly has over 10 years of experience as a registered dietitian nutritionist, five years of experience in neuro intensive care, and over six years of expertise managing ketogenic metabolic therapy for adults with epilepsy and other neurological conditions. Kelly was a co-author of "Transition of Care for Adolescent and Young Adult Patients on Dietary Therapy for Epilepsy" published in the Journal of Pediatric Epilepsy in 2020.

Iain Campbell, PhD

University of Edinburgh

Dr. lain Campbell is the Baszucki Research Fellow in Metabolic Psychiatry at the University of Edinburgh. He has a PhD in Global Health from the University of Edinburgh and is a principal investigator on a pilot trial of a ketogenic diet for bipolar disorder at The Division of Psychiatry within the Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences. He is also a co-investigator leading workstreams on 2 Wellcome Trust grants Helios-BD and Ambient-BD. Dr. Campbell has lived experience of Bipolar Disorder Type 2 and has experienced the benefits of ketogenic metabolic therapy for over 7 years. Dr. Campbell is also a composer interested in the intersection between bipolar disorder, creativity, and music.

Tommy Wood, MD, PhD

University of Washington

Tommy Wood MD, PhD is a neuroscientist, elite-level professional nerd, and performance consultant to world class athletes in a dozen sports. He received an undergraduate degree in biochemistry from the University of Cambridge, a medical degree from the University of Oxford, and a PhD in physiology and neuroscience from the University of Oslo. Tommy is currently a Research Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Washington, where his research interests include determining how early brain injury impacts brain health across the lifespan, as well as developing easily-accessible and equitable methods with which to track health, performance, and longevity in both professional athletes and the general population.

Franziska Spritzler, RD, LD, CDE

Low Carb Dietitian LLC

Franziska Spritzler, RD, CDE Low Carb Dietitian, LLC Franziska Spritzler is a Registered Dietitian, Certified Diabetes Educator, clinician, and writer with 10 years of experience implementing ketogenic and low-carb diets. Her article “A Low-Carbohydrate, Whole-Foods Approach to Managing Diabetes and Prediabetes” was published in the American Diabetes Association’s Diabetes Spectrum before the ADA officially recognized therapeutic carbohydrate restriction as a valid option for diabetes management. She is passionate about helping people of all ages improve their metabolic health and quality of life.

Kyle Gillett, MD

Gillett Health

Dr. Gillett enjoys providing holistic individualized care to his patients. His practice includes preventative medicine, aesthetics, sports medicine, hormone optimization, obstetrics and infertility, integrative medicine, precision medicine, and genomics. He believes that each human is a unique creation that requires attention to their body, mind, and soul to achieve optimal health. He enjoys caring for others using shared decision-making and an evidence-based, patient-centered approach. He is active in Obesity Medicine organizations and firmly believes “food is medicine” and “exercise is medicine”. Dr. Gillett describes the “6 pillars of health”: exercise, diet, sleep, stress, sunlight, and spirit. These are more powerful than any medication or supplement. He enjoys spending time outdoors on the farm with his wife, two sons, and two wolfhounds.

Jonathan Jun, MD

Johns Hopkins

Dr. Jun is a pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine physician. He is an expert in the diagnosis and treatment of sleep-disordered breathing, and in the care of critically ill patients in the Medical ICU. He is a member of the Sleep Fellowship Program Evaluation and Clinical Competency Committee and provides teaching to medical students and residents at Johns Hopkins. Dr. Jun’s current research interests include the metabolic consequences of obstructive sleep apnea, hypoxia, and obesity.

Tomás Duraj, MD, PhD

Boston College

Dr. Duraj is a medical doctor of Czech-Austrian origin, receiving his Medical Degree from the Rey Juan Carlos University and his PhD in Translational Medicine from the CEU San Pablo University. His scientific research has focused mainly on studying the potential of bioenergetic modulation and cancer metabolism, with special emphasis on glioblastoma, the most aggressive and lethal primary brain tumor. After developing cancer research at the team of Dr. Ayuso Sacido in Madrid, he joined Dr. Seyfried laboratory at Boston College. In his clinical practice, he specializes in health optimization through nutritional and lifestyle interventions for diseases with a metabolic root cause or therapeutic approach: cancer, insulin resistance and diabetes, obesity, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, epilepsy, and longevity.


