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Body hacking is the process of making adjustments to the way we live, work, sleep or generally function in an attempt to improve our overall level of well-being.

These adjustments are either based on information obtained through self-tracking or through general real world experiences; they’re not necessarily recognized by science or medicine.

However, there are hacks that do have a basis in research and confirmation. Here are ten of them:

1. If you’ve got an itch in your throat, scratch your ear.

When the nerves in the ear get stimulated, they create a reflex in the throat that causes a muscle spasm, which cures the itch.

So says says Dr Scott Schaffer of Advocare, an ear, nose, and throat specialty center in Gibbsboro, New Jersey

2. If you have trouble hearing, use your right ear.

right ear

It’s better at picking up rapid speech. But, the left is better at picking up music tones.

3. Or, push back the tragus and lean in.

ear tragus

4. During an injection, cough as the needle is going in.

Next time the doctor’s going to give you an injection, cough as the needle is going in.

cough

Coughing causes a sudden, temporary rise in pressure in the chest, inhibiting the pain-conducting work of the spinal cord, leading to pain-free injections.

5. Use your tongue and a finger to relieve sinus issues.

tongue and forefinger

This works for stuffed noses and sinus pressure. Push your tongue against the roof of your mouth, and then press a finger between your eyebrows.

This causes the vomer bone to rock, according to Dr Lisa DeStefano, an assistant professor at the Michigan State University college of osteopathic medicine. It loosens your congestion and clears you up. After 20 seconds, you’ll feel your sinuses start to drain.

6. If you nap after a big meal, lay on your left side.

That’ll keep you from suffering from acid reflux.

It keeps your stomach lower than your esophagus, which helps keep stomach acid from sliding up your throat.

dog napping

The esophagus and stomach connect at an angle. When you sleep on your right, the stomach is higher than the esophagus, allowing food and stomach acid to slide up your throat.

Remember, it’s not advisable for you to go to bed immediately after eating. Wait for 2-3 hours. It’s part of a complete strategy to avoid heartburn.

7. Slow your heart rate by blowing on your thumb.

blowing on thumb

Since the thumb has a pulse of its own, if you can calm it down, you’re effectively calming the heart down, too.

8. Prevent brain freeze with your tongue.

Press your tongue flat against the roof of your mouth, covering as much surface area as possible.

Brain freeze happens because the nerves in the roof of your mouth get extremely cold, so your brain thinks your whole body is cold. It compensates by overheating, which causes your head to hurt. By warming up the roof of your mouth, you’ll chill your brain and feel better.

9. Tell yourself to work out for just five minutes daily.

No matter how bad you feel, promise yourself to go to the gym. You only have to work out for five minutes. If you’re really miserable after those five minutes, let yourself leave. Usually, once you start moving, you’ll want to keep moving.

10. Drink a glass of water before eating.

It’s easy to confuse hunger with thirst. Staying hydrated before a meal can prevent you from overeating.

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