The awareness that I gained when I started learning about the fact that my body naturally does different things best at different times of day was sort of very freeing in a sense that it let me become a little bit more self aware about when I felt best working and when I felt best resting
Azure Grant is an editor at Quantified Self and a researcher in the field of biological rhythms. Her goal is to combine Chronobiology with Participant-Led Research using wearable sensors and signal processing to map individuals’ biological rhythms in the real world.
Azure currently leads “Blood Testers,” a participatory Quantified Self project. The project created the highest temporal resolution lipid data set ever recorded in free-living humans. In addition, Azure researches the use of continuous body temperature data to investigate sleep, jet lag, and female cycling.
An Introduction to Biological Rhythms and Temporal Structures Over the course of time, our cells organized to run more efficiently. There are time periods of activity. There are time periods of rest. Each of our cells has these instructions. When these cells organize in a fashion to perform a certain function (like keeping you awake), it becomes biological rhythms.
As Azure mentions, "these rhythms occur without us doing anything. If you put a human or anyone in a box, they would sort of keep going. The rhythms allow our bodies to predict when something about the environment is likely to change."
2018 is my year of rhythms. In this episode, Azure and I dig deep into biological rhythms. Biological rhythms are an obsession of mine after constant travel and stress lead to health issues in my own life over two years ago.
Key Highlights of Biological Rhythms: What are biological rhythms? How do biological rhythms differ from temporal structures Why cortisol and the HPA axis may not be your enemy How can you use biological rhythms to optimize your health What is known and not known in about biological rhythms Some stories I share about how altering towards my day changed my health Azure's research and how she became involved with Quantified Self How Azure has used continuous temperature monitoring in her own life to observe these rhythms Key Resources Mentioned in the Podcast: When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing The Power of When: Discover Your Chronotype--and the Best Time to Eat Lunch, Ask for a Raise, Have Sex, Write a Novel, Take Your Meds, and More PubMed Biological Rhythms Harvard Sleep Group Northwestern University Center for Circadian and Sleep Medicine University of Chicago Sleep Research Center Sleep Center at the University of California San Diego Products Mentioned in the Podcast: Thermochron iButton Starter Kit The Final Three: Azure Grant What is your top tool or technology for peak performance? Headspace Number one tip for enhancing cognition? Daily social interaction with someone with which you enjoy speaking Top book on Peak Performance? In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto Where Can You Find More on Azure Grant? Quantified Self-website Quantified Self Cardiovascular Disease Symposium Azure's research on PubMed
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