Biohacking: How to Biohack Your Body to Enhance Your Creative Thinking

Discover biohacking techniques that can enhance creativity and physical performance. Learn how diet, tech, and lifestyle tweaks can boost your creative mind.

Matt By Matt
16 Min Read

In simple terms, biohacking is a term used to describe a growing list of tips and tricks used to enhance the body’s ability to function at peak physical and mental performance, with some professional suggesting they could extend one’s lifespan.

Central to this concept is the belief that we can proactively interact with our own biology to elevate our physical and mental performance. An intriguing aspect of biohacking lies in the promise of boosting creative thinking—a valuable asset in virtually any domain of life.

By adopting certain biohacks, individuals may discover improvements in their ability to generate novel ideas, solve problems creatively, and approach tasks with innovative thinking.

Biohacking could literally change the world as we know it.

Ryan Bethencourt

These biohacking techniques range from simple lifestyle adjustments to more advanced methods involving technology and self-monitoring. For example, by altering diet, exercise, and sleep patterns, biohackers aim to optimise their bodily functions and mental acuity.

More sophisticated approaches might involve nootropic supplements or employing biofeedback mechanisms to fine-tune cognitive processes. While the potential for enhancing creativity through biohacking is vast, it’s essential to approach these practices with a mindful awareness of the ethical considerations and safety implications involved.

My experience with biohacking, particularly with adaptogenic mushroom drinks, has shown that it is indeed a powerful tool for personal development, provided it’s used responsibly and with a well-informed perspective.

Key Takeaways

  • Biohacking practices can be adopted to improve creative thinking and cognitive function.
  • Lifestyle changes and the use of technology are common methods to enhance biological and mental capabilities.
  • Responsible application and knowledge of biohacking is imperative for safe self-improvement.

Foundations and Benefits of Biohacking

Biohacking represents the forefront of merging technology with human biology, aiming to enhance the capabilities of mind and body. By understanding its foundations and benefits, I’ve so far been able to unlock benefits centred around improved creativity and mental function.

Defining Biohacking

Biohacking for me is my personal experimentation with biological systems, often combining aspects of the DIY (do-it-yourself) biology movement, genetics, and technology. By tweaking my diet and lifestyle my aim is to optimise my body’s performance and health to help me with running my business and overall quality of life.

Biohacking: The Intersection of Biology and Technology

Advancements in neuroscience and technology has enabled an entire community to take a data-driven approach to personal wellness. A simple example might be smartwatch wearables (ie. FitBit or Apple Watch) that monitor biometrics.

Insights into stem cells and genetics have also spurred biohacking efforts, enabling not just preventative health strategies but also the enhancement of cognitive abilities, leading to more innovative and creative thinking.

Biohacking Techniques for Enhanced Creativity

Biohacking combines biology with hackery to leverage our body’s potential. I’ve explored several biohacking strategies that have potential to remarkably enhance your creative thinking process.

Diet and Intermittent Fasting

Diet greatly influences my cognitive function. Consuming nootropics like caffeine in moderation can increase alertness and concentration.

 

Every morning since the Covid lockdowns I have incorporate an adapted version of bulletproof coffee, which blends caffeine with butter and MCT Oil, to provide a steady energy release. Moreover, intermittent fasting sharpens my mental clarity by regulating glucose levels, which can positively impact creative thinking.

Functional Music

Listening to functional music, such as binaural beats music, has the power to direct our brains into a state conducive to creative thinking. Certain rhythms and frequencies can help us enter a flow state where ideas can flourish.

By curating playlists that enhance cognitive performance on Spotify, I’ve been able to effectively embark on tasks requiring high levels of focus.

Meditation and Mindfulness

Meditation strengthens my mind’s focus and clarity, paving the way for innovative thought. I practice mindfulness as often as possible to reduce mental clutter, enabling me to channel my thoughts toward creative endeavours.

This consistent mental practice enhances my REM sleep, thereby improving sleep quality and cognitive processes linked to creativity.

Gratitude – Biohacking your Mindset

Adopting an attitude of gratitude has helped to positively reconfigure my mindset, creating a fertile foundation for improved creativity.

Expressing thankfulness regularly, even for the smallest things in my life, has rewired my brain to identify things that bring my joy, peace and comfort. It has helped improve a long term habit of negative self-talk.

Sleep Optimisation

Adequate and high-quality sleep is non-negotiable for creative thinking.

By biohacking my sleep routine, focusing on sleep quality and optimising my bedroom environment for REM sleep, I do my best to give my brain and body what it needs most – rest.

I’ve found that maintaining a consistent sleep schedule enhances my brain’s ability to approach problems inventively.

However out all of the improvements I’ve tried to make in my life, sleep optimisation I have found to be the hardest. I find it really difficult quietening my mind, a brain that has been so busy all day.

Quantifying Self-Improvement

I’ve come to realise that to accurately measure improvement, one must rely on hard data. It’s about understanding the changes through quantifiable means.

Wearable Technology and Data

I’ve found that wearable technology has revolutionised how I measure my progress.

Smartwatches like the Apple Watch and Garmin devices, alongside fitness trackers such as Fitbit, WHOOP, and the Oura Ring, play a pivotal role. They collect data throughout the day and night, providing insights into my physical activities, sleep patterns, and heart rate.

 

My wearable of choice, my Apple Watch, syncs with my smartphone, allowing me to examine my personal metrics in real-time, to see trends over weeks and months.

I tend to use the heart rate monitor, sleep monitor and ECG the most, to keep me informed about my daily activity levels and anxiety, nudging me to move if I’ve been inactive for too long, or if I need to take a break.

Biometric Tracking and Analysis

Biometric tracking extends beyond simple wearables. Advanced gadgets like a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) are able to track blood glucose levels to see how diet affects our overall energy and health.

