Hack Your Metabolism. Aging is inevitable, but it’s also one of the main reasons we get sick. Our bodies naturally start taking more and more time to recover, our metabolism starts slowing down, and cells have a harder time rejuvenating. That leaves plenty of room for our bodies to start making unintentional mistakes on a cellular level, increasing our risk of disease and infection.
David Sinclair, A.O., Ph.D. one of the top scientists and researchers in the aging field is known for his Information Theory of Aging, which is based on the premise that aging is the result of losing essential instructions that your cells need to continue functioning.
So, how can we hack our metabolism to slow down the aging process and why does it play such a huge role in our lifespan?
Metabolism and Metabolic Aging
Metabolism is our bodies’ natural process of producing and using energy in order to power up all the cells and ensure they function optimally. Your metabolism governs everything, from your sleep and wake-up cycle to food digestion and burning calories. It includes a series of actions and reactions that occur on the cellular level in order to keep you alive.
Probably the most important component of metabolism, and the one that is a crucial indicator of your overall health, is your basal metabolic rate, or BMR. BMR stands for the amount of energy your body burns in order to perform the most basic functions that keep you alive, like breathing, digesting food, and heart beating. It’s the number of calories your body burns if you literally do nothing all day long but lie in bed and not move.
When compared to the BMR of other people within your age group, you can get to your metabolic age, and it can and doesn’t have to correlate with your biological, chronological age. As you age, your body starts producing less and less energy as the cells don’t have the ability to use it as efficiently. This shows up in your BMR as it slowly starts to descend, generally around 1-2% every decade.
Your metabolic age can be an indicator of many possible diseases and health conditions, as studies show how aging and a decrease in your BMR can increase the risk of obesity. This is where following a healthy lifestyle plays a crucial role in preventing the development of metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and a variety of cardiovascular diseases.
What is Biohacking?
Biohacking is defined by a wide range of tools and changes a person can choose to make or try on their own bodies in order to slow down aging and improve their health and longevity. Usually, the goal is to lengthen their lifespan by measuring, tracking, and analyzing how their bodies function in order to make the right decisions to stay healthy for as long as possible.
Examples of biohacking include wearable and trackable technologies, biohacking supplements, biohacking sessions like cryotherapy and vitamin-infused IVs, implanted devices that monitor your blood sugar levels, and more.
Some of the most successful people of today are using biohacking methods to improve their health and fitness and lower their metabolic age so that they can keep producing and using high levels of energy for years to come. The longer your cells can perform at the most optimal level, the longer you’ll be able to resist diseases, fight inflammation, and postpone the inevitable consequences of aging.
How to Biohack Your Metabolism?
If figuring out how to maintain a good BMR rate for a longer period of time is the goal, there are some great biohacking techniques to help you get there. One of them is your ability to achieve metabolic flexibility.
Metabolic flexibility refers to your body’s ability to convert food into energy with the utmost efficiency, successfully preventing cellular damage caused by free radicals, and fighting infections. It’s also your body’s ability to switch between carbohydrates and fats for fuel without causing a completely alarming situation in your body.
People whose bodies depend only on carbs for fuel are at a higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, obesity, and diabetes, and for them, it’s even more crucial to exercise their metabolic flexibility to a point where they can reduce their overall inflammation and help their bodies make the fuel switch.
When looking to biohack your metabolism, there are plenty of ways to go about it – here are some of the best ways to start:
- Maintain a healthy body mass index by staying within a healthy body fat percentage. This may look different on different people so don’t take other people’s numbers as your reference. Talk to your healthcare provider, nutritionist, or holistic practitioner, and figure out what is a healthy range for you.
- Eat a healthy diet that’s minimal or absent from processed foods, alcohol, excess sugars, and trans fats.
- Focus on fitness and keeping as much lean muscle tissue as possible as you’ll be better adapted to burning fat and therefore, have more energy as a result. This can be achieved through lifestyle changes that will help you become a healthier version of yourself, long-term.
- Include a variety of superfoods in your diet as they’re rich in powerful micronutrients like vitamins, minerals, and a variety of antioxidants that help your body fight against free radicals and oxidative damage. They can also help boost your immune response and lower your overall inflammation, reducing your risk of infections and disease. Some of the foods that are the highest in antioxidants include berries, cacao powder, maca powder, cruciferous vegetables, and
- Maintain low levels of cholesterol and keep your blood pressure in a healthy range.
- Keep your blood sugar levels on the down low by stabilizing your insulin and keeping your oxidative stress down. As you age, your body becomes less and less sensitive to insulin and high glucose levels can chronically elevate your blood sugar, leaving you prone to inflammation and cellular damage. The best way to keep your blood sugar levels down is to focus on a healthy diet, move your body, improve your sleep quality, and manage your stress levels on a daily basis. You can also get a continuous glucose monitor or a CGM which measures your glucose levels in real-time and helps you get more information on which foods spike up your blood glucose and which don’t, so you can make smarter and better choices.
Biohacking technologies, techniques, and tools that help you transform your health and well-being in order to live longer and stay healthy for as long as possible start with incremental changes that can easily be done in the comfort of your own home. While getting a wearable tracker or a CGM is great, it’s not completely necessary. Start with the basics and focus on improving your diet and exercise – you’ll already be doing plenty!