Ethics in Medicine

Women Biohackers

Kristen Sparrow • August 15, 2016

Things are getting interesting.

“Amid the #timeisprecious crucible of start-up-landia, wellness culture has created a movement pitched to knowledge workers, applying their love of disrupting traditional systems to the human body — as one start-up puts it, “the next big innovation platform.” While the most fervent among them wait for Elon Musk’s neural lace to compete with artificial intelligence or implant LED lights in their hands, everyday biohackers are subverting the body’s tendency to get tired, foggy, or flabby with chemicals and tech and diet. The goal is to become self-realized, productive, and profitable human — an Alpha class. But Klimen, a biologist and start-up founder, has found that not all biohacking intentions are considered equal: “I think there’s totally a different hue, being a woman,” she says. “There’s an understanding men are doing it for health optimization, and women are doing it for aesthetics and dieting. I just think there’s a lot more stigma, and it’s dismissed a lot more.” ”