Inside the Regimen of Biohacking Brittany- Holistic Nutritionist
" Through healing my gut and body, I fell in love with natural health and never looked back. "
We were excited to invite Biohacking enthusiast Brittany Ford for an interview to learn more about her unique journey, and have a little peek into what her daily life is like! Keep reading below to learn more: Edit: Since publishing this article, Brittany has since completed her program in Holistic Nutrition, and we could not be more proud of her!
" I felt a lot older than I should be at 16."
At only 16, Brittany was not sleeping well, had bad digestion, and her hair was falling out. For a young woman, this was detrimental to her self-confidence as well as her overall health. When she consulted a doctor, he simply said that there was nothing wrong! She then decided to see a Naturopath doctor, and that's when the report showed that she had Leaky Gut Syndrome.
And that's where the healing started. Brittany realized that her health was in her own hands, so she continued to heal herself through pursuing natural health and biohacking. After a long journey, she is currently doing much better, with minimal food sensitivity. Brittany is continuing to advocate natural health as she returns to school to become a holistic nutritionist!
How does your day get started? I start my day by drinking a litre of water with 1000mg of Vitamin C to help flush out toxins and rehydrate the body after sleep. I like drinking my water while outside - it helps start my day in a positive and calm manner. After that, I usually have a cup of black coffee or Bulletproof coffee in order to add some exogenous ketones to my system so that my brain and body are efficiently fuelled for the day.
What does wellness mean to you?
I actually prefer "biohacking" which specifically outlines choices that hack your biology to allow you to reach optimal health.
How do you incorporate wellness throughout the rest of your day? Biohacking for me is more than just what you do or don't eat. It includes how to manage stress, hormones, toxins, artificial light, sleep, relationships, exercise and more. It's a lifestyle. Some key things I do to promote optimal health everyday are reducing blue light from technology, deep breathing, practicing gratitude, moving my body daily, going to sleep at the same time every night and taking appropriate supplements to avoid deficiencies and help detox my body.
How do you think biohacking needs to consider female endocrinology? What is your perspective on female health, and what are a few things woman new to it should consider?
I think biohacking, like any other therapy or philosophy, needs to take into account how amazingly different women's bodies are from men's. Something may work wonders for men, but it may wreck havoc on women's hormones, and therefore needs to be adjusted to be more suitable. For example, some females really struggle with intermittent fasting since the absence of food can change their hormones to a point where their menstrual cycle, mood, weight and sleep are altered in a negative way. This is far less common in men. This shows that "one size fits all" does not work with both sexes, and thus the protocol must be altered accordingly for each individual for the best results.
It's important to remember that biohacking your life to be in a state of optimal health takes a ton of time, energy and self love. It doesn't happen overnight and it doesn't happen after reading one article on how to sleep better. Be patient and open to learning new ways to hack your body. Most importantly, constantly express gratitude and grace towards yourself for being willing to change, grow as a person and give your body the opportunity it needs to function at it's best.
Share with us a bit about how your wellness journey started? I had health problems in high school and couldn't find an effective solution through my family doctor. I went on a journey through different practitioners and therapies, and finally found I had Leaky Gut. This, and a couple other smaller problems, was the main cause for my symptoms and health issues. Through healing my gut and body, I fell in love with natural health and never looked back.
When did you know you had a message you wanted to share? I knew I wanted to work in the natural health field when I started telling friends and family about what I was learning, and how much of a difference it made in my life and health. I also wrote an article that got published online about my experience with Leaky Gut and got a ton of positive feedback and further questions. This further proved to me that not only did I have a lot to share, but I had a voice that could help others.
How do you make time for balance and self care? It takes dedication and understanding that self care is just as important as other tasks, in order to successfully incorporate it into your routine. Balance and self care can include little things that make a big difference such as reading, taking a hot bath, using essential oils or painting your nails. it can also include things that take more time and have a stronger effect like going for a hike, visiting a spa, meal prepping or going to the gym. It doesn't matter what the self care act is, as long as it is repeatedly done throughout the week. This is the ultimate solution to bring balance to life.
