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Health and wellbeing | 02.06.2017

Want to know how to biohack your body and burn fat?

 

My partner and I are into experimenting. 

And now that I have your attention, it's not in the way you are undoubtedly imagining.  

Aside from a daily practice of meditation, we’re interested in biohacking, or working out how to make our bodies more efficient, purposeful machines that can see us feeling younger and healthier for longer.

Right now, he’s in the next room breathing heavily and with purpose and getting incredibly high. Just by using a particular breathing technique.

Next, he’ll hop in the shower and do three cycles of hot and cold, sustaining the cold for up to a minute at a time. Next week it’s cold showers for ten minutes. Yep, even coming into winter in Melbourne. 

I’ve been partaking in both these exercises. Not as vehemently with the breathing stuff, other than my 4-7-8: In-Hold-Out cycle but intermittent hot/cold cycles in the shower.

Crazy perhaps… but there’s science and reasoning behind this apparent madness.  

What's so cool about Wim Hof?

There’s a pretty cool dude out there by the name of Wim Hof. You may have come across him, he’s also known as the Ice Man. He’s the guy who’s defying the normal parameters of the human body and using himself as a living example of what your body can achieve once you discover the flow and learn to control your physical and mental state. 

A devoted Yogi, he’s been experimenting with his body for over four decades. When his wife tragically took her life in 1995, he amped up his investigations for us all to benefit.

It got me thinking that some sort of existential crisis often precludes transformation and greatness. 

The phoenix rising, the caterpillar metamorphosing. Loss, grief, despair, depression and anxiety can send us spiralling into the ashes but on the flip side, we can look for possibilities and find the tools to make our way back out into a different reality. 

What Wim's grief led him to discover is that by training how we breath and by gradually exposing ourselves to cold, we can control our autonomic nervous system, positively influence our immune system and even aid weight loss. 

Stay cool and burn fat

A recent study boosted the theory that when your body experiences cold, it has to change its microbiome. By heating itself up and adjusting your homeostasis, you can potentially burn more calories.  

Our fat cells come in different colours. White fat stockpiles are the most abundant in your body. They help keep your energy up. Brown fat cells burn calories to generate your internal furnace and keep your body temperature stable. They are darker in colour because of the density of mitochondria – the little bitty organelles that generate energy for your cells to perform efficiently.  

Regular cold showers or hydrotherapy specifically targets brown fat. Studies have shown that increases in brown fat were "accompanied by an improvement in insulin sensitivity and energy-burning rate after food."* 

While I’m not quite at the point of walking up Mount Kilimanjaro in my bra and g-string, I’m interested in all the benefits of hydrotherapy, aka cold showers.

 BENEFITS OF COLD SHOWERS

Now I must add here that like most things, when you’re out of the present moment and thinking about something potentially uncomfortable in the future, the thought is often worse than the real thing. More reason to embrace the now. 

I've come to love my hydrotherapeutic showers. I feel alive, invigorated, stimulated and ready to face the day. Oh and one more upside. When you get out of the shower on a cold day, you're so numb you can't feel it.
Ok, so now you're pumped and amped...

here’s the how to: 

Start off slow and tune into your tolerance level and remember to breathe your way through. 

Week 1

 Have your normal warm/hot shower then, for the last 30 seconds blast yourself with cold water.

Week 2

30 seconds warm/hot shower followed by 30 seconds cold. Repeat 3–4 times.

Week 3


1 minute cold shower and then 1 minute hot, followed by 1 minute cold. You'll also discover in week 3 how to slow down time.

Once you’ve completed this 3-week cycle, you can start again or continue with any of the cycles that suit you and your lifestyle.

The point is, we’ve all grown a wee bit comfortable within our cushy, temperature controlled environments. Unless you’re an elite athlete or into extreme sports, you’re not going to be pushing your body to its limitless potential. So what have you got to lose except a few kilos?

Do you ever attempt crazy, extreme biohacks on a regular basis? Share them here and you could win $150 worth of Mukti products of your choice.

Big congratulations to Nat, the winner of the AD Collection special offer. Nat's a regular contributor to the blog and has been through a rather challenging time. She's also a big advocate of the organic movement and educating others about the importance of living an organic lifestyle.

@bymukti

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