Bio Hacking Nutrition to A Better You!
Biohacking brings the hacker ethic to your body. Basically, it’s about maximizing your biology through a series of investigations, measurements, feedback and action to achieve the ultimate results with minimal effort. Think: creating your optimal self.
It’s been criticized for being expensive and elitist, but, really, every time you take a vitamin, meditate or get a massage, you’re biohacking. Here are simple and cost-effective bio hacks for your food and nutrition:
1.Vitamins and Nutrients
You can always boost your mental performance with nutrients, such as Magnesium, vitamin D, Krill Oil, Turmeric, and vitamin B.
Magnesium can actually reverse the effects of stress on your brain, and can increase your memory and cognitive function. Magnesium is also vital to ATP production, so low magnesium means low brain energy, which isn’t Bulletproof!
Vitamin D is also a great supplement for your brain. It helps protect you from free radical damage, which can decrease your cognitive performance.
Krill oil, which is packed with DHA, EPA and Astaxanthin, keeps the neurons in your brain communicating freely. Better communication in your nervous system obviously means that you’re going to be smarter, faster, and better.
Turmeric is a spice frequently used in Indian food. It contains curcumin, which is great for your brain. Curcumin is an antioxidant that travels easily from your blood to your brain, and like vitamin D, it helps protect your brain from free radical damage.
B Vitamins deters the amino acid homocysteine ( which is responsible for brain shrinkage and may eventually lead to Alzheimer’s). In fact, it seems that vitamin B may be able to decrease brain shrinkage by up to 90% and may make shrinkage 7 times slower.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard about the negative health effects of gluten. Gluten can cause learning problems, focus issues, and memory malfunction. Gluten causes your body to elevate levels of inflammation, particularly by forming cytokines, proteins that are found in patients with Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and autism — all neurological diseases.
Histamines are a neurotransmitter, which means they send messages between your body and your brain. High histamine levels can cause headaches, sleep issues, and anxiety, and you can get histamines not just from your allergies, but also through food — particularly aged, smoked, or cured foods. Eating more low-histamine foods can help protect you from these problems.
4.Try an Elimination Diet
If you struggle with food allergies, have trouble digesting foods, experience skin issues like eczema and acne or find yourself constantly fatigued, it’s probably time to biohack yourself with an elimination diet.
An elimination diet sounds scary, but it’s just a short-term eating plan to figure out if the foods you’re eating are playing a role in whatever issues you’re experiencing. Here’s how it works: for 3–4 weeks, you’ll remove foods that are known allergens, giving any inflammation time to go down and giving you a clean slate. Gluten, soy, dairy, peanuts and corn are all foods to cut out during this time.
Then, slowly, you’ll re-introduce the banned foods, paying attention to how you feel and how your body responds physically. If you suspect a food you’ve added back into your diet is an irritant, you’ll remove it again and see if symptoms clear up. The goal is to pinpoint whether you’re less tolerant of some foods than others, and then make informed decisions about what you’re eating. For instance, if it turns out you don’t respond well to cow’s milk, you might want to use coconut milk in your coffee or try goat cheese as part of a dairy-free diet.
An elimination diet is one of the best bio hacks you can do for yourself. Some people don’t understand how good they can truly feel until they remove some of the worst food offenders from their diet.
5.Kick sugar to the curb
Giving addictive sugar the boot is one of the best things you can do for your overall health. It can be a tough bio hack, but one of the most rewarding.
You don’t have to eliminate naturally occurring sugars, like the ones you find in fruits and dairy, from your diet. Added sugars are the ones you want to worry about. You’ll find those in products like soft drinks, processed foods and sweets, but also in foods like flavored yogurt, condiments (check those barbecue sauce and ketchup labels!) and energy drinks.
What makes sugar so bad for your body? It increases your risk of type 2 diabetes, it leads to mood swings, it increases inflammation in the body and lowers energy — and that’s just the shorter version of the list of problems! How to reduce your sugar habit? Learn how to measure sugar, look for it in all its forms on labels (hint: anything ending in “ose” and natural sweeteners like honey, molasses and fruit juice still count) and limit processed foods.
6.Change when you’re eating
Did you know that by simply changing when you’re eating, you can biohack your body? Intermittent fasting is gaining popularity as a method of losing weight and normalizing insulin sensitivity, which can help prevent chronic diseases like diabetes. It also regulates ghrelin levels, more commonly known as the hunger hormone, which tells your brain when you’re hungry, and leptin, which signals to the brain that you’re full and should stop eating.
The cool thing about fasting is that there is more than one way to do it. Some people opt for alternate-day fasting, where on fasting days, you limit your calories to 25 percent of your normal intake, and then eat your usual amount of calories on non-fasting days.
There’s time-restricted eating, where you only eating during a certain window during the day ( If you eat dinner early and tend to have a late breakfast, you’re already doing this!). Though intermittent fasting can take some time to get used to, depending on your health goals, it may be a good biohacking option.
Top five takeaways for biohacking with food
Remove or reduce processed foods.
Eat organic, nutrient dense foods.
Try medicinal foods & supplements.
Try intermittent fasting!