October 13th, 2023 12:00am
In the whirlwind of fast-paced lives, overlooking the simple act of breathing is easy. However, the way we breathe has profound impacts on our health and well-being. Simply changing how long we exhale and inhale can greatly improve different aspects of our health and wellness, mentally and physically. Discover the benefits of practicing slow and deep breathing, and rethink the way you inhale and exhale.
Taking deeper breaths is one of the many ways divers improve their air consumption—a testimonial to the impact of breathing techniques. Though deep breathing can help prepare you for diving if you want to pick up the hobby, it will also lead to better energy levels and improved functioning of your bodily systems.
Shallow breaths fail to fully oxygenate the body. Deep breathing, on the other hand, encourages full oxygen exchange, meaning more intake of oxygen and better expulsion of carbon dioxide. The body relies on oxygen to grow and reproduce cells and help break down energy sources.
Slow and deep breathing stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which controls the body’s relaxation response. This helps reverse the stress response, reducing stress hormones, slowing down the heart rate, and lowering blood pressure, thus promoting a state of calm and relaxation. Slow and deep breathing lowers stress and anxiety, providing many mental health benefits, from improved clarity to boosted serotonin levels.
Regular practice of slow and deep breathing can enhance cognitive functions. Oxygenation optimizes brain functionality, leading to enhanced concentration, better problem-solving abilities, and improved memory.
Focused and mindful breathing also helps clear the mind, improving focus and concentration as you become more aware and intentional with each inhale and exhale. Improving your breathing by going slower and deeper is a natural cognitive enhancer, fostering mental clarity and maximizing brain health.
Breathing plays a key role in our digestion. Deep breathing activates the diaphragm, which massages our digestive organs as it expands and contracts, improving their efficiency. This can lead to better nutrient absorption, improved bowel movement, and overall better gut health.
The benefits of practicing slow and deep breathing extend well beyond the act of oxygenating our bodies. Breathing is a simple and free tool that we can use to enhance our physical and mental well-being in many ways. So slow down, and breathe deeply.