Jocelyn Tan, MD

University of Pittsburgh

Dr. Tan is a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. She is also a practicing medical oncologist and the founding Integrative Oncology Director at the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System. On Facebook, she is known as the KetoOncologist, where she runs a public online community called Keto for Cancer.

Bret Goodpaster, PhD

AdventHealth Translational Research Institute

Bret Goodpaster is the Scientific Director and a Senior Investigator at the AdventHealth Translational Research Institute. Dr. Goodpaster’s primary research is in the pathophysiology of human obesity, insulin resistance, and diabetes, and to help decipher biological mechanisms underlying the health benefits of exercise. He has received a number of awards and honors for his work, including the Nathan Shock Award from the National Institute of Aging in 2008, for his work investigating the role of muscle fat infiltration in aging and muscle quality. He is particularly well known for “the Athlete’s Paradox” which has shifted the paradigm in Type 2 diabetes research.

Matt Baszucki


Matt Baszucki is a patient advocate. He lived with type 1 bipolar disorder for five years before coming across ketogenic therapy. Now, having effectively cured his illness with metabolic interventions, Matt works to educate the public about the roles of sleep, diet, and circadian rhythm management in mental illness. He currently works full-time in tech supporting third-party developers.

Andrew Koutnik, PhD

Sansum Diabetes Research Institute

Research Scientist at the Sansum Diabetes Research Institute and Visiting Scientist at Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition running clinical trials investigating the impact of divergent nutrition interventions on cardiometabolic health in Type-1 Diabetes, Pre-Diabetes, Type-2 Diabetes, and Obesity currently funded by the American Diabetes Association, National Institutes of Health, and Department of Defense Congressionally Directly Medical Research Program Strategies. Previously, Dr. Koutnik conducted human trials evaluating the biological impact of elevating ketone bodies under extreme stress in elite military and metabolically unhealthy clinical populations funded by the Department of Defense. Dr. Koutnik is a father, husband, Type-1 Diabetic, and Type-1 Diabetes patient advocate living in Santa Barbara, California.

Chad Vanags

Becoming Elite Founder & Cancer Patient

Chad was building a career path in Saas - as CMO of a payments company, starting his own payments company, and then onto training account executives, BDRs, and managers for companies like Dropbox, Calendly, and Dialpad while at Winning by Design. Then, in July of 2022, he was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. Since diagnosis, he's been documenting the process of becoming metabolically, physically, and mentally elite to help him heal from cancer, continue to execute on his vision, and help top performers perform better. He's currently building the companies most authentic to him: Becoming Elite, Uncharted Spirits, and Teaquila Farm.

Ezequiel Dantas, MD, PhD

Weill Cornell Medicine

Ezequiel is a physician and scientist with a PhD in Immunology. He is studying the effects of dietary interventions on the immune system using mouse models and human samples. Cancer is another example where diet can influence immunity so Ezequiel is studying the crosstalk among tumor cells, the immune system, and the regulators of systemic metabolism that ultimately lead to the wasting syndrome called cachexia. This research has also sparked his interest in finding and validating early biomarkers for cachexia and lung cancer.

Iñigo San Millán, PhD

University of Colorado

Iñigo San Millán, PhD, is a leading expert in exercise physiology and human performance. As the director of the Exercise Physiology & Human Performance Laboratory at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, he is renowned for his commitment to using scientific testing to create personalized training plans for athletes of all levels. San Millán's work not only optimizes athletic performance but also explores the potential of exercise in preventing and treating metabolic diseases like Type 2 diabetes. His research-driven approach has revolutionized how individuals approach their fitness goals and overall health.

Dave Feldman

University of California, Los Angeles

Dave Feldman is a senior software engineer and entrepreneur who became obsessed with understanding Lipidology after seeing his cholesterol climb substantially on a low carb diet. He has since performed a series of experiments around this phenomenon, published several papers on its mechanisms and phenotype, and is currently conducting a clinical study out of UCLA through his newly formed public charity, the Citizen Science Foundation.

