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The Adversity Advantage with Doug Bopst

Nov 30, 2020

What if I told you the way you breathe could potentially be destroying your health?!


I got your attention didn’t I?


Don’t be scared I have just the guest today on the show, that I will introduce in a moment that is going unpack all things on “the breath” and help inspire you to breathe properly so that you can improve your ability to function cognitively, mentally, emotionally and physically. 


Today’s guest is James Nestor, an author and journalist who has written for Scientific American, Outside, The New York Times, and more. His latest book, Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art was released earlier this year and was an instant New York Times and London Sunday Times bestseller. Breath explores how the human species has lost the ability to breathe properly--and how to get it back. This is a book I could not put down once I started and It was absolutely “breath taking” for so many pun intended.


Breath will be translated into more than 30 languages in 2021. Nestor has spoken at Stanford Medical School, the United Nations, Global Classroom, and appeared on more than 60 radio and television shows, including Fresh Air with Terry Gross, the Joe Rogan Show, and more.


Be ready to have your mind blown by the wisdom James shares which is all based on his research and experience.

Show Notes:

Many of us might not know that breathing has a huge impact on our physical, mental and emotional health. But, it’s how we breathe that is the most critical. Having James on this show will absolutely be helpful for us to know the importance of proper breathing in our daily life.


The reason why James decided to study about breathing is because back then, even though he was doing all the right things to become healthy, he still suffered from a lot of respiratory illnesses such as constant bronchitis, mild pneumonia, and wheezing. He thought that getting sick was just normal because he lives in the city, until his doctor suggested for him to take a breathing class. And that’s how it all started.


You will be enlightened by the results of the experiment James and his team conducted. He will be showing us facts as we talk about the following topics:


  • The importance of nostril breathing and why we are breathing wrong


  • The findings in doing the experiment where he plugged his nose for 10 days and how it impacted:


  • Blood pressure
  • Heart rate
  • Sleep 
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Mental capabilities
  • Stress


  • How breathing affects three struggles people are facing during these days:


  • Immunity
  • Stress
  • Sleep


  • The damages mouth breathing can do to our nose muscles


  • The correlation with breath work and helping people heal from trauma and/or grief that are usually the reasons why people get into drug addiction


  • James’ experience with managing his own stress levels


  • The importance of holding our breath and what it does as a whole on our body


  • How to properly breathe to calm your anxiety

The Book “Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art”


Everyone can relate to James’ book because we all breathe. 


Basically, what James is trying to encapsulate in this book is to describe to people that there's this amazing resource right in the front of our faces and that is proper breathing.



Breathing is a pillar of health. It is the thing that ties all of the different systems of the body together.


Our nose is our first line of defense for our health.


We have to understand our physiology, how our body processes air, how gas exchange works, how oxygen feeds our hungry cells. And once we understand that, we can really appreciate why it's so important to breathe correctly.


If we can become aware of our breath, we can then take control of it.


What breath holding allows us to do is become more comfortable with the increase of CO2.


When we take control of our breathing, we can influence all our organs’ functions down to our immune systems.

Connect with James:








Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art


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