Did you know that deep breathing can help us eliminate toxins more effectively and even combat pain through the release of endorphins?
Deep breathing or slow breathing gives calm and well-being to the person who practices it on a regular basis. This type of technique, where the person is accustomed to take deep puffs of air, retaining that oxygen and exhaling it at a time longer than usual, is very common in yoga or mindfulness .
However, it goes without saying that, beyond these practices that have that classic link with Buddhism and meditation, are not very common in our day to day.
Thus, it is very rare that we even stop to think “how we breathe”.
However, interesting fact is important to know that scientists at Stanford University have developed an interesting study that shows how we can benefit from this type of breathing.
Mark Krasnow , biochemist and director of this work, even explains that we have identified a small group of neurons that mediated between this type of breathing and relaxation, attention and even efficiency to regulate emotions and reduce anxiety.
We are, without doubt, facing a simple and accessible strategy that we should all practice. All you have to do is open your mouth and breathe deeply, calmly and slowly.
You are already doing it? Great! Here’s how you can benefit.
1. Deep breathing to regulate stress and anxiety
Breathing is an action that we do involuntarily. We inhale oxygen to obtain and create energy at the cellular level.
Then, we exhale carbon dioxide, that by-product resulting from cellular respiration.
This almost magical process benefits us in a remarkable way whenever it is carried out in a slow, rhythmic and deep way.
- However, something that most have ever experienced is that when we are frightened or when we feel panic , our breathing becomes choppy and very fast: that before mentioned process is broken and is altered causing the heart to “shoot”
- By giving our body oxygen more slowly, steadily and evenly, our muscles also stop being tight.
It is then that the sympathetic system, meanwhile, stops sending its high peaks of cortisol and adrenaline to our body.
All our body and our mind enters a state of calm very adequate.
2. Eliminate toxins
This fact is interesting: our bodies are designed to release much of their toxins through the breath.
- Carbon dioxide is a natural toxic waste that comes from the metabolic processes of our body and therefore must be expelled on a regular basis.
- However, when our lungs are accustomed to carrying out quick breaths, we do not get to expel all those elements of waste.
It would, therefore, be very convenient for us to be aware of this, and that, at least for 2 or 3 times a day, we spent at least 10 minutes to breathe deeply.
3. We reduce the sensation of pain
Something we often do almost unconsciously when we feel pain is holding our breath. It is a natural mechanism of our brain when we receive a blow, an impact, when we are injured …
However, and in case of chronic and regular pain due to arthritis, lupus or fibromyalgia, we will do very well.
Try holding your breath for a few seconds and take a deep, slow breath. In this way, we will release endorphins , those natural analgesics from the body.
4. It will help us improve our posture
Something as easy as practicing deep breathing from today will allow us to improve our body layout and, above all, the back-neck axis.
By filling our air lungs we stimulate the spine to place it in a more harmonious, balanced and correct posture.
Do not hesitate to try it.
5. We stimulate the lymphatic system
The lymphatic system is an essential part of the body’s immune system and is composed of a complex network of lymphatic vessels, tissues, organs and lymph nodes that fulfill many functions.
One of them, the one that carries out the lymphatic fluid, is to release from our organism the remains of dead cells and other debris.
Deep breathing will help us achieve this by allowing the lymph to flow properly so our body can work more efficiently.
6. Take care of our heart
Something that is also interesting to know is that aerobic exercise (cardio) uses fat as energy, while anaerobic exercise (strength training) uses glucose as energy.
However, if we get used to practicing the “exercise” of deep breathing every day, we will be performing a fabulous cardio routine .
This will improve our cardiovascular health and help us burn fat cells.
7. Improved digestion
Deep breathing improves our digestion . Guess what way?
- Very easy. By giving our body more oxygen and more regularly, we also supply it to the digestive organs to work more efficiently.
- In addition, we increase the blood flow and stimulate the intestinal action in turn .
- Nor can we forget that this type of breathing regulates the nervous system, that way we feel calmer and the digestion is carried out in a calm and efficient way .
We even absorb nutrients better!
Thanks for reading!