2 min|Dr. Maya Kuczma
Integrative’s Favourite BiohacksBiohacking
Integrative’s Favourite Biohacks
Morning Light ExposureGo outside, for at least 5 minutes, within 1 hour of sunrise. Leave the sunglasses at home (but do not stare directly at the sun).
We have an internal clock that controls how sleep hormones are released. This clock is known as the circadian rhythm. Our circadian rhythm is greatly affected by light, and morning light on our eyes is especially important to tell the brain to release specific hormones to help us feel alert and ready for the day. These are called cortisol and epinephrine. Early morning cortisol also helps to balance evening melatonin, (1) which helps us fall asleep and may have a mood boosting effect. (2).
Intermittent FastingDon’t eat. For a while. And then eat, during a specific window of time.
Giving your body a break from food, known as fasting, encourages the body to use stored fat and molecules called ketones instead of sugar for energy. This change can help with weight loss, lower insulin, protect the brain, and reduce swelling and pain. (3) There are different fasting methods, such as:
- Daily fasting window
- Fasting-mimicking diets
- Alternating day fasts
- Multiple days per week of significantly reduced calories
- Fasts that extend beyond 24-hours
At Integrative, many of us prefer the 16:8 method. This is not eating for 16 hours, followed by an 8-hour window where we eat our meals. This is also known as time-restricted eating.
Amp up HydrationHydration = water + electrolytes.
Electrolytes are important minerals that are found in our bodies. Examples of these are calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, phosphate, and chloride, and they play a crucial role in fluid balance, nerve and muscle function, heart and brain activity, and bone strength. When electrolytes are too low we may feel a wide range of symptoms, such as muscle cramps and twitches, irregular heartbeat, dry mouth, waking up in the night to pee, anxiety, headaches, flu-like symptoms, feeling tired, upset stomach, constipation, dizziness, or brain fog. During a workout, on a hot day, or in a sauna, we can lose electrolytes in our sweat. And depending on our diet, it can be tough to get enough electrolytes through the food we eat. At Integrative, our favourite tools to ensure we’re getting enough electrolytes are Hydrator Elite and LMNT.