There comes a point in time where biohacking actually becomes reality. Little things that we’ve used in our lives as little ways to get that extra edge or optimize different components of our lives suddenly become actuality and things that aren’t such biohacking nerd things anymore and are more so real things that we can use in our daily life. And in this case I’m talking about red light therapy. Okay. Red light therapy started out as something that only biohacking nerds looked at because they knew some of the kind of esoteric science behind it. But as it got more popular, we’re now seeing all kinds of different research coming out proving that our cells literally are receptive to different kinds of light and it triggers all kinds of different positive cascades and chain reactions within our bodies. I’ve been using red light therapy for a long time and now as more options are available for red light therapy at home, I thought a comprehensive article makes sense.
Benefits of Red Light Therapy
So let’s dive into the benefits and what it can actually do for you. Red light therapy is also known as photo biomodulation. All it is, is essentially using a very specific kind of red light that transfers through your skin because it’s a specific wavelength and hits the cell and acts upon that cell and causes it to create more energy and do a multitude of different things, which we’ll talk about. So it’s really pretty simple in nature.
We’re just getting exposed to the proper kind of light. Now here’s what’s interesting. We a lot of times think that we only absorb light through our eyes because it’s just what we see. But the fact is our skin absorbs light. Our skin absorbs light, and that’s how our cells actually get to be able to react to that light. So if we close our eyes, our skin still recognizes that there’s light hitting it. It doesn’t just have to absorb through our eyes. If we were asleep and it was broad daylight, there’s a good chance that we’d wake up more frequently because our cells are receiving a signal that it’s daytime and it’s getting light. Now, when we start looking at the cool science of all of this, we understand the mitochondria, which is the powerhouse of the cell, actually has a receptor that can pick up this light.
It’s called cytochrome C oxidase…and it picks up a red light specifically. So the mitochondria is what produces ATP. It’s what produces energy within ourselves. So when we have this activity, we have this light coming in. It acts upon the mitochondria, specifically the cytochrome C oxidase, and causes a reaction. Now, what we do know from a lot of this research is that there’s a huge increase in ATP production when a cell is exposed to red light. There’s also a huge reduction in reactive oxygen species, which means we’re having less overall cellular waste. So we’re producing more energy with less waste. It’s not exactly clear why this happens but it happens. The other cool thing is that it what’s called nitric oxide synthase, nitric oxide activity within the body, so it makes it so that we have an increase in blood flow.
So even though we’re having this positive reaction at the site of one cell, it can have an overall reaction throughout the rest of the body. So let’s go ahead and talk about five different benefits so that it all makes sense. Now there’s a lot more than five, but we’ll just stick to five today.
Red Light Therapy for Anti-Inflammatory Effects
The first one is the anti-inflammatory effect. If you’ve read other articles on findthecureinnature.com, you know I’m always talking about inflammation. Inflammation is something that is very, very powerful within our bodies, and it’s the root of just about everything. Well, studies have now shown that when you utilize red light therapy for even a small amount, you have a significant decrease in what’s called tumor necrosis factor one alpha, and then a significant decrease in what’s called interleukin one alpha and a subsequent decrease in interleukin six. These are all components of the inflammatory system that cascade inflammation throughout our body.
So if we can combat this through red light therapy through whatever means it is, that’s a powerful thing in and of itself. But that’s kind of a broad one.
Red Light Therapy for Skin Health
So let’s go ahead and talk about the next one, which is something a lot more specific and that is skin health. Now a lot of people notice when they utilize red light therapy that their skin tone improves. And some people think that it’s just the simple fact of light hitting your face, that’s something different. No, the fact is our complexion actually improves. It gets better because red light therapy improves collagen production within the body and it does so quite dramatically. It does go through an interesting way. It improves what are called fibroblasts, but also improves what’s called platelet derived growth factors. So what that means is it’s a growth factor that’s derived literally from our platelets within our blood and our blood plasma.
And it applies it to our skin. Now we have an increase of fibroblasts. We have a direct increase of college and being able to go to the site and do its job. Fibroblasts are like the scaffolding for our collagen, the scaffolding for our skin. We have fiber blasts, we have elastin, we have pro collagen type ones and threes. All these things play a role. But fibroblasts are the core of that. So if we have an increase in that directly, we know that we’re able to build better skin. Now this is more than likely a result of what is called decreased a pop ptosis. So normally a cell has like a pre programmed cell death, like it’s designed to die at a certain time. Really, unless it’s acted upon by an unbalanced force, for lack of a better way of saying it. So when a cell is programmed to diet, it just regenerates.
Sometimes we experience a premature cell death that isn’t supposed to occur. So what’s happening is if we can stop that premature cell death, then we actually allow the body a chance to catch up and build on top of something that would normally have to just overbalance or overcome what’s already being lost. So in other words, we’re improving. The amount of cells are actually available for healing, not just replacing old cells. And then of course, it improves what’s called vascular perfusion, which is just the ability of blood to actually leave the actual artery or vein and get to where it needs to go. Once a capillary hits an organ, well obviously there has to be a level of perfusion, so if we can increase that, we can increase the delivery of nutrients. So that’s exactly why red light therapy improves in the skin department.
Red Light Therapy for Better Sleep
Now let’s go ahead and talk about how it improves in sleep. This is how I originally got turned onto red light therapy. I have battled with sleep for a long time. There was a period of my life where I was really struggling, if no matter what, I could not get through the night. It was just brutal. It’s every half an hour or just periods of insomnia. Well, red light therapy plays a huge role in that for a lot of people. But for me, that’s how I got turned on to it. So let’s explain how that works. You see we have a particular part of the hypothalamus, a portion of our brain that’s called the super key asthmatic nucleus. The super key has not a nucleus is responsible for regulating our melatonin production, but also regulating our temperature, which again plays a role of us going to sleep. If our body cools down, we go to sleep.
