So simple yet so powerful, taking time to be still and breathe deeply will give you more energy throughout your day, as well as other health benefits, and you will quickly begin to notice the difference.
Here are some of the some of the ways this practice can transform you, plus tips on how to do it for the best results.
Deep Breathing: Isn’t that Just Hot Air?
Far from it. Inhaling deeply, on purpose, will improve your mental and physical outlook on life. This action sends more oxygen into the body which cleanses the blood and, in turn, benefits all the other organs. For people that are sedentary, deep breathing rejuvenates the brain. For others that are constantly on the move, strong intakes of air can center them so that they are not constantly overwhelmed. Deep breathing even helps you to sleep better and lowers blood pressure.
How to Do It
Don’t just breathe into your chest. Inhale deeply through your nose into your lower stomach/abdomen, pushing your tummy out as you do so. Hold your breath for a slow count of ten and exhale for a slow count of ten. (Fewer seconds is just fine. The main point is that you are consistent with the amount of time you take with each inhale and exhale.)
Note: Its important that your breaths are slow, deep and rhythmic. Remember to use your diaphragm.
Why it Works
When you deep breathe, your lungs then expand so that air can travel down into the whole lung. The more air you push into your lungs, the more energy and revitalization that can transform your body.
Here are some ways deep breathing can totally change your life.
- Detoxification: Our lymphatic system is in charge of flushing out toxins and removing waste from our immune system. Deep breathing gives toxins the hit the road treatment, pushing them through our body prevents illness and sickness.
- Calming: Breathing deeply gets us to our natural state fast that natural state being peace. Inhaling with purpose stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system. Translation: It triggers our relaxation response which calms us down.
- Happiness: Deep breathing increases the serotonin in our brain and releases more of the ones that modulate mood. Now thats a breath of fresh air!
- Pain: Ever wonder why women giving birth focus on their breath? Turns out that concentration on it, like with happiness, releases neuro chemicals that control pain. When we breathe deeply, we oxygenate the blood. This causes our brain to release endorphins which help reduce stress in the body and decrease levels of pain.
- Posture: You can thank your mother for your great posture, but did you know that filling your lungs organically encourages you to straighten your spine and stand or sit taller?
- Mental Focus: When the committees in our brain are distracting us with shiny, happy things, or when we ruminate on the past or the future, taking a deep breath anchors us and brings us back to the present. Even if the present moment happens to be painful (say childbirth or some emotional trauma) the very act of in-taking air can recalibrate us back to balance.
- Aging: Because of the happy factor, along with great circulation, deep breathing helps us live longer. Not surprisingly, its a well-known stress reliever for our fast paced, hectic lives. It gives us more joy, peace and contentment. What are a few wrinkles when compared to that?
- Productivity: Being intentional with our breath is just the beginning of living a more intentional life. By actually slowing down and breathing, more gets accomplished. More to the point, it gets accomplished well. The end result is more focus, clarity and presence of mind. Ahhhh exhale.
by Andrea Frazer for SimpleRx
Andrea Frazer is a writer, wife, mom to two Tweens and a rescue dog. Check back for more of her posts and tips on healthy living and healthcare awareness as well as the latest news and savings from SimpleRx Prescription Discount Program.