Anna Nicholas

University of Bath

Anna Nicholas is a PhD researcher in nutrition and metabolic physiology at the University of Bath where she is studying dietary strategies to improve physical and cognitive health in aging. As part of this, she is leading a randomized controlled trial to investigate the immune, metabolic and cognitive effects of exogenous ketone supplementation in older adults. She is also using bioinformatics tools to characterize and compare changes to fat and muscle tissue in aging and obesity. Anna’s previous interests were in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes and the use of low energy versus low carbohydrate diets to treat this condition. She has a master’s in Human Nutrition from the University of Surrey and a bachelor’s in Natural Sciences from the University of Cambridge. Beyond academia, she has interests in mindful eating and behavior change and is a Registered Associate Nutritionist and a qualified mindful eating instructor and health coach. Anna is passionate about rigorous and clear communication of scientific ideas. Alongside her PhD, she works as a science writer for the Metabolic Health Initiative, writing articles for their social media channels and email newsletter.

Sheila Dean, DSc, RDN

Integrative and Functional Nutrition Academy

DR. SHEILA DEAN, DSc,RD,LD,IFNCP is a registered and licensed dietitian nutritionist and board certified integrative and functional medicine practitioner. She was the owner of Palm Harbor Center for Health & Healing, an integrative and functional medicine based private practice and wellness center in Palm Harbor, Florida for 17 years. A published author, national speaker and media spokesperson, Dr. Dean has taught nutrition science for over 27 years as adjunct professor at the University of Tampa, University of South Florida Morsani School of Medicine, Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine, Maryland University of Integrative Health, Schiller International University, Saybrook University and Saint Petersburg College. She is also the co-founder of IFNA, the Integrative and Functional Nutrition Academy, (www.IFNAcademy.com) a comprehensive online training and mentoring program designed to teach health care practitioners how to seek the true root causes of disease to restore optimal health and function and ultimately transform the practice of nutrition using the most effective integrative and functional nutrition diagnostic tools and treatment protocols for preventing and reversing chronic illness.

Kaja Falkenhain, PhD

Pennington Biomedical Research Institute

Dr. Falkenhain earned her BSc in Cognitive Sciences in Germany, followed by her PhD at the University of British Columbia where she investigated the effects of endogenous and exogenous ketosis on cardiometabolic health. Her broader research interest is focused on cross-disciplinary human research that investigates the metabolic and physiological effects (including the mechanistic underpinnings thereof) of nutritional and lifestyle interventions. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Pennington Biomedical Research Institute.

Richard Johnson, MD

University of Colorado

Richard J. Johnson, M.D. is a Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado. For the last 20 plus years he has been a clinician and a medical scientist who has been internationally recognized for his work on sugar and how it may play a role in obesity and diabetes. He has been funded by the National Institute of Health and is widely published, with over 500 academic papers, and with several popular books on the subject, of which the most recent is his book, called Nature Wants Us to Be Fat.


Nicholas Norwitz, PhD

Harvard Medical School

Dr. Nicholas Norwitz, PhD completed his undergraduate studies at Dartmouth College, graduating Valedictorian and majoring in cell biology and biochemistry. Thereafter, he completed his PhD at the University of Oxford in the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, his thesis focused on ketone metabolism and neurodegenerative diseases. He is currently a medical student at Harvard Medical School (MS3), with plans to pursue a residency in internal medicine or pediatrics and a career as a physician-scientist. His current research interests are focused on the metabolic effects of dietary macronutrient manipulation as relates to the carbohydrate insulin model, lipid energy model and the lean mass hyper-responder phenotype.

Kristi Storoschuk

Queen's University

Kristi Storoschuk is a PhD candidate in Muscle Physiology at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Her research is focused on the determinants of lactate threshold and mitochondrial adaptations to high-intensity exercise. She is interested in how nutrient-exercise timing influences the adaptations to exercise that improve metabolic flexibility. Kristi also has years of experience working in science communication with a focus on nutritional ketosis and metabolic therapies.


