3 Ways To Biohack Safely, According To Molly Maloof, M.D.
These days, it's not uncommon for people to strive to be more proactive about their health and prevent diseases before even the preliminary signs of an illness arise. Molly Maloof, M.D., a personalized medicine physician and one of our speakers at this year's revitalize event, works with the top Silicon Valley investors and executives on how to seek empowerment and prescribe health in all aspects of life—not just for the body but for the mind and community around us.
On this episode of the mindbodygreen podcast, I was lucky enough to sit down with Maloof and chat about how we can truly optimize our health rather than trying to seek quick fixes whenever we're feeling not so great. After we discussed whether psychedelics can have a role in medicine, as well as how she sees the future of the industry shifting, it's clear that Maloof has an unparalleled view on how we can take control of our well-being.
One way she mentions we can ensure a healthy body and mind is by biohacking safely and effectively. "Biohacking is an opportunity to go beyond sickness billing and waiting to be broken and learning how to identify the earliest markers of disease," she told me. "It's bringing tools that have been used in mainstream medicine but applying them to optimize health."
In this episode of the podcast, you'll hear all about Maloof's stance on which wellness practices we should maintain and add to our lives to maximize health. But for now, here are Maloof's tips on how to ease your way into biohacking. What's more, all three of these biohacks are safe, sustainable, and absolutely free. Get ready to truly optimize your well-being.
1. Start interval training.
Giving your body spurts of high-intensity cardio is one way Maloof suggests is beneficial for optimizing the health of your mitochondria.
Not particularly fond of running? Don't fret—Maloof has worked her way up to sprints herself, and she recommends doing the same if you're just beginning to hop on the HIIT bandwagon. Even starting small, with just one sprint, is enough to send healthy signals to your mitochondria.
And if you absolutely refuse to hit the pavement, Maloof assures us there are other options to get your heart rate high and your mitochondria up to speed. "Biogenesis is stimulated by high-intensity interval training, but also weightlifting will do that," she says.
2. Implement fasting in your routine.
While part of biohacking safely is done by adding healthy stimulants to your mitochondria, Maloof also suggests the opposite is necessary in order to optimize health.
"Mitophagy, which is throwing out the bad batteries, is stimulated by fasting," she says. Just as how we're supplying our body with energy from bursts of cardio, part of biohacking safely and effectively is to withhold these certain stimulants. And similar to interval training practices, it's best to work your way up to a fast as well.
The concept of intermittent fasting (and the process of working your way up to a 16-hour fast) has become a wildly popular practice, and according to Maloof, it's no secret why. "You're cross-training your metabolism," she says, alluding to the fact that it's always best to prepare your metabolism for any upcoming issues you may face in life.
3. Surround yourself with nature.
It's been previously studied that spending time in nature can have significant effects on our mental health, and Maloof asserts that this connection is also integral for our physical well-being.
"Being exposed to green space is nourishing for our minds, and we don't have enough of it in our lives," Maloof states.
As we know, a healthy mind-body connection is integral for optimizing our health, so interacting with nature in order to protect our mental health is just as important of a biohack as running and fasting. And again, spending time in nature is safe, free, and sustainable.
All three of Maloof's tips are essential for preparing our bodies for any health-related issue that may come our way. Rather than tackling problems as they arise, Maloof suggests that these safe biohacks are proactive ways to ensure healthy living. Our illnesses may even be a product of overlooking these simple lifestyle practices, in fact. Maloof agrees, as she states, "All of our chronic lifestyle diseases are rooted in inactivity, overeating, too much stress, and lack of connection to oneself and one's community.”
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