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Photo courtesy of National Geographic.
By Aron Vaughan

Limitless with Chris Hemsworth: The Path to Longevity

What if you could combat aging and discover the full potential of the human body? 

Actor Chris Hemsworth of Extraction and Thor fame explores this revolutionary idea in the new National Geographic original series Limitless with Chris Hemsworth, created by award-winning director Darren Aronofsky and hailing from his production company Protozoa and Jane Root’s Nutopia. 

New scientific research is shattering conventional wisdom about the human body and offering fascinating insights into how we can unlock our body’s superpowers to fight illness, perform better, and even reverse the aging process. 

This science is put to the test by Hemsworth, who, despite being in peak superhero condition, is on a personal mission to learn how to extend our health, strength, and intellect further into our later years. 

Undergoing a series of epic trials and extraordinary challenges in order to understand the limits of the human body, he’ll learn firsthand how we can live better for longer by discovering ways to regenerate damage, maximize strength, build resilience, supercharge memory, and confront mortality. Entertaining, immersive, and life-changing, Limitless will rewrite the rulebook on living better for longer.

Over the course of six episodes, Hemsworth underwent six challenges that pushed his mind and body to the limit and beyond.

Mastering Stress

In episode one, the Thor star set out to conquer stress — something we are all too familiar with today. 

According to Dr. Modupe Akinola, a social psychologist, assistant professor at Columbia Business School, and Hemsworth’s episode one mentor, the key to overcoming stress is to master and harness it, rather than avoiding stressful situations. 

“We’re more stressed now than we’ve ever been and what we need, what is clear, is that you can’t turn off,” said Akinola. “Your phone can be on all day, all night. You will get pinged all the time. The economy is crazy — healthcare challenges. So yes, we are more stressed out than ever. We know that from some of the health-related outcomes we’re seeing. And so this need to learn how to be healthier in the presence of the stress is even more important.” 

As humans, we adapt and we change. Now, we’re having to learn to evolve with the technology that we’ve created. 

By following the techniques provided to him by Akinola, Hemsworth worked his way up to facing a harrowing walk across a crane atop a 900-foot skyscraper. What’s more, he was able to find his inner zen amidst a tornado of external everyday stress triggers.

Supercharging Our Memory

Another challenge in the gauntlet Hemsworth faced was one of both mind and body. In episode five, Clinical Associate Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences at Stanford University Dr. Sharon Sha trains Hemsworth to navigate the unforgiving landscape of the Australian Outback. 

A far cry from her daily meetings with patients, clinical trial work with patients and trainees, and research in the pursuit of a cure to neurodegenerative disease, Sha was tasked with helping the actor push past his limits to become “Chris Hemsworth 2.0″ by increasing his cognitive abilities.

Chris Hemsworth and Otis meet the first nations tribe of Otis Carey’s ancestral home. (National Geographic for Disney+/Craig Parry)

“We took the premise here in the episode that you are relatively healthy,” Sha said. “What are your concerns? How do we keep your brain healthy here? And so we said, if for a typical person who might already be healthy, how can we supercharge you or really take these areas that we know can reduce the risk of developing dementia and apply that to your day-to-day routine? Or how can all of us apply that in our day-to-day routine?” 

Becoming a Superhero

By many measures, Chris Hemsworth is in almost superhuman shape — mentally and physically. However, the Limitless series showed that even the healthiest individual can climb to new heights and break through barriers. 

Akinola and Sha hope the series inspires viewers to embark on their own “Limitless” journey. 

“I hope that each person will take one or two things from each of the episodes and try them,” said Akinola. “And I think if more people try them on for size, people will know what might work for them and will learn techniques that will help them be happier and healthier and hopefully live longer.”

Although most of us don’t plan to walk to the edge of a 900-foot skyscraper or swim 200 meters across an Arctic fjord any time soon, the techniques and tools revealed by Akinola, Sha, and the other experts in the series provide a platform to increased longevity. 

If Thor can do it, so can you. 

Limitless with Chris Hemsworth is available to stream on Disney+ Wednesday, November 16, 2022.

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Limitless with Chris Hemsworth: The Path to Longevity

November 15, 2022
By Aron Vaughan

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