Are you worn out? Feeling down? Having trouble sleeping? Frustrated by your inability to lose weight? Tim Ferriss, author of the 4-Hour Body and self-proclaimed human guinea pig, has spent years researching and testing unusual health and fitness theories on his own body. Those he’s found safe and effective have made him.
Here he tackles some of your biggest complaints – from fighting a slow metabolism to experiencing the blues to difficulty sleeping. His solutions will show you how to supercharge and reshape your body with very little extra effort.
1. Supercharge Your Metabolism: 5-Minute Deep Freeze
By taking a cold shower anywhere from 5 minutes to 30 minutes, you can jumpstart your metabolism. That’s because cold temperature activates brown fat, the fat-burning fat tissue in your body that burns energy to keep you warm. When taking a cold shower, you may experience some shivering, which indicates that you’re using energy to keep your body temperature up.
Try taking a quick shower in the morning or night. Start with 2 minutes of warm water to get your body temperature up, then switch to cold and work toward keeping the water temperature under 60 degrees. Over time, your body will become less sensitive to this drop in temperature.
2. Supercharge Your Mood: Kimchi Kick-start
Millions of people take prescription SSRI antidepressants to keep levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin high so they can maintain a good mood. However, most people don’t realize that more than 90% of the body’s serotonin is produced in the gut, which is why scientists often refer to it as the “second brain.”
Science has suggested that if you eat fermented food regularly, such as kimchi (Korean pickled cabbage), its healthy, probiotic bacteria will help the serotonin in your gut move to your brain. Eat 4-5 tablespoons of kimchi or any lacto-fermented food such as sauerkraut or plain yogurt daily to chase the blues away.
3. Supercharge Your Sleep: Butter Before Bedtime
Do you turn in early yet still toss and turn all night – and then wake up tired? Tim Ferriss believes that one of the biggest culprits for walking up during the night is low blood sugar. To prevent this, eat 2 tablespoons of raw almond butter before bed. This low-glycemic index food can prevent blood sugar spikes so you can sleep better. In fact, according to Ferriss, correcting your blood sugar level can actually make you feel as if you’re doubling up on the sleep you’re actually getting – 4 hours can feel like 8, 6 like 12, etc. Remember that the recommended amount of sleep for adults is 7-8 hours.
Sleep Power Position
The position you sleep in can greatly improve the quality of your rest. Tim Ferriss recommends lying on your chest with your head on a pillow, turned to the right. Place both arms straight by your sides, palms up. Then bring your right arm up until the top of your right elbow is bent 90 degrees and your hand is close to your head. Then bring your right knee out to the side until it is bent at approximately 90 degrees.
By keeping both your arm and leg at 90 degrees you’ll distribute your weight more evenly so that you’re not putting any pressure on your shoulder or on your hip. This position mimics a swaddled baby, which means you’ll move and fidget less and enjoy a deeper, uninterrupted sleep.
Reshape Your Body: 3 Things You Must Do Within 30 Minutes of Waking Up
Tim Ferriss’ 30/30 rule – consuming 30 grams of protein within the first 30 minutes of waking up in the morning – has already helped transform women’s bodies across the country. Now, he has 3 new rules to help you reshape your body by barely doing anything at all. However, you must also do these within 30 minutes of waking up.
1. Use an All-Fat Creamer in Your Coffee
Millions of women think they’re doing the right thing by using skim milk or fat-free creamer in their coffee, but these dairy products can actually cause weight gain by spiking insulin. Go for full-fat cream instead since dairy fat contains CLA-conjugated linoleic acid, which has been linked to a decrease in stored body fat.
Tim Ferriss has seen women lose 2-4 pounds a week by making this small change, which also helps prevent afternoon energy dips. Put 2 tablespoons of all-fat cream in your coffee and you’ll actually lower your chance of gaining weight over the course of the year.
2. Drink a Fat-flushing Tea: Yerba Mate
Popular in South America, yerba mate tea is chockfull of antioxidants and vitamins, and acts through 2 mechanisms to help you lose fat. The first speeds your digestion for the entire day – drink Yerba mate in the morning instead of coffee. Second, it actually reduces fat absorption by decreasing the pancreatic lipase enzyme. Additionally, yerba mate does not produce the caffeine-related crashes that some people experience with coffee and can give you 3-4 hours of very stable, clean energy.
3. Cassia Cinnamon Cheat
Cinnamon helps keep blood sugars in check, which helps control weight gain. Both Cassia and Ceylon cinnamon help regulate glucose levels, but some studies show that Cassia does it better.
To determine the difference between these types of cinnamon, Ceylon sticks roll up from both sides like a scroll. Cassia looks more like bark and will often roll up from one side like a cigar. Use Cassia cinnamon in your coffee or even sprinkle it on a bowl of oatmeal or cottage cheese. Cassia cinnamon, it turns out, is the type you find in most coffee shops. Look for it at grocery stores for about $5. If unavailable, look for it at specialty food stores.