What is Biohacking Your Body and How Everyone Can Get Involved

What is Biohacking Your Body and How Everyone Can Get Involved

This article was written by Sophie Atkinson
In a world where the wellness market is booming, self-care practices have become a focus, and people are deep diving into their health, biohacking has led to a whole movement over the past decade.

Now, more than ever, it seems people are interested in becoming the healthiest and best versions of themselves.

According to a study by McKinsey, around 50 percent of US consumers now report wellness as a top priority in their day-to-day lives which is a 42 percent increase from 2020.

Against the backdrop of a global pandemic and with the intertwining of health and technology, biohacking has risen in popularity.
 

What Exactly Is Biohacking?

 

Sometimes referred to as ‘do-it-yourself’ biological improvements, biohacking is the practice of incorporating methods from biology, genetics, neuroscience, and nutrition to enhance physical or mental performance.

This includes boosting overall health and wellbeing. There’s no step-by-step instructions to correctly biohack, as it’s a whole process of making lifestyle changes to ‘hack’ your body’s biology.

 

The History and Evolution of Biohacking

 

Biohacking was once a small and local initiative, rather than the transnational movement that we now know it as.

It started in early 2008 when a discussion forum was launched with 32 members. The first meeting was held at a pub in Boston with 25 people in attendance. Today, the discussion forum includes over 5000 members worldwide, but that doesn’t include all of the unofficial members who simply follow the health trend from afar.

Research does suggest people were focusing on their health in a similar biohacking way before 2008 too, with terms like ‘garage biology’ and ‘DIY biology’ circulating in the early 2000s. In 2005, biologist Rob Carlson was reported as saying: “The advent of garage biology is at hand. Skills and technology are proliferating, and the synthesis and manipulation of genomes are no longer confined to ivory towers.”

Now, in the present day, technology has advanced significantly which has helped the movement along. Wearable devices are becoming more affordable and increasingly popular amongst society - not just the health conscious.

 
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Biohacking Techniques for Your Body

 

There’s no perfect guide when embarking on the biohacking journey as almost anything can be considered as long as it fulfills the goal of enhancing biology in some way.

 

Nutritional Biohacking


This is all about getting the right nutrients in your diet which often involves the use of natural and synthetic molecules to achieve this.

This is where supplements and vitamins come in. Common supplement choices include Omega-3s, Probiotics, and Vitamin D3 but the use of supplements should be carefully selected according to specific needs.


Exercise and Fitness Biohacking

 
Exercise and fitness biohacking.


Even though the phenomenon of biohacking is relatively new, athletes have been fine-tuning their training for decades to give themselves a competitive edge whether that's in performance or recovery.

Exercise can be an incredible biohack as being active improves cellular energy metabolism and promotes the creation of new mitochondria.

Going beyond this, fitness-related biohacking includes the likes of red light therapy for post-workout recovery, the use of heat therapy and saunas, pre-workout drinks for optimum performance, and smart watches for feedback.

 

Sleep Optimization


Sleep should be restorative as it gives our body a chance to recover, but when we’re not getting adequate sleep it can leave you feeling out of whack.

To biohack sleep, try and stick to a consistent schedule as this can help regulate the body’s sleep-wake cycle. A balancing of the circadian rhythm is also in order which starts at the very beginning of the day - instead of scrolling through social media when you wake up, head outside and into the sunlight within 30-60 minutes of waking up.

At the other end of the day, avoid blue light as much as possible as this can interfere with the body’s production of the hormone that helps regulate sleep known as melatonin. Blue light glasses are another option.


Stress Management Techniques


When the brain isn’t happy, performance in all ways can be lacking. That’s why treating the mind should be just as important as the body.

Chronic stress can bring on diseases, increase blood pressure, and cause deregulation of the nervous system.

To counteract this through biohacking, breathwork and meditation can be completed on a daily basis to reduce high cortisol levels. This is incredibly beneficial as the way we breathe can alter the stress response. When cortisol is secreted, our breathing becomes more shallow and rapid which then starts the signaling that we should be worried.

 

Biohacking Tools and Technologies


Wearable Devices

 
Smart watches, wearable devices for biohacking.


Smart watches were one of the first wearable biohacking devices to go mainstream. The Apple Watch and FitBit pushed wearable technology into the forefront which propelled a whole lot of other technology to be created in this form.

Other examples include blue light glasses, fertility trackers, smart rings, period pain relief devices, and even red light therapy tools.

While not all red light therapy devices allow you to experience enhanced tissue regeneration, muscle recovery, and pain management on the go - Kineon’s MOVE+ Pro has a strap so you can gain targeted benefits whilst going about your day.

 

Genetic Testing and Analysis


Genetic testing can provide insights into predispositions to certain health conditions, dietary sensitives, or even responses to exercises. In some cases, this information would be almost impossible to glean without testing.

Once this data comes back from a lab, it can be used to change and personalize diet, fitness, and lifestyle choices to ensure optimum health.

These are usually done through collecting saliva which is then tested in a laboratory but while this would have typically required paying over the odds and visiting a specific clinic some years ago, it’s now more accessible and can be done at home.


