Stephen Phinney, MD, PhD
Chief Medical Officer, Founder

Stephen Phinney is the Chief Medical Officer and Co-Founder of Virta Health, the first clinically-proven treatment to safely and sustainably reverse type 2 diabetes without medications or surgery.

As a physician-scientist with 40 years of experience divided between academic internal medicine and industry, Dr. Phinney has studied nutritional biochemistry with a long-term focus on low carbohydrate research and its benefits for physical performance and insulin sensitivity. His career has emphasized the interaction between diet and exercise and their effects on obesity, body composition, physical performance, and cellular membrane structure.

A Professor of Medicine Emeritus at University of California, Davis, Dr. Phinney is an internationally recognized expert on obesity, carbohydrate-restricted and ketogenic diets, diet and performance, and essential fatty acid metabolism. He has held clinical faculty appointments at MIT and the Universities of Vermont, Minnesota, and California at Davis as well as leadership positions at Monsanto, Galileo Laboratories, and Efficas.

Dr. Phinney's clinical experience includes inpatient and outpatient clinical nutrition, directing multidisciplinary weight management programs in three locations, and he has designed, completed, and published data from more than 20 clinical protocols involving diets, exercise, oxidative stress, and inflammation. His extensive experience in the design of clinical nutrition trials in both academic and industrial settings has led to more than 87 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters on clinical nutrition and biochemistry. He is the author of four books, including The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living and The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance, two foundational books on low carb nutrition science and nutritional ketosis that he co-authored with Jeff Volek, Ph.D, RD. Dr. Phinney also previously served on the editorial board of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Dr. Phinney received his medical degree from Stanford University, holds a Doctorate in nutritional biochemistry and metabolism from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and completed post-doctoral research at Harvard University.