'20/20' Busts 10 Body Myths


"Certainly by age 20 you ought to know your blood pressure," Oz said. "And you ought to check your blood pressure at least every five years after that."

The optimal blood pressure is 115 over 75. But fewer than half of all Americans have that. And if you get above 140 over 90, you're in the danger zone. You can monitor the numbers yourself at the corner drug store, for free. And if your pressure is too high, the good news is, hypertension can be reversed.

"If you're going to remember one number, if you're going to focus and fixate on one number in your entire health profile, it better be your blood pressure because that's where the money is," Oz said.

How to lower your blood pressure:

1. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, nine servings a day.

2. Exercise -- even walk -- at least 30 minutes a day.

3. If necessary, talk to your doctor about medication.

There's a Wrong Way to Breathe

It turns out there's actually a better way to take a deep breath than what you're probably doing.

"I would say less than one in 10 Americans knows what a deep breath is because we were all taught to believe that it's about straining our ribcage up," said Oz. "It's not. That doesn't even feel good."

The key to deep breathing is to use the stomach, not just the chest, according to Oz. Take in a breath and push out the stomach. That pulls down the diaphragm, a strong muscle, which pulls down the lungs, allowing air deep in the lungs. When you breathe out, pull in the stomach. That moves the diaphragm up, pushing the air out of the lungs.

Oz recommends taking four seconds to breathe in and four seconds to breathe out.

"That's a deep breath," Oz said. "That's one of the best ways to cope with stress. It's one of the best ways to deal with asthma, it's one of the best ways to get your lungs to truly fill with the air we know is of value."

On June 10, rowers Jordan Hanssen, Brad Vickers, Greg Spooner and Dylan LeValley set out on an incredible journey - the only American team in what could be a grueling three-month long race across the Atlantic Ocean in rowboats. There is no prize money - just the chance to be the first Americans to do it.

It's a challenge that's particularly important to Hanssen, whose father died of an asthma-related illness and who also has a mild form of asthma himself.

Hanssen was diagnosed with mild asthma as child. In a twist of fate, when he got to college, he discovered he had a real talent for competitive rowing - a sport that demands extraordinary breathing power.

"A rower's power comes from his lungs, and so does everyone's power," Hanssen said.

But, Hanssen said, "I think I'm pretty lucky to be in a position to row across the ocean. I think I was given the lungs that my father didn't have. "

Right now the Americans are in the lead, on their boat named the James Robert Hanssen - in honor of Jordan's father and the gift of a healthy breath. [Click here to read more about the rowers' and their progress.]

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