Biohacking is the process of making changes to your lifestyle in order to “hack” your body’s biology and feel your best.
You know the saying, “You are what you eat”? That actually applies to humans in a broader sense:
History of Biohacking
“Biohacking” is a broad term that refers to a number of different things. Historically, the term was mentioned in a 1988 article in the Washington Post discussing biotechnology being brought to the masses in the form of “fiddling with the genetic code of a living organism.” (1)
More recently, experts like Ben Greenfield and Dave Asprey have developed an art when it comes to biohacking. By sharing their experiences, “hacks” and products, they hope to help followers manipulate nutrition, fitness and lifestyle to improve their health.
Everything we put into our bodies — our foods, our thoughts, our physical movement — all affect how we behave. By biohacking yourself, you can actually transform your body so that you feel more energized, be more productive and, overall, feel like the best possible version of yourself.
It doesn’t have to involve being a mad scientist and running crazy experiments with your body. Instead, it means using various hacks to see what works best for you (which could be very different from what works for Susan down the street!) and using it to #liveyourbestlife (unironically!). You stick with the things that work for you, and ditch the ones that don’t. After all, when it comes to how your body feels, you’re the expert!
Types of Biohacking
Typically, biohacking falls into three categories: nutrigenomics, do-it-yourself biology and grinder biohacking.
1- Nutrigenomics is simply the study of nutritionally manipulating the activity of your body. (1) This is also related to other sub-categories in biohacking like sleep manipulation, exercise, attention hacking, adjusting environmental triggers (like sound and light) and stress management.
This type of biohacking is really just building on the concept that our bodies are ever-changing, and using these discoveries to live better. Food, activity and various stimuli alter your body’s function and nutrigenomics involves learning how these interactions work.
2- Do-it-yourself biology (DIYBio) is a biohacking subculture of people who conduct biological experiments and study life sciences outside of conventional means, a movement started in the early 2000s. Many “teachers” in this crusade are formal educators or scientific researchers who want to show the average Joe how to conduct experiments. While this is a fascinating movement, this subset of biohacking is focused more on studying and testing unproven science and is often criticized for having no official oversight.
3- Grinder biohacking is a subset of DIYBio that fixates on technology implants or chemical manipulation of the body. Grinders attempt to push the limits of technology and the human body to their limits, practicing body modification to improve their “hardware.” These are typically very risky techniques, and I don’t personally recommend this habit.
8 Ways to Biohack Yourself Today
1. Try an elimination diet
2. Kick sugar to the curb
3. Change when you’re eating
4. Sleep more
5. Eat fat — lots of it
6. Zone out with meditation
7. Kick off your shoes
8. Get up, stand up