I was directly confronted with mortality in a unique and profound way, when my wife was diagnosed with a rare cancer of the appendix during the birth of our son. Since my wife’s diagnosis with cancer in 2013, I’ve been at her side through two multi-week hospital stays, followed by months of recovery from major surgery. As if that wasn’t harrowing enough, two of my closest friends received advanced stage cancer diagnoses in the same year. All three of these people were in their late 20s.
Thankfully, due to the capabilities of modern medicine, my wife and friends are alive and well today, but those outcomes were far from certain. These experiences imprinted upon me an acute awareness of the relative fragility and uncertainty of life. Nothing has been more powerful in motivating me to do everything I can to preserve my health. Once you’ve lost your health, nothing else matters, and there is no guarantee you’ll fight your way back. For me, these experiences were a call to stay as strong, robust and healthy as I could, and make the most of the time I have.
The Human Longevity attracted my attention through a co-founder of Human Longevity Inc, Peter Diamandis. As a member of his A360 program, I was offered partial sponsorship to experience 100+ care. As a technology enthusiast with a newfound zest for staying alive, the value of a service which can fully analyze your health trajectory excited me. I immediately signed on and had my first visit in May 2018.
Before I came to 100+ at the age of 32, I’d only experienced traditional ‘reactive’ health care. I would have a specific complaint or illness, visit a doctor for 10 minutes, and go home with a treatment to implement over the next few days. My experience with 100+ could not have been more different. I came with no specific complaints, spent more than 2 hours with a diverse team of medical professionals and came away with a reinvigorated lifestyle to implement—not over a few days, but for the rest of my life!
When I arrived, the warm welcome from the highly professional staff and the escort to my private suite for the day gave the excellent feeling of being the ‘center of attention’. And of course, to the team of medical professionals reviewing my body in detail, I was! In my complimentary grippy ‘Human Longevity’ socks, and a made-to-order coffee in my hand, I felt relaxed and safe, despite feeling some nervousness about what might be discovered.
I interacted with several types of healthcare technology throughout the day, but the 70 minutes in the MRI machine was what left the most lasting impression. As the radiation-free electro-magnetic machine scanned my body from head to toe, I felt elated. What an amazing feat of technology surrounded me, mapping the entirety of organs, tissues, bones and more in great detail. It was perhaps the most ‘futuristic’ thing I have ever experienced.
I learned a wealth of information about myself at many different levels, from the genome, to the detailed look inside my body, and the comprehensive blood panel. From this emerged a clear need for me to be more active. While I was at a healthy weight, eating a whole foods-based diet and relatively ‘fit’ in my own mind, that’s not what the data showed. There was a clear lifestyle change required of me by 100+- namely at least 30 minutes of vigorous physical activity a few times a week, in order to improve my blood pressure, blood lipids and overall health outlook.
On the day of my visit, my doctor had encouraged me to exercise more vigorously and more often, to improve several of my risk factors. It was something I’d heard before, but despite hearing the ‘you should exercise more’ line yet again, this time it stuck. I had not come all the way to San Diego (from Australia) to partake in the world’s most advanced proactive healthcare to not listen to the doctor’s instructions. In the weeks following my visit, I took it upon myself to make a lifestyle change, sweating out a newfound aerobic fitness habit 4-5 days a week, just as she had instructed. One of my favorite moments in my follow-up care experience was during the long form call with the doctor to review all of my results. The smile on her face and happy laugh when I shared this change during that call is a moment I won’t soon forget – imagine having your doctors cheer for you and your longevity. It’s a great feeling! Today, at 35 years old, I’m in the best shape of my life, having gone well beyond 30 minutes a few times a week, to winning 5K races, lifting weights, and training for my first Olympic triathlon later this year. I could not be more grateful for the impetus given me to ‘upgrade’ my longevity strategy and stay fit for life!
As part of that lifelong strategy, I will be returning every 12-18 months for a repeat trip to Human Longevity. Full-body disease screening, particularly cancer, is now a pillar of my longevity strategy. I’m no longer contented to leave my health ‘up to chance’, for as the experiences of my wife and friends demonstrated, even young people are not immune. As a part of that longevity strategy, I aim to minimize my mortality risk with long-term thinking and risk management. Early detection of disease, particularly cancer, leads to great improvement in prognosis. Human Longevity now makes that possible.
Also, as a newly minted fitness enthusiast, I am fascinated by the level of detail the full body MRI offers in terms of body metrics. 100+ data has helped me to see the difference my new lifestyle has made, from the inside out. Not only have my blood pressure, lipid profile and metabolic health all improved, but my muscle mass (particularly in the legs) has increased along with my fitness. Using the 100+ MRI data to track my performance intrigues me, and I am trying to improve my body composition with each visit, and I’ve made it a personal goal to keep growing the muscle mass in my legs over subsequent visits. In my next 100+ check-up, I will also be old enough to take advantage of the cardiac CT scan to take an early look at any signs of cardiovascular disease. Keeping my body strong and my heart healthy are now a top priority!
I am so enthusiastic about my longevity strategy that I’ve made it part of my life’s mission to spread the word about technologies that can help us live healthier longer. I can think of no better partner in that journey than Human Longevity. The staff, physicians, managers, investors – the whole team at Human Longevity Inc, share that mission – it’s what gets me up in the morning and working late into the night.
But at the end of the day, the choice on whether or not to be a part of this effort to bring proactive healthcare to the world, lies with you, the reader, personally. Where will you choose to invest your time, energy and resources? If not in ensuring the quality and duration of your life left on this planet, what else? Don’t be another ‘they found it too late’, ‘he keeled over dead, heart attack’ story – take ownership of your health, manage your risk, look early and look often! Never before have we had a resource like 100+ at our disposal for optimizing our health and preventing late-stage disease diagnoses! Take advantage of it, so you can continue to be here for your loved ones and live a long, healthy life.