‘My life in a day’
Lorena Puica, tech entrepreneur The founder and CEO of digital preventative health doctor, iamYiam, on finding wellness
Founder of IamYIam digital health doctor, Lorena Puica.
‘Iwake up at 5.30am, meditate in bed for 30 minutes to set my focus for the day, then do stretches and handstands to get my blood flowing. After a swim and sauna in the gym of my building, I head home to get ready for work, and eat porridge and seeds to balance my nervous system. I then focus on things that need a lot of thought, such as writing an important email to an investor, before going to my office for 9am. I fit lots of calming activities into my morning routine because once I start work – a typical day includes five to seven meetings with corporate partners, investors and journalists – there’s little time for me. The goal of iamYiam (iamYiam.com) – pronounced ‘I am why I am’ – is to enhance the health and wellbeing of one billion people by 2025, and when I get there, I’ll be so thrilled.’
FINDING A CURE
‘I left home in Romania for university when I was 17, gaining five degrees in subjects including economics and finance. After five years working in strategic consulting in Germany, I worked another five in investment management in London, getting fast tracked in every role I had. But in rushing to get to the top, I messed up my health along the way. At 24, I was diagnosed with an underactive thyroid and spent the next five years on hormone therapy. After years of feeling so poorly – and insisting on more in-depth analysis on my condition – doctors recommended I had my thyroid removed at 28. I refused, and threw myself at every kind of alternative therapy from acupuncture and osteopathy to yoga and meditation. After two years of research and practice, and getting tested along the way to see if genetics played a part in my condition (it didn’t), I had completely healed myself simply by changing my lifestyle, and was given a clean bill of health.
‘Shortly afterwards, in February 2015, I took part in a charity challenge, to run seven marathons on seven continents in seven consecutive days, which we finished in 10 days due to weather conditions. This gave me the frame of mind to think about how I could use my journey to health to help others who are keen to engage in therapies to improve their wellness, but feel confused by the lack of substantiated academic
and scientific research out there to support the practice of alternative therapies.’
A NEW FUTURE
‘Four months later, I resigned from my job. Starting with a team of three that’s now grown to 21, I set out to create a digital platform that would ease people’s journeys to wellness, with a focus on prevention rather than cure. The first step for iamYiam is to find out how an individual is designed physically, by collecting their genetic data through a saliva test. The person then completes a lifestyle questionnaire that helps us map the eight dimensions of wellbeing – including sleep, stress, anxiety and weight – then we combine this data using scientific research to translate it into
‘My goal is to enhance the health of 1 billion people’
simplified, digestible information that people can take action on and set appropriate health goals with personalised activity and nutrition plans. We also provide a platform of handpicked practitioners to take the guesswork out of finding a therapist.
Since launching in the UK in February 2016, we’re now launching in Dubai, and New York is next on the list.
‘After a busy day where I often only get time to grab lunch from Pret, Itsu or Wholefoods, I love to unwind by going out for dinner around three nights a week, but I’ll be home by 10pm to decompress in a bath filled with Dead Sea salts, then meditate to let go of everything that’s happened in the day and fall asleep by 11.30pm.’
‘I healed myself from an underactive thyroid’
Lorena has a healthy work-life balance
She swims before breakfast
Lorena meditates daily