Biohacking, which essentially involves taking a hands-on, experimental approach to health, is the buzzword in the health sector these days, with more studies proving that what we eat has an enormous impact on how we feel. It is the focus of numerous conventions and workshops these days and if one thing has emerged from these opportunities to share information, it is the importance of approaching health from an integrated perspective. That is, just a few biohacking approaches currying favor with scientists and health professionals include consuming living, wild foods (think veggies plucked from the stem), exposing oneself to sunlight, meditation, gratitude, and nature experiences.
Biohacking involves using nutrition to heal from within, and to prevent heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and the like. It is about choosing not only a healthy life, but a happy one too. In this post we focus on new research that shows we can ‘hack’ our blood pressure and lower the risk of gout, through a specific diet and approach to wellbeing.
The Effect of a Blood Pressure Diet on Gout
Researchers at John Hopkins Medicine found that a diet that is designed to lower blood pressure (i.e. one comprising fruits and vegetables, low-fat dairy, and few fats and saturated fats – i.e. the DASH diet) – not only lowers blood pressure, but also levels of uric acid (which causes gout).
Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis that forms needle-like crystals in joints and causes sudden, severe instances of pain and swelling. Currently, it affects around six million men and two million women in America. Risk factors for gout include eating red meat and shellfish, drinking fructose-rich soda beverages, and being obese.
How does the DASH Diet Positively Biohack Your Body?
Followers of the DASH diet reduce their salt, red meat, sugar, and saturated fat intake, which together has a powerful effect on blood pressure and cholesterol. In the study carried out at John Hopkins, 412 participants consumed either a typical American diet, or followed the DASH diet, for a three-month period.
The results showed that the higher the participants’ uric acid levels were, the more dramatic was the decrease in uric acid, when the DASH approach was employed. Researchers noted that over 70% of people with gout also have high blood pressure. Therefore, it is vital for those battling these diseases to ‘hack’ their system with a diet that targets both simultaneously.
Biohacking has many components and can involve elimination diets, fasting, meditation, keeping gratitude journals and, above all, ‘hacking’ one’s system by using diet to address specific problems, including gout and high blood pressure. Depending on your condition, consider the effect that diet can have on your health and wellbeing, and try to personalize your food consumption to your individual needs.