How far would you go to hack yourself? Would you spend thousands of dollars across decades to maximise your health and performance? That’s what Dave Asprey did. He’s the Bulletproof Exec, and you might know him as the guy who suggests you put butter in your coffee. There’s a lot more to it than butter though.
This Week’s Discussion
Before his quest to hack his own biology, Dave Asprey was a successful entrepreneur in Silicon Valley, but felt as though he was floundering when trying to lose weight. Eating a low kilojoule diet and exercising just didn’t work for him.
That set off his exploration of biohacking as detailed in his first book, The Bulletproof Diet. He eventually landed on something that’s similar but different to a paleo diet, with high levels of fat matched with brief, high-intensity workouts. And yes, coffee with organic butter to start the day.
His book Head Strong focuses more on what you can do to improve your brain. There are, of course, no magic tricks to become a genius, but you can control your diet and your surroundings to eke out a little more performance and focus.
For Dave, how you feel and how your body functions is a direct reflection of how your mitochondria work. (Mitochondria, as you might recall from high school biology, are like the power plants of the cell.)
Some theories suggest mitochondria evolved from primitive bacteria, and partially for this reason, Dave believes mitochondria actually behave like networks of bacteria that literally control your cravings and decisions. Keep your mitochondria happy with the right diet and you’ll be able to stay focused, sharp and healthy.
(I personally wouldn’t take the mitochondrial view quite so literally, but you can consider it an illustrative metaphor about how your body works as an aggregation of millions of cells.) For the Bulletproof Exec, though, that’s just the tip of the iceberg on what you can do to hack your body and brain.
Listen to the show to hear about the Tibetan origins of Bulletproof coffee, how you can get better sleep, and what’s next for Dave Asprey.
Our Upgrades of the Week
Every week we like to round out the show with the little upgrades we’ve made in our own life. This week we’re talking hydration, cyberpunks and video games.
- Melissa: Melissa has been drinking room temperature water. Exciting! It actually helps her drink more water and stay hydrated, as cold water makes you take smaller sips. Water, hacked.
- Dave: Dave recently became a cyborg. He has a sensor on his arm that lets him wirelessly check his blood sugar levels. It’s a circle of plastic about the size of a quarter stuck to his bicep that can instantly send his stats to a device with an NFC sensor. Very sci-fi.
- Andy: I managed to get my hands on a Nintendo Switch. Ever the Nintendo loyalist, I think it’s the first console I’ve bought since the GameCube. So yeah, I’m still ignoring reality in my free time and escaping to Hyrule.