Breathwork Helps Tame Stress, Benefits Your Mind and Body

Breathwork Helps Tame Stress, Benefits Your Mind and Body

STORY AT-A-GLANCE

  • Controlled breathing helps lower your heart rate and blood pressure, improves your immune system, lowers stress hormone levels and balances carbon dioxide and oxygen blood levels
  • Most people are shallow breathers, with most of the effort coming from the upper chest, but deep, abdominal breathing activates the parasympathetic system, helping to calm and relax your mind and body
  • Carbon dioxide (CO2) helps utilize oxygen, so raising CO2 tolerance helps improve your health. A practical exercise developed by Dr. K. Buteyko can be done in minutes a day to improve your CO2 tolerance
  • Belisa Vranich, psychologist and author, calls breathing exercises “massively practical.” Consider doing them for a few minutes each day, including Box breathing, coherent breathing or relaxing 4-7-8 exercises

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