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Bryan Johnson Tips: Vagus Nerve Stimulation Device to Increase HRV

Bryan Johnson Tips: Vagus Nerve Stimulation Device to Increase HRV

Key Takeaways

  • Vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) can significantly improve heart rate variability (HRV).
  • Bryan Johnson, a prominent biohacker, has seen remarkable health benefits from using a VNS device.
  • There are many VNS devices like Nurosym and Pulsetto that offer an accessible way to stimulate the vagus nerve for improved HRV.
  • Incorporating VNS into your daily routine can lead to numerous health benefits, including better mood and reduced stress.
  • Monitoring your HRV can help track the effectiveness of VNS and guide you towards a healthier lifestyle.

Bryan Johnson's Biohacking Secret with Vagus Nerve Stimulation

When we talk about hacking our body's potential, few tools are as powerful as vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) to increase heart rate variability (HRV). This technique is not just for the elite biohackers or millionaires like Bryan Johnson; it's accessible to anyone looking to enhance their health and well-being. But why should you care about stimulating your vagus nerve? Let's dive into the science and practical tips to make the most out of this life-changing practice.

What is the Vagus Nerve?

Imagine a vast network that relays messages between your brain and the rest of your body. That's your vagus nerve. It's the longest cranial nerve, and it influences your breathing, digestive function, and even your heart rate. By stimulating this nerve, we can potentially improve a whole host of body functions, which is why VNS is such a powerful tool in the biohacker's toolkit.

Why HRV Matters for Your Well-being

Heart rate variability is the measure of the variation in time between each heartbeat. Contrary to what you might think, a healthy heart doesn't beat like a metronome. It actually changes its rhythm with each beat. This variability is a sign of your body's adaptability and resilience to stress.

  • Higher HRV is associated with a stronger cardiovascular system and a more robust stress response mechanism.
  • Lower HRV can be a sign of stress, fatigue, or even underlying health conditions.

So, boosting your HRV is a bit like giving your body a better shock absorber for the stresses of life.

The Science Behind VNS

Now, how does VNS affect HRV? The vagus nerve has a direct line to your heart's pacemaker cells. By gently stimulating the vagus nerve, VNS devices can help increase parasympathetic tone, which in turn can increase HRV. This has been backed by research and embraced by health enthusiasts like Bryan Johnson, who seek out the latest advancements to enhance their physiological state.

  • Lowered stress levels
  • Improved mood
  • Better digestion
  • Reduced inflammation

These benefits are why individuals like Bryan Johnson, a leading figure in the biohacking community, have turned to VNS as a cornerstone of their health optimization routines.

Tips from Bryan Johnson: Maximizing VNS Effects

Being the “Most Measured Man in Human History,” Bryan spent 2 years and millions to develop Blueprint. It’s a protocol that aims to improve vitality and well-being by providing a structured approach to nutrition, supplementation, and lifestyle choices. 

In his Blueprint, Bryan advocated the use of VNS devices, which brings us to the next section of picking the right VNS device. 

Picking the Right VNS Device

When considering VNS devices, it's important to compare your options. Nurosym, for instance, has gained attention for its role in neuromodulation and HRV enhancement. Bryan Johnson has also spoken about the benefits of using devices like Nurosym to biohack one’s health

Pulsetto, on the other hand, stands out as a portable and user-friendly option that's designed to be integrated into everyday life. Both devices aim to stimulate the vagus nerve, but Pulsetto's ease of use and accessibility make it a go-to choice for many looking to increase their HRV.

Integrating VNS in Your Daily Routine

According to Bryan, he uses a VNS device that goes on his ears for an hour a day every morning. And then he uses the Pulsetto VNS device that goes on his neck one hour before he goes to bed. If he wakes up at night, he’ll use Pulsetto again which usually puts him back to sleep immediately.

So, to make VNS a part of your life, consistency is key. It's like brushing your teeth - do it daily for the best results. Find a time that works for you, maybe in the morning to start your day relaxed or in the evening to wind down. 

It doesn't need to be a long session; even a few minutes can make a difference. Just like any other habit, the more you do it, the easier it becomes to remember and the more natural it feels.

Diet and Exercise: Enhancing the Effects of VNS

What you eat and how you move also play a critical role in the effectiveness of VNS. Bryan leverages a healthy diet to supercharge the health benefits of VNS. 