Partner Presenters

Nasha Winters, ND

Metabolic Terrain Institute of Health

Dr. Nasha is a licensed Naturopathic Doctor (ND) and a Fellow of the American Board of Naturopathic Oncology (FABNO). She is a global healthcare authority in integrative cancer research. Dr. Nasha is a sought-after speaker and consults with physicians worldwide. Dr. Winters’s first experience with cancer was at the age of 19. She was diagnosed with stage IV ovarian cancer and given only a few months to live. Her metabolic approach to cancer stems from her nearly three decades of personal and professional experience in the field of integrative oncology.

Andy Galpin, PhD

California State University, Fullerton

Andy Galpin is a tenured full Professor at California State University, Fullerton, where he is also Co-Director of the Center for Sport Performance and Founder/Director of the Biochemistry and Molecular Exercise Physiology Laboratory. He is a Human Performance scientist with a PhD in Human Bioenergetics and over 100 peer-reviewed publications and presentations. Dr. Galpin has worked with elite athletes (including All-Star, All-Pro, MVP, Cy Young, Olympic Gold medalists, Major winners, World titlist/ contenders, etc.) across the UFC, MLB, NBA, PGA, NFL, Boxing, Olympics, and Military/Special Forces, and more. He is also a Co-Founder in Absolute Rest, BioMolecular Athlete, and RAPID Health & Performance.

JJ Virgin, CNS, BCHN, EP-C

As a triple-board certified nutrition expert and Fitness Hall of Famer, JJ is a passionate advocate of the healing power of nutrition, and is mission driven to change the way the world sees aging and longevity. JJ is a prominent TV and media personality who co-hosted TLC’s Freaky Eaters and was the nutrition expert for Dr. Phil’s Weight Loss Challenges. She’s made numerous appearances on PBS, Dr. Oz, Rachael Ray, Access Hollywood, and The TODAY Show. She also speaks regularly, commanding audiences of 10,000 or more, and has shared the stage with other highly sought-after experts including Tony Robbins, Seth Godin, Lisa Nichols, Gary Vaynerchuk, Dr. Mark Hyman, Dan Buettner, Mary Morrissey and more.


Stephanie Venn-Watson, DVM-MPH


Dr. Stephanie Venn-Watson is Co-Founder and CEO of Seraphina Therapeutics, a health and wellness company that develops groundbreaking essential fatty acid products to help people age healthier. Dr. Venn-Watsonis a veterinary epidemiologist and the world’s leading expert on C15:0, the first essential fatty acid to be discovered in over 90 years. Stephanie previously served as an epidemiologist for the World Health Organization and U.S. Navy. With over 60 patents and 80 peer-reviewed scientific publications, her novel approach to discovering nutrient-based therapeutics has been featured on NPR’s Science Friday, CBS, BBC, and National Geographic. Dr. Venn-Watson has been awarded the Department of Health and Human Services Secretary’s Award for Innovations in Disease Prevention and Health Promotion and Boehringer Ingelheim’s Innovation Award. Seraphina won Nutritional Outlook Magazine’s Best of the Industry award, as well as having been recognized as a Fast Company World Changing Idea for its pure C15:0 ingredient. Dr. Venn-Watson received her B.S. in Animal Physiology and Neuroscience from UC San Diego, D.V.M. from Tufts University, M.P.H. from Emory University, and was a National Research Council Associate with the Armed Forces Medical Intelligence Center. She is an Albert Schweitzer Fellow for Life.

Metabolic Health Summit Organizers

Victoria Field

Metabolic Health Initiative

Victoria is the co-founder of Metabolic Health Initiative (MHI), a science education organization that hosts the international scientific conference, Metabolic Health Summit. MHI has a mission to revolutionize science and medicine by refocusing attention on the importance of nutrition and metabolism in treating disease, extending life, and improving human performance.

Angela Poff, PhD

University of South Florida

Dr. Poff is a Research Associate in the Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology at the University of South Florida, Co-Founder of Metabolic Health Initiative, and Co-Host of Metabolic Health Summit. Her research focuses on the development and testing of novel non-toxic, metabolic-targeted therapies for cancer and neurological diseases.

Dominic D'Agostino, PhD

University of South Florida

Dr. D’Agostino is an Associate Professor in the Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology at the University of South Florida, a Research Scientist at the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC), and Co-Host of Metabolic Health Summit. His laboratory develops & tests metabolic-based strategies for targeting seizure disorders, neurodegenerative diseases, and cancer.