How does your regimen change when you travel? Since I intermittent fast most days, it can be difficult to maintain this while travelling, especially when flying or exposed to so much new food. It requires dedication to stick to my routine, but it allows me to have a far better trip than if I throw all my healthy habits out the window. However, if traveling for a vacation, it's also important to relax and let go - this is time away from the real world, a couple glasses of wine aren't going to set back your health significantly if it means you're enjoying yourself.
We all have stress, we're curious- what do you do to manage it, and how has your outlook on stress changed? Stress is a major issue for many people, including myself. My current biohacks for stress include reducing caffeine, increasing magnesium and practicing calming, slower habits such as deep breathing, listening to relaxing music and going for walks. The last thing you want when stressed is to be dehydrated, have a racing heart rate and feel overwhelmed - this only leads to negative thoughts, irritability and aggression. I'm also a nature lover, so anything outdoors relaxes me and reduces my stress significantly.
What is your go-to snack for a pick me up in the daytime? If I can, avocado sprinkled with olive oil and sea salt. Raw veggies and guacamole are an awesome option as well. Basically, anything that doesn't spike insulin and is high in fat is a great option to create energy and sustain appetite.
Of the following 7 pillars- (nutrition, sleep, cognition, mood, cycle, fitness, and beauty) - which are the highest priority for you, and why? Biohacking incorporates all of these pillars - you can't focus on one, neglect the others and expect to reach optimal health. I am very passionate about all of them and try to alter all!
How do you define innovation? The spark and drive to create something new that benefits someone somewhere.
What are your favourite skincare tricks & products? I am a huge green beauty activate. I love brands like Juice Beauty and 100% Pure, since they derive all their ingredients from actual natural sources. I am currently doing a weekly mask that mixes olive-oil based mayonnaise, wheat germ and bergamot essential oil. It is super moisturizing and really makes your skin glow!
How do you and your inner network support each other in living your best life? The best people in my life encourage me to be my best self, even if that means taking risks. We push each other to be better and we practice gratitude and positivity everyday.
What are your favourite wellness trends? I love that people are becoming more open to intermittent fasting and eating in a ketogenic manner. I love that we are finally debunking the myth that all fat is bad for you.
And, your least-favourite? I still think there is a tendency to want a magic pill - one little thing to take that will keep the weight off, reduce stress, help us be happier and feel younger. It's not a pill, it's not a diet, it's a lifestyle.
Do you have any advice for our audience on how to stay positive, and maintain a good outlook? Negative and self-deprecating thoughts can turn into a vicious spiral where your inner critic is constantly putting you down or only seeing the negative parts in life. You can combat this by catching yourself when the thoughts start and flip it and think about the positive side instead. It takes a ton of practice to always see the good, but it's worth it because not only do you feel better in the moment but you're not causing negative biological effects in the body that can lead to inflammation and further health problems.
What advice do you have for someone who's ready to start sharing their message? Get out there and just do it - someone somewhere is going through what you are! Everyone can have their own audience, there's enough people in the world and enough issues people need help with.
When in the grocery store- what does Brittany pick up? Mostly things on the perimeter - lots of veggies, little fruit, properly raised meat, eggs, etc. I also like snacking on high-fat nuts like pili or macadamia nuts and 100% dark chocolate.
At the end of the day, how do you complete your regimen? I have to wind down if I am going to sleep well. I turn off any blue lights and turn on my red lights in the bedroom and bathroom. I like to read for 30 minutes before sleeping to calm myself down as well. I also like practicing gratitude by saying things I am grateful for that occurred that day.
Thanks again to Brittany for sharing her story with us! You can find her on Instagram: @biohackingbrittany
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Read more from our Inside Her Regimen series and learn about Aussie wellness coach, Jade Champion's, wellness journey . Click here to read her story.