Services such as InsideTracker dig deep into biomarkers, providing a detailed look at my blood data and offering customised recommendations.

This meticulous tracking and analysis allow users to understand their unique physiological needs and adapt their biohacking strategies accordingly.

For example, by analysing my sleep data, I learned how to modify my bedtime routine for better restorative sleep, which, in turn, usually enhances my creativity the next day.

Lifestyle Adjustments for Longevity

In my experience, focusing on diet, exercise, stress management, sleep hygiene and anxiety management have been the most impactful.

These aspects are like two sides of the same coin, with a balanced approach leading to significant health benefits.

Exercise and Physical Activity

I make it a priority to include regular exercise in my routine, as it’s been shown to support heart rate, anxiety and blood pressure regulation.

I personally do HiiT Training 2-3 times per week for around 40 minutes each session, blended with a small round of weight training, dog walks and weekend afternoon’s out in Central London with my camera.

By engaging in activities such as brisk walking, cycling, or swimming for at least 150 minutes weekly, I also aim to reduce inflammation—a key factor in aging.

  • Frequency: Aim for good levels of exercise at least 5 days a week.
  • Intensity: Moderate to vigorous.
  • Type: Mix of cardio and strength training.
  • Duration: Minimum of 30 minutes per session.

Stress Management and Recovery

I’ve learned that managing stress goes hand in hand with physical activity for achieving a longer healthspan.

Techniques like meditation and breathing exercises contribute to stress reduction. As for recovery, I sometimes opt for a cold shower, which may help in lowering inflammation and supporting recovery. It’s also good for skin.

  • Daily relaxation: It’s recommended to incorporate at least 10 minutes of meditation or deep-breathing.
  • Recovery options: Use cold exposure (cold shower) or a hyperbaric chamber once a week to encourage muscle recuperation.
  • Monitor: Keep track of heart rate variability to assess stress levels and recovery needs. Don’t push yourself too far – know your own limits. Each person is different.

Ethical and Safety Considerations in Biohacking

When exploring biohacking, ethical and safety considerations are critically important as the changes you make can have profound effects on your health and well-being.

Grinders

Biohacking enthusiasts, sometimes referred to as ‘grinders‘, employ a variety of techniques that can range from simple dietary changes to the implantation of devices like magnets and chips under their skin.

These more extreme practices raise questions about the long-term safety and ethical implications of self-directed biological augmentation.

I personally I have no intention of exploring this part of biohacking.

Do-It-Yourself Biology – The Risks

In the world of do-it-yourself biology, or DIY bio, safety can also be a big concern if things are taken too far. The enthusiasm for self-experimentation among grinders exposes them to various risks, including infection, bodily harm, and adverse reactions.

For example, implanting magnets without sterile conditions can lead to infections, and the unregulated use of nootropics—substances that may enhance cognitive function—could result in unforeseen health complications.

The potential for self-harm inadvertently underscores the need for extreme caution. Furthermore, it is important to stress that without careful consideration, interventions might negatively impact one’s overall health and well-being.

Regulatory Landscape

When researching the regulatory landscape, legislation is struggling to keep pace with the rapid advancements in biohacking. In places like Silicon Valley, where biohacking is gaining traction, the lack of clear guidelines from US authorities poses concerns.

The FDA typically regulates medical devices and interventions, but many biohacking gadgets and procedures fall into grey areas. This lack of clarity can lead to unsafe practices and ethical dilemmas.

I think it’s important for current regulations to adapt and provide a framework that ensures public safety without stifling creativity and innovation. The intersection of biohacking and ethics needs a wider discourse to establish what can potentially enhance human capabilities while remaining ethically acceptable.

Frequently Asked Questions

In this section, I’ll address common questions about how biohacking can improve creative thinking through dietary changes, recommended foods, useful supplements, available products, influential figures, and the core principles.

How can biohacking influence one’s diet to enhance cognitive function?

Biohacking advocates for personalised nutrition to optimise brain function. By adjusting my diet to include nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and vitamins, I can potentially improve my cognitive abilities and foster creativity.

What variety of foods are recommended for individuals engaging in biohacking?

For someone involved in biohacking, it’s beneficial to consume foods such as leafy greens, berries, nuts, and fatty fish. These foods are known to support brain health and may enhance mental performance.

Which supplements are most beneficial for biohackers looking to boost their creativity?

Supplements like Ginkgo Biloba, Bacopa Monnieri, and creatine have been researched for their potential to support cognitive functions and thereby aid in creative processes. But also more common supplements such as Magnesium, Iron, Ashwagandha and Zinc can play a significant part in body optimisation.

What products are available on the market that support biohacking practices?

There are myriad products aimed at biohackers, ranging from nootropics for cognitive enhancement to wearable tech that monitors physiological data to inform lifestyle adjustments.

Who are some of the leading figures in the biohacking community and what have they contributed?

Notable figures include Dave Asprey, known for popularising Bulletproof Coffee, and Dr. Rhonda Patrick, who provides in-depth insights on nutrition and its effects on health, which can aid fellow biohackers. It’s also worth looking up Vishen Lakhiani, CEO of Mindvalley, who features in the first video in this guide.

What are the underlying principles that guide the practice of biohacking?

The principles of biohacking centre on self-experimentation and the use of data-driven approaches to understand one’s body and iteratively improve its functions, including fostering a more creative mind.

What are the three main types of biohacking?

As discussed in this guide there are various forms of biohacking. Other popular types include DIY biology, grinders and nutrigenomics.

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By Matt
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I'm the Creative Director at Bona Parle. I'm also a freelance portrait and headshot photographer, award-winning filmmaker, film Colourist and a multi-award winning LGBTQ+ human rights campaigner. For part of my week I lead a successful UK-based charity that brings families closer to together.