Nutritional Supplements and Nootropics


Nootropics are a type of natural drug that can have a positive impact on mental skills. They can be prescribed by doctors or even ordered online, as can a wide range of supplements.

As an example, iron supplements are widely available for those who are deficient. There’s a huge variety, all of which serve different purposes but are used to boost health or get in some much-needed nutrients that might be missed.


Biofeedback and Monitoring Devices


Again, biofeedback devices were once confined to the four walls of a clinic or hospital. Now though, these are more affordable and accessible to the general public.

These are non-invasive monitoring equipment and instruments that measure the body’s involuntary functions - like the heart rate, breathing, and muscle tension. Hormone monitoring tools would fall into this category too. With these devices, a much greater level of detail can be explored.

 

How Anyone Can Get Into Biohacking

 

 

If you’re just getting started in your biohacking journey, consider starting small with some easy changes to your diet, daily routine, and mindset.

 

Diet


‘You are what you eat,’ as the old saying goes. Everything we put into our bodies can influence the way we behave so it’s important you deep dive into what types of food your body prefers.

This will be different for everyone but generally, you should eat more fruit and vegetables, more whole foods, fewer processed foods, and less added sugar and refined grains.

Whether you’re looking to increase gains in the gym or simply looking for more fulfilling meals that leave you feeling full on a long shift, the types of foods you eat greatly impact this. For example, fish has been found to have strong effects on satiety whereas chicken is widely used in the gym community due to its high protein content.


Exercise


There’s no point having fancy gadgets and tech if you’re not moving your body every day.

As a general goal, you should aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity every day. This could mean going for a walk around the neighborhood, following along to a YouTube workout, or joining a spin class.

It would be a good idea to keep track of what exercises you do and how they make your body feel. Some opt for just weightlifting in their routines while others choose pilates and cardio.

Start with what you enjoy and see how your body reacts.


Mindfulness

 
Mindfulness for biohacking.


Meditation is often described as being one of the most basic forms of biohacking as it’s free and can be completed by anyone.

This ancient practice helps you train your brain to focus on a thought, as well as being mindful and more present. Practicing mindfulness in general could involve breathing methods, guided imagery, or other practices to relax the body and mind.

 

Your Questions on Biohacking

 

What Is a Biohacker?

 

A biohacker is someone who customizes their diet and/or lifestyle to optimize their health. This person follows biohacking and makes changes to improve their mind and body.

This could be through using a red light therapy device for post-workout recovery, wearing a smart device that collects data about the body, or making changes to their diet to be more beneficial for their lifestyle.

 

What Is a Biohacking Diet?


Unlike food-focused diets, the biohacking diet doesn’t follow specifics or limit you to just eating one type of food for a period of time. Instead, the biohacking diet means creating a personalized nutrition plan that suits your personal needs.

To determine what should be included, you’ll have to experiment and use an elimination-style method if you’re struggling with food-related health issues. This means cutting out potential offenders and then slowly adding them back in to see if they’re the culprits.

Keeping a food journal is another way to see what types of food work best for you. You could use tracking tech and wearable devices and even consider genetic testing.

The biohacking diet isn’t a one-size-fits-all guided plan, it’s more of a concept and one that has to be tailored to each individual.

 

What Is Biohacking Technology


Biohacking technology makes it easier than ever to implement health-boosting tactics that make your body and mind feel stronger.

This form of technology includes tools and wearables that span biology, genetics, neuroscience, and nutrition. For example, some smart watches capture biometric data that breaks down strenuous exertion, stress signals, and sleep performance. This information can be used to better your health and make changes that matter.

Red light therapy devices are another form of biohacking technology as the wavelengths of light trigger a series of events in the cells that block pain signal transmissions, reduce inflammation, and accelerate healing in post-recovery.

 

Start Biohacking Today

 

While it sounds overwhelming to begin with, as the combination of possibilities is endless, starting small is advised.

If you’ve found your gut to be triggered by certain foods, start by analyzing what you’re putting into your body through the elimination technique to find what you should and shouldn’t be eating.

Similarly, if fitness performance is a priority, consider the use of a red light therapy device. When applied to the skin, the wavelengths of light trigger a series of events at the cellular level. It can speed up the body’s natural healing mechanisms which is huge for post-workout recovery while enhancing tissue regeneration, collagen remodeling, and angiogenesis.

With wearable devices like the Kineon MOVE+ Pro, you can tailor the device’s application and intensity to suit your own preferences and needs, helping you to build a recovery programme that works for you. This can be completed on your own time and in the comfort of your own home.


For more articles on biohacking read:
Headshot of Sophie Atkinson: Kineon's Women's Health and Wellness Writer

Sophie Atkinson

Job Title: Women's Health and Wellness Writer
LinkedIn: @Sophie_Atkinson
Location: United Kingdom
Bio: Sophie Atkinson is a journalist and content writer. Sophie went straight into the newsroom, after graduating with a BA (Hons) degree in Journalism. She has since gone on to work as a freelancer for a range of brands worldwide. Her work has included a focus on several topics around women’s health, with the aim of putting a stop to the taboo culture surrounding certain subjects and health issues

About Kineon

Bringing the latest advancements in enhanced red light therapy for home use. Our mission is to get you back on your feet and moving pain-free.

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