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Biohack Yourself

You might think that the fact that I have hemophilia and HIV (not to mention having and then defeating Hepatitis C as well) is a downer. However, I am truly grateful for these things and believe that they have helped build my character and turned me in to the man I am today. As a matter of fact, being told that I had fewer than two years to live at the age of nineteen years old is probably the number one reason that I became a biohacker and have worked non-stop to improve my life, body, mind, immune system, and the world around me! This article is not only about biohacking, but also some tips and ideas on how you can get started (if you dig the premise).

Biohacking your body, mind, and life has become increasingly popular. The funny thing is, it is not new (at all). As a matter of fact, mankind has been doing some form or another of biohacking since we arrived here on this pale blue dot we affectionately call Earth. In more recent years it has morphed in to biohacking, which means investigating ourselves at a cellular, DNA, and genetic level. While technology has given us tremendous advances in these areas, we’ve been doing self-examinations forever. At it’s simplest level it boils down to trying something different in your life (diet, fitness, meditation, breathing deeply daily, and so on) and then carefully logging your changes, feelings, and other forms of impact that the new trial testing is doing to you. Over time, you figure out the things that are good for you and the things that aren’t. Once you have that list, you can throw out the bad and increase the good making you a better person as a whole. My version includes kaizen, which is the philosophy of daily incremental improvements.

For decades I have been studying traditional biohackers like Zhang San Feng, Benjamin Franklin, R. Buckminster Fuller, Sun Tzu, Depak Chopra, Stephen Covey, Tony Robbins, Dr. W. Edwards Deming, Malcolm Gladwell, among dozens of others… And more recently a few of the new-age biohackers like Tim Ferriss, Dr. David Perlmutter, and Dave Asprey. Over the years I have compiled my own personal experiences and used them to perfect my own biohacking. My hope is to share some of my experiments and results in this article.

Biohacking actually has tons of aspects and areas… A few of the more popular ones are:

  • Anaerobic Exercise (resistance training)
  • Aerobic Exercise (cardiovascular and endurance training)
  • Food and Nutrition
  • Supplements and Vitamins
  • Prescribed Medication
  • Meditation
  • Deep Breathing
  • Tai Chi and Yoga
  • Light Sources (blue light is scientifically proven to suppress the secretion of melatonin).
  • Fresh/Clean Air
  • Insecticides and Other Poisons and Toxins
  • Sleep and Healing Through Rest
  • Memory and Eliminating Brain Fog
  • Mold Testing
  • Water (how much and filtration type)
  •  

    Soon we (humans) will be including molecular and genetic adjustments through DNA hacking. However, we are only on the initial stage of this level of biohacking.

    Essentially, I biohack myself to improve my overall quality of life by eliminating depression, strengthening my body and immune system, increasing my longevity, eliminating brain fog, and increasing my memory and IQ. Doesn’t that sound cool?

    I have already resolved or cured some issues like joint soreness and aching, stuffy sinuses and allergies, arthritis in my right hand, mid-day sleepiness, better energy levels, and mood swing elimination. All of these fixes were very easy to figure out and then implement. How did I do these things? You ask… Let me tell you a few of my favorite biohacks:

    Years ago I discovered HIT (High Intensity Training) originally created by Arthur Jones and then perfect by Dr. Ellington Darden. Basically it is 27 minutes of extremely intense weight lifting with little to no rest between sets. You do a full-body routine each time, and your reps are time-under-tension meaning you never give the muscle a rest. Each single rep takes between six to twelve seconds to complete (3-6 seconds down and then 3-6 seconds up). It is intense!

    Around the same time, I discovered HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) which differs in that it is a burst of extremely high intensity. These days, my HIIT routine consists of sprinting as fast as possible for 400 meters and then dropping to the ground for sixty to ninety seconds. After one set, I repeat the process two or three times depending on how I feel and what my body can handle. By the way, communicating with your body and understanding what it is telling you is a key part of biohacking!

    Next I started looking at the effects of super hydration and the healthy effects of nutritional adjustment. Initially I was drinking upwards of 180 ounces of water each day. Over time I toned that down a bit and now I find myself drinking around one gallon (128 ounces) of liquid each day (mostly water). I also quickly found that eliminating trans fats was a must-do. My diet and food intake has adjusted over the years. Most recently, I have discovered a form of the Primal and Paleo diets by Dave Asprey that is called the Bulletproof Diet. It aligns nicely with my food loves and my nutritional needs for energy and power. Before starting the Bulletproof Diet my wife and I first used the Whole30 diet to create a baseline and find out if we had any food allergies (i.e. diary, gluten, peanuts, alcohol, sugar, soy, and so on). While I found that I am not allergic to sugar or alcohol, I prefer the way my mind feels when off these things… So, my plan is to eliminate those things once and for all. I’m also steering clear of wheat, oat, and other grain based carbs.

