Woman on beach stretching and warming up. Breathe Better, Feel Better

Breathe Better, Feel Better

Breathing. It comes naturally for most of us. But do you know HOW you breathe, can either make you stressed or relaxed? It appears we’re doing it all wrong. We’ve actually forgotten how to breathe!

Image with the word Breathe. Breathe Better, Feel Better

Breathe Better, Feel Better

Sounds crazy, I know, but consider this:

 

Scientists have done loads of research on the subject and have discovered that shallow, chest breathing, is really bad for you, while deep breathing has many health benefits.

And deep breathing is our natural state of being.

Except of course, if you’re being chased by a bear… Or just inhaled a double latte!

 

Shallow breathing, at the top of the lungs, stimulates your “stress response.”

It floods the body with stress hormones, weakening the body on every level. When we’re upset, high on caffeine, or really excited, our bodies can become flooded with the stress hormone cortisol. Prolonged release of cortisol can destroy healthy muscle and bone, slow down healing and impair digestion and endocrine function (exhausting the adrenal glands) and weakening the immune system.

Woman taking a deep Breath.  Breathe Better, Feel Better

Breathing deep into your lungs stimulates your

“relaxation response.”

 

It releases tension and promotes feelings of calm and peace. Powerful healing chemicals flood the body releasing endorphins, your body’s feel-good pain killers. Stress-related problems ranging from panic attacks to digestive disorders will be reduced or eliminated.

Observe babies as they sleep. They are perhaps our greatest teachers. Peacefully they breathe; inhaling and exhaling deep into their lungs. Their minds and bodies are at ease, there are no emotional issues intruding upon their night time slumber. How wonderful to feel so carefree; feeling safe and calm would certainly be mirrored by our sleep patterns and especially in our waking moments while breathing.

 

Your body needs oxygen. Deep breathing provides oxygen to all of your cells giving them the life force you need to be healthy and vibrant.

Physical Benefits of Deep Breathing

 

  • Increase your energy level

  • Improve your quality of sleep

  • Lower blood Pressure

  • Relieve stress and emotional tension

  • Promote weight loss

  • Reduce Pain

  • Improve circulation

Be Aware of Your Breathing

 

You can relearn healthy breathing by being conscious of how you are breathing, your thoughts and your posture. Do you find your shoulders are so tense they are creeping up toward your ears? Are you holding your breath due to tension and anxiety?

 

Simple daily reminders will help you develop healthy lifestyle habits. Post notes around your home. Everywhere you spend your time; in your car, bathroom, kitchen, workplace, etc. Print mindful reminders such as these, and make a conscious effort as you read them inhaling and exhaling slowly and deeply. 

RELAX. BREATHE DEEP. ALL IS WELL.

Get Calm and relaxed with Mindful Breathing 

 

Mindful breathing will change your life.

 

Practice this breathing technique when you need to get calm and centered. Place one hand on your chest and the other on the lower part of your stomach (diaphragm). Exhale deeply. Inhale deep through your nose first filling the bottom portion of your lungs, expanding your diaphragm. If done properly your shoulders will barely move. Fill your lungs to maximum capacity for a count of 6. Hold for 7 seconds. As you inhale you might say, “I am calm,” or “I breathe in calm.

Exhaling

 

Exhale long through your mouth expelling air for a count of 11. Begin at the top of your lungs and move down until all air is expelled. As you exhale say, “I exhale tension,” or I let go of tension.” Stay calm and focused repeating your words and keeping your focus on your breath. Visualize your body relaxing. Repeat several times – two or more times each day.

Resources:

Three Breathing Exercises by  Andrew Weil, M.D.

The Destructive Effect of High Cortisol Levels by WomentoWomen.com

 

Deep Breathing Can Reduce Stress, Fatigue and High Blood Pressure by Natural News.com

Beginner’s Yoga by Eden’s Corner – A daily yoga practice will help you habituate deep breathing for a healthier body and happier life.

 

Breathing Techniques for Greater Health and Fitness by Mercola M.D.

Reni and Scampy at the beach, for the newsletter.

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