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The library of essays of Proakatemia

Health?



Kirjoittanut: Tuomas Leinonen - tiimistä Roima.

Esseen tyyppi: Akateeminen essee / 3 esseepistettä.

KIRJALÄHTEET
KIRJA KIRJAILIJA
Parantava Ruoka
Taija Somppi
Jani Somppi
Esseen arvioitu lukuaika on 8 minuuttia.

Introduction

Health these days is a secondary aspect of life. Completely self-explanatory benefits of living in a healthy manner are neglected without much thought. I find it frustrating to see that around me people are treating themselves in a hurtful manner, in many different ways. I have firsthand experience because my actions and lifestyle haven’t always been the best. Currently I’m on a 100 day challenge to be as healthy as I possibly can. At the moment I’m just beginning third week of the challenge, and I feel amazing. But I don’t want to do this for only a 100 days, I want to do this for 20 000 days.

 

I want to be able to have the best energy, mindset, well-being that’s humanely possible. And quite frankly, I don’t understand why everyone wouldn’t want to. I know that it requires lots of discipline and it’s been holding me down in the past. But it seems like only a few people truly understand the potential and benefit of what I am doing. I know this, because more often I am doubted on than cheered on. This essay will clarify why health is important and what you will gain from being healthy.

 

It’s not always about how much information you can gather or how many hours of work you can put in, of course these are the main components of success, and they always will be. However, you being the actor of these actions means that you must have the capability to conquer your obstacles. Being able to facilitate your journey in any way possible should be the main priority, right? If doing something aids you, in your quest to success, you should take advantage of said thing!

 

 

Physiology

What makes you happy in the morning? What gives you the energy to mentally struggle? There are many factors, but an obvious one that is always going to have a positive impact is health and healthy lifestyle. Energy can be given from food, social interactions, status, sense of meaning all sorts of things. A higher energy level and a good balance in our hormones, dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine, is literally going to make you more likely to do better in life. (Huberman 2021.)

 

Having high baseline levels of dopamine will directly make you act out more in the world. Having higher levels of testosterone is going make you more likely to act in the world and do something hard and perhaps even dangerous. In both men and women. (Huberman 2021.)

 

Your current self is the result of DNA, past experiences, and your current state of neurochemistry and physiology. There isn’t a lot more things that add into this equation, having the possibility to be able to alter your neurochemistry seems fascinating to me. We can’t change our past, nor our DNA. What’s left? We can change the way we interact in the world, for example: what we eat and how we sleep. This will result in changes in the only thing that we can control, our physiology. Our current state of physiology determines everything we do and act out during the day. It sets the tone for your voice, makes you smile, makes you miserable. Pushes you forward to get after a daunting task or on the contrary paralyzes you into bed. It is what determines how, when and why in our actions.

 

To optimize this system and to bio hack yourself is just going to be extremely beneficial for your life and for your challenges. Whatever it is that you want to achieve, modulating your well-being into its optimal state is going to serve you better than any other external thing that you can think of.

 

 

Popular methods

There are many TED talks about all sorts of things about how you must be vulnerable and how you must have a mission and a vision. You must be willing to fail, you must trust your peers. Go and develop strong connections with the people you love. Find strength in your community and strive to make your environment a better place. Find balance in your mental health, don’t over push yourself to a point of exhaustion. Find time to rest, don’t care about circumstances just go on with your path. These are the typical advice given to us and while they are great, they really don’t help us that much.

 

How come? These things are extremely difficult to implement into our lives. Like for example I think Brené Brown is full of nonsense. Not because she is wrong, no, she is an undeniable expert in her field of study. No doubt about it. However, she doesn’t give any real executable plan of action to make yourself better. Her TED talks in a nutshell are: You have to be vulnerable to be brave. So go out and live your life in a more vulnerable way and don’t be afraid to expose yourself and your weaknesses. (Brown 2011.)

 

Great! This type of behavior without a doubt would lead to a more fulfilling life, however there is no simple way to do it. You cannot just magically wave a wand, and tell yourself: from now on, whenever I find myself in a stressful situation or in a place where I must be brave I will allow myself to show my vulnerabilities and act out in a brave manner.

 

You might be able to execute this once or twice. Or if you really try hard and make this your number one priority in life you might get somewhere with this. But we as humans tend to forget the advice we were given when shit hits the fan. We don’t remember what we were told and what the research has shown to be a good course of action to take. We act out, according to our current state of physiology.

 

What’s great about bio hacking is that you don’t have to remember to do anything or remember to say something or be a certain way. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t study psychology and take advantage of these great lessons. Brené serves a great purpose in understanding others and yourself. Understanding your psychology as a human is extremely important, but it will not give you instant results in the field of conquest. It’s hard to execute, takes lots of effort and time, but will be worthwhile in the end. However, there are some things that will benefit you almost instantly that are easy to execute and require no development of the persona. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t develop your persona. You should, but get your lifestyle fixed first. (Huberman 2022.)

