Inhalte and exhale deeply.
A mantra that we all have repeated at one time or another to calm or to focus ourselves. But what actually happens in our body and why is our breathing essential, not only for our survival.
We'll show you how to use breathing exercises to combat anxiety, stress and other common discomforts. Take a deep breath and let’s dive into the fascinating research around one of your most important bodily functions - breathing.
The scientific benefits of deep breathing
An average adult breathes 23,040 times every day. You probably breathe unconsciously most of the time. We all breathe day in and day out, without even thinking about it for a second.
Deep breathing has many different names in the literature and is frequently referred to as abdominal breathing, rhythm breathing, diaphragmatic breathing, or colloquially as belly breathing. However, all of the terms refer to connecting your awareness to your breathing. It is a practice that affects your breathing in ways that can bring very well researched benefits to your spirit, mind and body. The important thing, as always, is to create a habit so that you may reap the benefits of deep breathing over the long term.
Breathwork 101 – The Scientific Benefits at a Glance
- By breathwork, oxygen delivery to the brain and all other areas of the body will be improved. This has far-reaching benefits for the health of your brain, your endurance during exercise, and for strengthening your immune system.
- A slower heart rate, typically associated with relaxation and stress reduction.
- A significant decrease in blood pressure, often used by researchers as a signal of deeper relaxation.
- Improved mood, including self-reported improvements in happiness or pleasure, and a reduction in mood disorders such as anxiety and depression.
- Higher quality sleep, even for people with chronic and severe symptoms of insomnia. (Find more tips for better sleep here.)
These scientific benefits all target the fundamental insight that deep breathing has on your mental health: A significant reduction in stress.If we all put ourselves in a typical life situation where we felt stressed, we will conclude that our heartbeat and breathing were significantly faster. An innate fight or flight response in humans.
But by paying attention to our breathing, we may calm our central nervous system and take decisive countermeasures to reduce our physical stress and strain. A study from Michigan State University found that cortisol levels (the so-called stress hormone) begin to decrease after just ten deep breaths. To help you take full advantage of this, we've summarised a simple breathing technique for you.
The Lion’s breath
The lion's breath or Simhasana is a breathing exercise where you stick out your tongue and roar like a lion. Ok cool, but what's the point? This deep breathing exercise may help relax the muscles in your face and jaw, relieve stress and improve cardiovascular function.Let’s do it:
The exercise is best done in a comfortable, seated position, leaning slightly forward and resting your hands on your knees or the floor.
- Spread your fingers as wide as possible.
- Inhale through your nose.
- Open your mouth wide, stick out your tongue and pull it down toward your chin.
- Exhale vigorously, guiding the breath over the base of the tongue.
- While exhaling, make a "Ha" sound coming from deep in your belly as you exhale.
- Breathe normally for a few moments.
- Repeat the lion's breath up to 7 times.
Deep breathing contributes to providing your brain and other crucial organs with more oxygen and nutrients. With our NOUMEN Braincare supplement, you can support your body in providing the nutrients needed for better brain health and less stress. It provides you with the highest quality nutrients that may contribute to less stress, less anxiety and an overall improved focus.