Ari Meisel on Curing the Incurable Through Self-Experimentation

October 10, 2011

Ari cured himself of Crohn’s disease by experimenting with some unusual supplements, nutrition and fitness regimens, and tracking every bit of it.

Four years ago, Ari was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. After a couple of years of intense pain, sixteen pills a day, and yet another visit to the hospital, he decided to take control of his pain. So he started to track everything. His tracking regimen included exercise, supplements, sleep, food, etc. He used some popular tracking tools such as the FitBit, Zeo, and 23andMe. He correlated these metrics with how much pain he was in and his mood. The difficult part was trying to quantify the psychological component.

Ari learned to control the pain from Crohn’s. It took a certain combination of food, supplements, exercise and sleep, but the key was collecting enough data through experimentation. The other key learning from Ari’s work was that sharing the data is very important. Sharing included his friends, family, doctor, and others with Crohn’s. This sharing of data helped him analyze the data better and made him feel better about the task. (Filmed at the NY Quantified Self Show&Tell #13 at NYU ITP.)

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