Have you ever heard of the latest fitness trend to sweep the nation called Biohacking? Want to learn more about it? Then this article is for you. We have put together a cohesive post covering all you need to know about Biohacking. From the basics to trying it for yourself, keep on reading if you want to find out more about this trend.
What is Biohacking
Biohacking is form of DIY biology in which you make small changes to your diet or lifestyle in order to improve your physical and mental health. There are various bio hacks that you can try, which claim to help with anything from weight loss to increased brain function. Below we are going to explore the three main types of biohacking that are:
- DIY Biology
First, we are going to look at Nutrigenomics which has food and nutrition at its forefront. This type of biohacking helps things such as weight loss, decreasing risk of disease, identifying allergies and optimizing the functions of your body. Within Nutrigenomics you will monitor intake of certain foods and document how your body reacts to the consumption. As a result of this you are able to learn a lot more about your body in terms of its digestive function as well as how it processes nutrients and what helps and hinders your lifestyle.
Next, we are going to explore DIY Biology. This type of biohacking is carried out by scientists and doctors which share their tips and techniques with the general public and carry out controlled experiments in labs or medical offices with their patient. This type of biohacking often comes with a large price tag as it has to be carried out by professionals.
And lastly, we are going to look at the third type of biohacking which is Grinder. Grinder techniques focus on the technical hacking of a body such as implementing gadgets, chemical injections and implants to alter the way your body works. These often come with large health risks as it involves chemical alteration to your bodily functions. An example of Grinder biohacking was discussed in a 2018 New York Times article which saw RFID chips inserted into the body so that people could access parts of a secure hospital without a key card or even put sound enhancing magnets in your ears so that you could have built-in headphones. This type of biohacking is especially dangerous as it could increase your risk of developing cancer or chronic infections.
Biohacking at Home
As well as the methods listed above, there are also ways in which you can do biohacking at home for a fraction of the price. Here are just a few ways in which you can implement biohacking techniques into your daily regime:
- Drink Caffeine
- Elimination Diet
- Blue Light
- Intermittent Fasting
Coffee is a go-to drink for most adults, and did you know that this simple pick-me-up could also be a part of biohacking? Caffeine itself is great to boosting your focus and productivity. To introduce this as a form of biohacking you can start with an 8oz serving of coffee in your drink or even dark chocolate and start to keep a log of how you feel after it. Eventually after changing the amount of caffeine intake each day you will be able to find the right amount for you. You can also get a specially designed coffee which contains biohacking elements called bulletproof coffee, but when consuming this you are advised to speak to your doctor first.
Another type of biohacking you can do at home is by trying an elimination diet. How this works is you completely remove a certain type of food from your diet and then start to reintroduce it slowly to see how your body reacts after two weeks. This is an excellent technique especially for those who are trying to work out their food allergies, so eliminating dairy, red meat or processed sugar could be a good way to start. When you are reintroducing the food group you need to keep an eye on how your body reacts and look out for symptoms such as:
- Stomach pain
If any of these or any abnormal symptoms arise during the reintroduction you might find that you are sensitive/allergic to that type of food.
You could also look at getting a blue light which will help improve your mood. Blue light is emitted from the sun and helps to improve your emotional state and cognitive performance. Most people will often find in the wintertime that their focus and moral suffer, and that this is due to the lack of sunlight produced. To help combat this change in emotional state, you could use a blue light which emits a similar light to the sun to replenish your body with goodness in the darker months. This blue light is also the same as that which is produced from computer screens and phones that can interrupt your circadian rhythm if use improperly.
Next on the list is intermittent fasting which sees you eat at certain times according to a schedule rather than eating when you feel hungry. The most popular way of intermittent fasting is that you can eat for an eight-hour period from 12pm to 8pm a day but then you fast from 8pm until 12pm the following day. Fasting has many significant health benefits such as:
- Lower insulin levels
- Improved cell repair
- Cancer protection
Although this might sound tempting on the side of weight loss too, it is advised that you speak to your doctor before trying intermittent fasting if you have any issues with your blood sugar and blood pressure as well as history with certain medications, eating disorders or you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Have You Tried it?
Throughout this post we have taken an in depth look into the world of Biohacking and how it can be practiced to benefit your health and lifestyle. But now we want to know your thoughts on this, have you ever tried it or are tempted to give it a go after reading this post? Let us know over on our social media pages for Sports Fitness.
This article was written exclusively for Sports Fitness by Loren Astbury