    From a physical and nutritional side, I rounded off my biohack by looking at and trying multitudinous supplements. Lately I have narrowed down to specific ones that get the job done right! I take Protandim Nrf2, NRF1, and PhysIQ Probio from LifeVantage, and feel that it has done amazing things for my muscle and joint soreness. I also feel more vibrant and alive (suffice it to say that I am a bundle of energy). In addition, my mood has improved and I attribute much of it to the proprietary blend in my little yellow pill. Along with Protandim, I also drink one Axio (also by LifeVantage) each day. This has helped lift my early morning “brain fog” and also gives me a healthy (non-jittery) boost. Overall, I feel years younger and simply better. Please send me an email via the contact page if you’d like more info on Protandim or other supplements I take.

    Along with the LifeVantage supplements, I also take doses of Zinc, Potassium, Magnesium, Vitamin D3 (in the Winter), Vitamin C, and Chlorophyll. Note, whenever possible I get my daily Vitamin D from ten to fifteen minutes in the sun; which I think is a much healthier way to get it!

    In addition, I also drink 16-20 ounces of a blenderized Bulletproof Coffee first thing in the morning, a Japanese Matcha tea in the afternoon, and Chamomile (or other sleepy time variant) tea just before bed. I find that this biohack has given me boosted energy first thing and it lasts through the entire day. The best part is, because I am fueling my brain appropriately, when I lay my head down to sleep that is what happens… Comfortable and healthy sleep all night long.

    Speaking of sleep, another biohack I’ve done is to find out the amount of sleep that my body requires. I’ve narrowed this down to 6.5-7 hours (depending on the night) and I use the Sleep Cycle app to wake me when I am coming out of my deep sleep. I find that I leap out of bed these days, because my alarm doesn’t go off at my deep sleep cycle. Soon, I am going to wind my hours back down into the 6 to 6.5 hours, because I’ve had success in that range too.

    My daily dose of grounding (AKA earthing) comes at the same time I do my tai chi; which I do in the grass with bare feet. I find this tackles a few important areas like stretching and deep breathing too.

    Meditation is a huge one for me, and I try to do it twice each day. Sometimes I do three times. Regardless, I meditate every day. If you struggle with meditation, you might want to try an app like Headspace.

    How about DNA testing and genetic evaluations?? My daughter Trinity and I have Type A hemophilia. A year ago, we did genetic testing to find out more detailed information about our specific strain and neat scientific stuff that we really don’t understand… Kristine and I have recently done DNA exams for our health and ancestry background. After thorough research, we used 23 and Me for our test, but there are lots of options available. The process takes between six and eight weeks, so we expect our results in a week or two. We’re very excited to find out what this latest (true) biohack reveals!

    My latest biohack is “dirty light” or blue light, which is becoming more important as we have switched from incandescent to LED and even worse, fluorescent (CFL) bulbs. Science is already established on the ill effects of blue light, especially to our sleep patterns. I am toying with fewer white lights in our house and red lights in areas for nighttime ritual (getting ready for bed). This biohack is fairly new to me, and I’m sure I will perfect my efforts over time, but for now it is a work in progress.

    What’s next on my list? I’m glad you asked… hehe. I am doing some initial DIY mold testing in our home and getting a laboratory evaluation. Obviously we will cross that bridge if we find mold problem areas. So many abnormalities and problem areas have been linked to mold that we feel we cannot overlook this biohack.

    In a nutshell, biohacking is for people who are interested in taking some of the responsibility for improving their lives. All of us biohackers are individuals and often do things a little differently. I encourage you to search for other biohackers and see what they’re doing and how they are improving their lives!

    Regardless, I feel it is imperative that each of us does some form of biohacking to strengthen our bodies, immune system, mind, and increase our energy levels and overall functionality.

    If you biohack, or are interested in becoming a biohacker, I would love to hear from you! Please comment below and let me know what you’re doing and/or what experiences you’ve gone through.

    Thanks for dropping by,
    Vaughn

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