 

So how do you bio hack yourself to operate on a higher consciousness and energy. Balance, you must juggle many aspects of life to an orderly fashion and not go too crazy with anything. Diet, sleep, social interactions, and physical activity are the main foundations for well-being. Getting these into balance will directly affect the levels of neurochemicals in your brain. And remember, your current self is directly determined by your physiology. Having higher levels of dopamine, serotonin, testosterone etc. and having lower levels of cortisol etc. will directly cause you to act out differently in the world. Doesn’t matter if you’ve watched Brene Brown’s latest Ted talk or not. You simply will have more energy, you are more willing to put effort in life. You are less likely to be irritated or put down by challenges or struggles. Having these components in balance will make you a better person.

 

 

Optimization

I’m not going to go too deep into any of these categories and I’m just not going to write anything about social interactions. But I will talk about a few things that might be new to some people and perhaps serve a purpose.

 

 

Sleep

Sleep is a tough one, because it has everything to do with stress. Some people can’t fall asleep and their efforts to sleep better backfire because they get anxious about not getting enough quality sleep which in turn causes more insomnia.

 

Good quality sleep of 8 hours for most of the nights is directly going to make you a happier person who is more willing to do things. This is quite self-explanatory, and I won’t go further than this into the benefits.

 

How do you achieve good sleep? Getting sunlight into your eyes in the first hour of the morning is going help adjust your circadian rhythm. Don’t look directly into the sun, or any light that hurts your eyes. Just going outside early in the morning is enough. Here in Finland in the winter the sun doesn’t get up so we have to do something else. Using a bright light will help have the same effect, but sunlight is better. On the contrary, in the evening you shouldn’t watch any bright lights and try to limit your exposure to blue light. (Huberman 2022.)

 

 

 

Diet

This one is very confusing. There are so many different ways to go about this and no guarantees to which course of action to take is good and which is bad. Some of the diets out there are: vegan, vegetarian, carnivore, lion diet, paleo, keto and the list just goes on. Each of the diets blaming negative health effects on the excluded foods.

 

With the scientific literature being very unclear and contradicting, there is just a few ways to go about this. What do we know for sure? Processed foods are not healthy. Cut them out. You will be instantly healthier and have less cravings. (Somppi 2016.)

 

What else can we do? Everyone’s metabolism is different and we are so unique that it’s impossible to know what foods will and will not cause negative side effects. If you don’t have any problems with any of the foods you are eating and your blood work shows that everything is fine you probably shouldn’t change anything. However, if you have autoimmune issues or irregular bowl movements etc. You should probably try to exclude some of the foods you are eating and see how you feel. This is just a test you have to do on yourself, see which foods you do well on and which ones you don’t do well on. Get blood work done and monitor your vitamin and hormone levels regularly.

 

Also make sure you get enough fat and protein in your diet. Carbohydrates aren’t really a problem since your body can make them on its own. However, being on a zero carb diet for a long time can cause electrolyte imbalances. For example, after only one week of keto I started to experience this, then I introduced more fruit, berries and honey into my diet and the problems went away. Some people do well on a zero-carb diet. But nobody does well on a low fat and low protein diet.

 

 

Exercise

Just move, really. In any way, go to the gym, take a walk, go for a hike play some tennis whatever. Your body was designed to move, and it was designed for long distance running. Humans are the world’s best long-distance runner out of any animal. The only exception being a certain dog breed that was bred for long-distance running.

 

You were designed to move and run, your body loves it and moving will directly cause you to feel better.

 

 

Summary

I’m tired of people celebrating unhealthy choices. Sleeping for a small amount is expressed with a sense of pride. Not having time to look after yourself is seen as hard working. People arriving to the school hungover still intoxicated is something to be proud of. Yeah, what a strong individual. Any stupid person can go out drinking and come to school tired. A person who looks after him/herself will always prioritize feeling good the next day over a night out of intoxication.

 

I understand being young and having a fear of missing out and having fun for sure. But in moderation and sooner or later drinking should stop completely or almost completely. Our culture is kind of messed up in this regard. Like I think we’ve beat cigarettes culturally. Our team doesn’t have any smokers. Some people in their youth might remember when smoking cigarettes was seen as cool, at least that’s how it felt like when you did it. Now it’s more like sad to see an adult still addicted to them. I wonder when alcohol will be looked upon in the same demeanor.

 

Enough of the ranting, happy biohacking!

 

Sources

Huberman. A. 2021. Podcast. Controlling your dopamine for motivation, focus & satisfaction.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QmOF0crdyRU

 

Huberman. A. 2022. Podcast. Optimize your brain chemistry.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T65RDBiB5Hs

 

T, Somppi & J, Somppi. 2016. Parantava Ruoka. Gummerys.

 

B, Brown. 2011. Tedtalk. The power of vulnerability.

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