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Do you often feel low in energy? Do you diet and exercise but the results just aren’t there? What if you could hack your body and brain to work in your favor? Senior investigative producer Leslie Marcus visits a place that promises to do just that and save you time in the process!
Bulletproof Labs looks like a training ground for astronauts but this biohacking gym is for anyone looking to leverage cutting-edge technology to get their brain and body to perform at optimal capacity. Leslie visits to see what it’s all about. Upon arrival, Leslie straps into a strength training machine that uses technology instead of weights. Amanda, the regional manager, tells Leslie, “You just got a week’s worth of strength training in about 12 minutes. What if I told you I could give you a 3-hour high-intensity workout in just 21 minutes?”
Leslie tries out all sorts of unique, high-tech equipment. At this gym, they don’t only work the body but also the mind. Leslie gets into a virtual float tank. The tank spins while Leslie is inside and it leverages light and sound so the body can get into a deep meditative state. She later tries the EEG brain trainer where electrodes are attached to her head to read her brain activity.
Leslie reports back to The Doctors that she was in so much pain (the good kind) the next day! She says her favorite part was the result she felt in her arms and chest from the resistance machine. She adds that she could have stayed in that meditation float tank all day.
The founder and CEO of Bulletproof, Dave Asprey, joins over video conference to discuss how he created this body-hack empire. Dave shares that he once weighed 300 pounds and even after working out for over an hour a day for six days a week, didn’t lose any fat. As a computer hacker in Silicon Valley, Dave decided to take that training and apply it to making the body work more efficiently.
The first version of the lab Leslie visited was in Dave’s house and he spent over a million dollars as a “guinea pig” to figure all of this out! At the time, only astronauts and special forces were using this advanced technology but Dave thought if everyone had access to it, we’d all have more energy and an extra hour per day to use for something beneficial.
Dave originally gained attention from his creation of bulletproof coffee. This coffee is made from specially grown coffee beans blended with grass-fed ghee and brain octane oil, and it promises to have a major impact on energy and cognitive function. Dave came up with that discovery while in Tibet on a meditation retreat. There he was served a yak-butter tea and while he thought it tasted gross, he felt really good after. Thus, the seed was planted to create a similar drink.
The Doctors have tried bulletproof coffee and dermatologist Dr. Sonia Batra notes that it is 400 calories! ER physician Dr. Travis Stork says it’s not for him but he thinks the bigger mistake we are all making is having some coffee with our sugary beverages. Bulletproof coffee is an option but since everyone is so different, it is up to the individual if it works in their diet.
Dave discusses the importance of the mind-body connection. He shares that today, CEOs of most companies will say they meditate but sometimes don’t because they lack time. With the bulletproof lifestyle, however, there is that time to work on the mind. “If your mind works, it controls your stress response. You’re going to be a better, happier human being. So you meditate for you… It’s something that’s required for you to show up all the way in your life.”
While not everyone will be able to experience Bulletproof Labs, there are some hacks anyone can do. Dave recommends letting cold water hit you in your face and chest at the end of a cold shower. According to science, studies show that if you do this for three days in a row on the fourth, you won’t be bothered but will feel great. Just that cold exposure will make your cells work better for you and upgrade your energy system!
Secondly, Dave emphasizes how important good, quality sleep is. He says results from the largest study show that people who live the longest sleep six and a half hours a night, not eight. He says getting poor sleep, no matter how many hours, will not leave you full of energy and refreshed. Dave shares that 15% of people are night owls and it’s okay for them to go to bed late. Another 15% wake up early and that’s okay too. However, the majority of people, 60%, should go to bed at 11 PM for optimal rest.
Dave also recommends swapping out the lights in your bedroom with amber or red lights to sleep better. He explains this is because our eyes have melanopsin centers that read the light temperature and tell our brains what time of day it is. If the brain sees bright lights (put those cell phones away!) it interprets them as the middle of the day.
Dave’s entire family is on board with the bulletproof lifestyle (and his wife’s a doctor!) and he jokes that he couldn’t get his kids to eat McDonald’s even if he tried! They'll say to him, “We know how we feel when we eat food that’s not good for us. You can’t make us eat that!” Success as a father… and a health revolutionary! Plastic surgeon Dr. Andrew Ordon comments on Dave, “He took this to the nth degree. He took all of his skills from Silicon Valley… he obviously did his homework and the research!”