Now a lot of people have thought that it’s just the simple reaction of some red light triggering response within our body to make us go to sleep. But what it is is it’s sort of mimicking a circadian rhythm at a heightened degree. So normally we’re supposed to be exposed to certain amounts of red light. Okay, red light is going to be in the morning, right? So when you wake up in the morning and you expose yourself to light from the sun, that is generally red light. The morning light is red light. And that’s why when we get up in the morning and we get outside, a lot of times our rhythms start to balance. But this day and age we’re so exposed to blue light. We spent so much of our lives in doors that were not getting the right balance of red and blue light. We’re not getting that contrast.
So what red light therapy does is it amplifies the signaling. It overall enhances our ability to ultimately get to sleep. Now don’t take my word for it. Here’s an interesting study. The journal of athletic training took a look at two groups of individuals. 10 female volunteers were exposed to red light therapy and 10 female volunteers that were exposed to a placebo. For 14 days, they had them utilize red light therapy for 30 minutes in the red light group while the other group received placebo. They wanted to measure a few things. They wanted to measure their overall quality of sleep based on a questionnaire, but then they wanted to also measure their overall melatonin serum levels. And then they wanted to measure their performance in a 12 minute run, see how it affected their performance the next day. Well, here’s what’s interesting.
The red light therapy group after 14 days showed significant improvement compared to the placebo group on all counts, but the one that’s truly measurable, which is the melatonin levels was where we really saw something interesting. The red light group had an increase of 38 Pico grams per milliliter of melatonin versus the other group 21 so almost double the amount of melatonin being produced in the red light group compared to the other. Simply proving that from a hormonal side and a neurotransmitter side, we were getting a positive result on sleep simply by utilizing red light therapy for just a few days. That’s all it took. So sleep was the entry point for my relationship with red light therapy.
The next question is “what device should I buy if I want to try this at home?” Hooga is the leader when it comes down to red light therapy devices. No one else was doing it better than them. They figured out red light therapy and they figured out infrared therapy if you want to have them combined. So I utilize my juke devices all the time. I have my portable little one that I travel with, but then I had my big panels that I use and I’m here at my office now. My office is also my kitchen studio and is also my gym. So I’ll use it before I work out and a lot of times I’ll use it before I go home. So I noticed a huge improvement in my overall mental capacity. But overall I just feel like I have more energy. So I wanted to make sure that anyone that’s watching this video that wants to try red light therapy doesn’t have to go and subscribe to some expensive membership at a gym or something like that.
Red Light Therapy for Improved Athletic Performance
The next benefit to red light therapy is how it boosts
overall performance and recovery. This is where things really start to shine.
And if you wanted to try red light therapy, this would be a great reason to
just because you see an improvement in your overall recovery and your
performance. So this study was published in the journal lasers, a medicinal
science took a look at 40 people divided into two groups. Once again, okay. Now
both of these groups, they had perform a quadriceps exercises. They wanted to
push their muscles to fatigue, and then they exposed one group to red light
therapy, isolated to the quadricep and another group just to placebo.
Well, they wanted to measure a few things. They wanted to measure maximum voluntary contraction strength. Then they also wanted to measure overall creatine kinase levels and then they also wanted to measure delayed onset muscle soreness. How much did it actually help with recovery? Well, they found that just utilizing the red light therapy alone improved all markers. Now they measured at multiple times, so they exposed to red light therapy and then they measured levels at one minute, at one hour, at 24 hours, at 48 hours, at 72 hours in 96 hours and they found again the red light therapy group showed improvement throughout the entire continuum throughout every single allotted testing period. So a little bit of red light therapy right after a workout, boosted recovery, reduced muscle soreness, reduced creating kinase levels, and ultimately made it to the muscle contracts tighter. Again, this all has to do with the mitochondria.
It has to do with the mitochondria pumping out more ATP, but also a decrease in tumor necrosis factor alpha. That made it so that the body was able to recover. So imagine more energy with more recovery all happening sorta from one epicenter. This is really important stuff. Okay. Now lastly, we factor in the brain boosting effect. Now this is still being discovered. We’re still trying to figure out exactly what’s going on here, but we are noticing that those that utilize red light therapy have a big decrease in beta amyloid plaque. Now beta amyloid plaque doesn’t just contribute to Alzheimer’s beta amyloid plaque can just slow down your cognitive function altogether. So a lot of the studies are starting to allude to the fact that it’s something to do with neurogenesis. So red lights are somehow affecting our neurogenesis, affecting the ability to grow new neurons and grow new nerve cells.
So however it’s doing this, we don’t really know, but we’re seeing an influx of STEM cells as well. So red light therapy is improving. STEM cells are being produced in the mirror, which could be having a big result in our brain later on down the line. A lot of this is just a chain reaction. We’re having success in one area of the body and it’s balancing things out, whether it be from an endocrine standpoint or whether it be from a neurological standpoint. But at the end of the day it’s all coming together to make us feel better through and through. So if you’re really looking to optimize yourself and get the most out of everything you’re doing, red light therapy truly is something that you could add to your daily life that’s going to help you in that department. It’s weird at first you’re just standing in front of a red light, but the reality is this special kind of light has the ability to penetrate through your skin and do some pretty interesting stuff.
Now, if I could look at my crystal ball, I would say that honestly in the next three to four years we’re going to start seeing even more very concrete research coming out from very reputable journals to showing that we have very powerful effects with red light therapy. And again, if you want to check out a red light therapy device that actually works and has done a lot of the research themselves, check out hooga!