‘My life in a day’

Lorena Puica, tech en­tre­pre­neur The founder and CEO of dig­i­tal pre­ven­ta­tive health doc­tor, iamYiam, on find­ing well­ness

Health & Fitness - - Welcome -

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

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