Here’s a summary of Bryan’s dietary plan:

  • 2,250 calories daily
  • ~10% Caloric Restriction
  • Vegan (preference, not necessity)
  • 70+lbs of veggies monthly
  • 100+ pills daily

But his diet may not always be followed by the average person. So, you can do the following dietary tweaks to improve your HRV reading:

  • Add Magnesium-Rich Foods: Include green leafy vegetables, nuts, and seeds in your diet, or take a suitable magnesium supplement according to the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA).
  • Incorporate Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Add foods rich in omega-3, such as fish, flaxseeds, and walnuts, to enhance your dietary profile.
  • Include Ashwagandha: Consider incorporating this Ayurvedic herb into your diet for its stress-reducing properties.
  • Minimize Alcohol Consumption: Reduce your intake of alcohol to avoid its disruptive effects on sleep and overall health.
  • Cut Caffeine After Lunch: Avoid caffeine in the afternoon and evening to ensure it doesn't interfere with your sleep quality.

Bryan keeps it simple yet nutritious with three meals daily, consisting of: Super Veggie, Nutty Pudding, and a third that varies and consists of vegetables, nuts, seeds, and berries.

Regular exercise, especially aerobic activities, can also boost HRV. Bryan has his own daily workout routine, which is designed to lower his speed of aging.


Surprisingly, he doesn’t exercise more than an hour a day.

Here’s a summary of Bryan’s workout routine: 

  • 1 hr day
  • ~25 exercises
  • 7 hrs wkly 
  • 88-105 bpm ~1 hr
  • 106-159 bpm -4hr 30 min
  • 159+ bpm 90 minutes 

If Bryan’s exercise regime is too intense, that’s alright. Do what’s achievable for you like walking daily and doing high-intensity interval training (HIIT) to boost your cardio health. 

So, think of VNS as one piece of a larger wellness puzzle. By combining it with a healthy diet and regular exercise, you're setting the stage for optimal health and a high-functioning nervous system.

Complementary Practices and Lifestyle Choices

Besides VNS, other practices can enhance your autonomic function. Mindfulness meditation, deep breathing exercises, and yoga are great for stimulating the vagus nerve naturally. These practices can lower your heart rate and blood pressure, further increasing your HRV.

In an interview on Lifespan, Bryan said that “...he tried meditation for some time, but couldn’t measure its effects, so he switched to breathing exercises that increased his heart rate variability (HRV).”

Sleep is also another crucial part of his routine as he’s been working on achieving consistent, high quality sleep for years. Did you know he has his own sleep routine too?

Here’s a summary of Bryan’s sleep protocol:

  • Blacked out room
  • Same bedtime daily
  • Sleep alone
  • Blue light blocking glasses
  • 1 hr downtime before bed
  • Temp controlled mattress


Bryan has his own disciplined sleep routine to help boost his HRV metrics. 

Therefore, combining VNS with these activities can amplify the benefits. For example, try a VNS session after a yoga class or during breathing exercises. You can also wear the VNS device before sleeping so that it calms down your system just in time for a deep and restful slumber. 

The synergy of these practices can lead to even greater improvements in HRV and overall well-being.

Step-by-Step Guide on Using a VNS Device

Using a VNS device like Pulsetto is straightforward. First, charge the device as per the manufacturer's instructions. Once it's ready, find a comfortable and quiet place to sit or lie down. 

Place the device according to the instructions, typically on the neck where the vagus nerve is accessible. Turn on the device, usually by pressing a button, and adjust the settings to your comfort level. Now, relax and let the device work its magic.

Bryan demonstrating how he’s placing the Pulsetto device on his neck. 

Getting Started with Vagus Nerve Stimulation

Begin with shorter sessions to see how your body reacts. A typical starting point might be five minutes per session. As you get more comfortable, you can gradually increase the duration. Pay attention to how you feel during and after the stimulation. You're aiming for a sense of calm and relaxation, not discomfort.

Wind-Down Routine for Maximum VNS Benefit

Wind-down routines are a critical aspect of your daily VNS session. These routines signal your body to transition into a state of relaxation, preparing it for a restful night. To achieve this, consider incorporating the following wind-down practices into your evening:

  • Take a Relaxing Bath: Immerse yourself in warmth and tranquility.
  • Journaling: Declutter your mind by writing down racing thoughts.
  • Try Calming Teas: Experiment with herbal teas for natural relaxation.
  • Aromatherapy: Use essential oils to create a soothing atmosphere.

During your wind-down time, remember to minimize distractions. This includes:

  • Turning off phones and other devices.
  • Closing your eyes and taking deep breaths.
  • Choosing between quiet or the soft tones of calming music, based on personal preference.

These steps can significantly aid in preparing your body and mind for a night of restorative sleep, enhancing your overall well-being.

Monitoring Progress: Tracking Changes in HRV

It's important to track your HRV over time to see the benefits of VNS. Devices like Garmin, Apple Watch, and Oura ring are good for measuring HRV. Record your HRV before starting VNS and periodically afterward to observe changes. Look for trends, such as an increase in your HRV, which indicates improved autonomic nervous system balance and stress resilience.

