5 Scientific Ways to Live a Happier and Healthier Life
Published on The Good Men Project 10/10/15
It was late 1996 and my marriage and family life I dreamt of was ending. My wife of 8 years and mother of our 5 small children was gone. The emotional strain of it all caused me to let myself go and at 33 years old, and 5’10” tall, I weighed on the wrong side of 300lbs. I felt undesirable, and like many divorcees, I feared I may be alone forever.
In addition to my own self esteem issues, I was now solely responsible for 5 little children, ages 18 months through 8 years old. I can recall, after a typical 16 hour day of running my business and taking care of my kids, I had an “incident.” My heart was racing and paining and I couldn’t breathe. I was terrified that if something happened to me, who would take care of my children? It was at that moment, that I desperately knew I better get myself in shape to live a happy, healthy and long life – for both my children and for me!
Today, my kids are in all their 20’s and are all successful in their careers and lives. I am in my early 50’s and a healthy 200 lbs. I run and lift weights 3-4 times per week, can do 100 push-ups and 100 sit ups. I am in the best shape of my life and I feel younger than I did when I was in my 30’s. So it was no surprise when I started speaking with my good friend, Dr. Geo Espinosa, who is the director of Integrative and Functional Urology Center at NYU Langone Medical Center, I discovered that many of the things I did to get myself healthy, were things that he tells his male patients to do – to live a longer and healthier life.
“Aging is the progressive and irreversible ability for damaged cells to heal themselves. When cells in the young malfunction, other cells send signals to the problem cell to heal or die. When bad cells don’t die, cancer is the result, for example.” –Dr. Geo
Here are Dr. Geo’s 5 Scientifically Proven Ways for Men to Slow Down the Aging Process and Live a Happier and Healthier Life:
- Gratitude – The simple act of being grateful for the things you have (i.e. health, family, friends, Sunday Night Football or whatever) has shown to produce less cortisol, a stress hormone, that damages cells when overproduced and improves the production of an anti-aging compound Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA).
- List your “why’s” – Your reasons “why” you want to live long and well keeps you focused on the things you value. That leads to staying consistent with behavior that promotes health and wellness as the calendar years increment.
- Movement – Moving around a lot during the day has been recently researched to promote longevity and wellness to the extent where now experts consider sitting a risk factor similar to cigarette smoking. Sitting for more than 6 to 8 hours a day promotes early death from heart disease and cancer.
- Eating well and not too much – Eating plant foods and small amounts of food at one sitting, combined with intermittent fasting, can promote longer telomeres – the end part of your DNA associated with slower aging. Telemores are analogous to the ends of the plastic part at the end of your shoelace. The longer your telomeres the less you age.
- Breathing – Deep diaphragmatic breathing calms down the sympathetic nervous system, which would lead to less aging promoting cortisol.
Here are Dr. Geo’s 5 Simple Daily Tips:
Start your morning on the right foot. Upon waking:
- Drink an 8 ounce glass of water.
- Think deeply for all the things you are grateful for.
- Get 15 to 30 minutes of movement. Moderate to high intensity exercise would be great here.
- Take a cold shower to improve production of good, brown fat and increase powerful glutathione product.
- Have a breakfast containing healthy fats and protein. No carbs.
We created a video where we discuss in more detail how men can live a longer and happier life.
Live long and prosper.
Categories: Big Life, Dating & Relationships, Parenting & Fatherhood
How do I tell “good brown fat” from the “not so good non brown” fat?