Biohacking first entered the scene in the San Francisco programmer and maker communities as early as 2005, through simple demonstrations of basic experiments. The idea behind this movement was to democratize science and innovation. Due mainly to the completion of the Human Genome Project in 2003, an increase in chronic lifestyle-related diseases, a disenchantment with the current medical model and a keen focus on personalisation - biohacking seems to be growing in popularity in 2018.
Do-it-yourself biology has introduced a new paradigm; that wellness is more than "not being sick" but more about the optimisation of YOU.
It's clear to see that by enabling and empowering people to take charge of their bodies, we may have finally tapped into a method of helping people to be healthier.
Recently, Vitality Health in South Africa shared the results of their points system which is underpinned by tracking devices such as the Apple watch and FitBit. Their research showed that people who tracked their vitals, where 30% more compliant towards wellness goals that people who don't. We are onto something!
This TED talk is a little old by biohacking standards, but it is a great intro to the idea:
At JOINCIRCLES, we see the direct-to-consumer model playing an important role in increasing access to biohacking tools by placing the science directly in the hands of the consumer. Our approach to biohacking follows 5 simple steps:
- Start with a DNA test - having info on your unique genotype will reveal your genetic predispositions towards inflammation, lipid metabolism, insulin resistance, detox, oxidative stress, methylation, bone health, thyroid dysfunction, addictions, estrogen metabolism, and neurodegeneration. Order your test online.
- Measure and track annually will advanced, functional biochemistry tests to see whether you need to focus your daily choices.
- Personalise your food, supplement, beauty and lifestyle choices based on your genotype and biochemistry
- Consult various experts to help you refine your protocol. This can be a practitioner, NPL experts, wellness coach, gym instructor, dietician, reflexologist etc
- Add in tracking tools to help you stay focused and in the know.
I became a biohacker not by choice but by fate. After my diagnosis of ovarian cancer at age 36 in 2010, I began my journey with the objective of preventing a recurrence of my cancer. Today, armed with key insights into my unique body, I am more excited about biohacking my way into my future more than ever before. I am keen to see what else becomes available to add in and increase my knowledge.
It seems to me that when we came up with our slogan 'My DNA. My Choices' we were starting you on your own biohacking journey too.