Key Metrics to Observe

When tracking HRV, focus on these key metrics:

  • Baseline HRV: Your average HRV over a period of time.
  • HRV response to stress: How quickly your HRV recovers after a stressful event.
  • HRV trend: Whether your HRV is generally increasing, decreasing, or staying the same over time.

These metrics will give you insight into how well your body is responding to VNS and other lifestyle changes. In fact, according to Bryan, he “experienced + 12 year age reversal in 500 day average HRV.” 

After 2 years of Blueprint which includes the usage of a VNS device, these are Bryan’s health metrics. 

Interpreting Your Data for Better Health Decisions

Interpreting HRV data can help you make informed decisions about your health. Over time, you should notice a trend towards higher HRV readings, indicating a more resilient stress response and a healthier autonomic nervous system.

If not, you might need to adjust your VNS practice or look at other aspects of your lifestyle that could be impacting your HRV, such as stress, diet, or sleep patterns..

Remember, VNS is just one piece of the puzzle. A holistic approach to health will yield the best results. Most importantly, listen to your body and consult with healthcare professionals when making any significant changes to your health routine.

Try Pulsetto Today

If you're ready to take the next step in your biohacking journey, trying Pulsetto could be a game-changer. It's a simple, non-invasive, and affordable way to engage your vagus nerve and work towards a healthier, more balanced nervous system. 

To get started with Pulsetto, visit their website, where you can learn more about the device and how it can fit into your wellness plan. Support and resources are available to help you make the most of your Pulsetto experience, ensuring that you're well on your way to enhanced well-being.

With consistent use and the right approach, you'll be joining the ranks of biohackers like Bryan Johnson who have discovered the profound benefits of increasing HRV through VNS. Why wait? Explore what Pulsetto can do for you and start feeling the benefits today.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is vagus nerve stimulation safe for everyone?

While VNS is generally safe, it's always best to consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new health regimen, especially if you have pre-existing conditions or concerns.

VNS devices like Pulsetto are designed to be safe for the general population, but individual circumstances can vary.

How does Bryan Johnson's daily diet contribute to improving his HRV metrics?

Bryan Johnson's Nutty Pudding breakfast is rich in essential fatty acids, antioxidants, and dietary fibers from ingredients like almond milk, macadamia nuts, and berries. 

These components can help reduce inflammation, improve blood lipid profiles, and support cardiovascular health, which are critical factors in enhancing HRV metrics by promoting a healthier autonomic nervous system balance.

How does Bryan's routine of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) for 45 minutes weekly influence his HRV metrics positively?

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) involves short bursts of intense exercise followed by rest or low-intensity periods. This form of exercise has been shown to improve cardiovascular fitness, increase metabolic rate, and enhance the efficiency of the heart muscle. 

The improvements in cardiovascular health directly contribute to a more resilient and adaptable autonomic nervous system, thereby positively influencing Bryan's HRV metrics by enhancing the balance between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems.

In what way do Bryan's daily supplements, including spermidine from chlorella powder, collagen peptides, and creatine, contribute to his HRV improvement?

Bryan's supplementation strategy focuses on nutrients that support cellular health, muscle recovery, and energy production. 

For example, spermidine promotes autophagy, a cell renewal process, which can lead to improved cardiovascular health. On the other hand, collagen peptides support joint and skin health, potentially reducing stress on the body, while creatine enhances energy production and muscle function. 

Together, these supplements can help lower systemic inflammation and improve overall body function, which are key to maintaining a healthy HRV by ensuring the autonomic nervous system operates efficiently.

How does Bryan's disciplined sleep regimen, including a blacked-out room and temperature-controlled mattress, play a role in enhancing his HRV metrics?

Bryan's disciplined sleep regimen is designed to optimize sleep quality, which is crucial for the recovery and regulation of the autonomic nervous system. 

A blacked-out room minimizes light pollution, enhancing melatonin production and promoting deeper sleep cycles. Meanwhile, a temperature-controlled mattress helps maintain an optimal sleeping environment, reducing disruptions and ensuring restful sleep. 

These practices support the restorative functions of sleep on the heart and nervous system, leading to improved HRV metrics by enhancing parasympathetic activity during rest.

What makes Pulsetto unique compared to other VNS devices?

Pulsetto stands out for its user-friendly design, affordability, and effectiveness. It's a device that's accessible to anyone looking to improve their HRV and overall well-being.

With features like personalized programs and a supportive mobile app, Pulsetto offers a comprehensive approach to vagus nerve stimulation that's hard to find elsewhere.

Can Pulsetto be used alongside other wellness practices?

Yes, Pulsetto complements a variety of wellness practices. Whether you're into yoga, meditation, or fitness, incorporating Pulsetto can enhance the benefits of these activities. It's all about creating a well-rounded approach to your health. This is exactly suggested in Bryan’s Blueprint Protocol.

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