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The Importance of Breathing Right for Your Health and How Moonbird Helps

breathing right

Breathing isn’t a skill we need to learn and master, like walking or using a fork. It happens naturally—from even before we are born to our last moment on earth. So, why are experts so curious about the concept of breathing correctly?

And if breathing right is even a thing, how does it benefit you? You inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide. Isn’t that all there is to it?

Well, yes and no. You got the process right. But inhaling and exhaling isn’t all there is to breathing. If you learn how to breathe properly, it will help you physically, mentally, emotionally, and psychologically.

In this post, we’ll go on a breathtaking journey (pun intended) exploring the physical and mental benefits of breathing right and look at ways you can incorporate this practice into your life.

So, let’s get started.

Physiological Benefits of Breathing Right

When you start breathing properly, you’ll begin to notice several physical benefits. Here are some of them.

Your Blood Pressure Lowers, and Your Heart Rate Slows

Experts say that proper breathing activates your parasympathetic nervous system. This causes your heart rate to decrease and your blood vessels to dilate, lowering blood pressure.

This happens because, as you perform slow, rhythmic breathing, your brain associates it with a deep state of relaxation. So, naturally, your body will slow down along with other functions like digestion.

By training yourself to breathe properly, you can train your body to react more calmly to stressful situations. This will help keep your heart steady and your head clear to face anything with a positive attitude.

Detoxification Improves

There are a lot of detoxification processes going on in our bodies. We know about the liver, which detoxifies harmful substances from the body, and the immune system, which clears your body of harmful microbes. But did you know that breathing also plays a huge role in this detoxification process?

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It’s true. And I feel that breathing doesn’t really get the credit it deserves. Experts say that we release around 70% of the toxins in our body through breathing.

When you start breathing right, releasing toxins in the form of carbon dioxide becomes easier for your body. If not, the pressure falls towards other metabolic processes of the body. They must work overtime to expel these toxins, weakening the body and making it prone to illnesses.

We’ve been wired to take breathing for granted and underestimate the importance of paying attention to our breath. And this is causing problems like decreased tissue function, reduced brain function, and frequent fatigue in a huge chunk of the population.

Helps To Keep All Our Systems Healthy

Breathing right impacts all major systems in our bodies, be it respiratory, circulatory, nervous, digestive, urinary, or lymphatic.

When you’re relaxed and breathe through your nose in a slow, gentle, and even way, this controls your body’s involuntary functions. This results in changes like:

  • Lowered heart rate and blood pressure
  • Reduced stress hormone levels in the blood
  • Reduced lactic acid build-up in muscle tissue
  • Balanced oxygen and CO2 levels in the blood
  • Improved immune system
  • Increased energy

Psychological Benefits of Breathing Right

Those were the physical benefits. But the benefits of breathing right don’t stop there. It also really helps your mental well-being. Have a look.

Endorphin Release

There’s some age-old advice for when you’re stressed – just breathe. And turns out there’s some truth to this advice.

Studies say that simply inhaling deeply and exhaling takes you out of a stressful state.

When stressed, our body switches to an adrenaline-fueled response, known as the fight-or-flight response. This helps you react to life-threatening situations appropriately, which may, in some cases, save your life.

But, research studies say that prolonged exposure to your gadgets causes your body to produce the same response. And though it can be lifesaving in certain situations, if your body is in a constant state of fight-or-flight responses, it can cause severe problems.

Learn more about it in my post, “Technology & Stress: How Does Prolonged Tech Use Lead to Chronic Stress and Depression?

Though there are many ways you can alleviate it, ways that I’ve mentioned in the aforementioned post, the act of pausing for a few moments to regulate your breathing can also create a sense of relief and relaxation that gets you out of this constant stress.

Improved Sleep

Getting quality sleep is one of the most important aspects of having a healthy life. And today, there are a number of things that can keep you awake at night. It can be work stress, worries about things like finances, family, relationships, blue light from your gadgets, and so on.

When these things keep you awake at night, your day is also affected. You may suffer:

  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Problems concentrating
  • Lack of energy
  • Poor work performance
  • And so on

Besides that, research studies also say that adults who get less than 7 hours of sleep every night are more likely to suffer from problems like heart disease, depression, asthma, diabetes, and other illnesses.‌

Research studies say that when you concentrate on proper breathing, it helps you sleep better because, as I already mentioned, breathing right induces less stress and a calmed nervous system.

Besides that, experts also say that proper breathing helps your body produce more melatonin (the sleep hormone), and improves asthma symptoms.

Gradually, this will allow you to sleep better, and it will have an impact on your overall health.

And More…

Besides lowering your stress and helping you sleep better, breathing right also has many other psychological benefits. And the best part about this is you can enjoy all these benefits for free. So, there is literally no reason to not indulge in this exercise more.

Ways You Can Learn to Breathe Better

Now that we’ve identified the benefits of breathing right, let’s take a moment to learn what you can do to help improve your breathing.

Now, I’m not saying that these exercises will make you instantly breathe better. It will take time, and it’s a gradual process. But, after a while, you start to notice the changes. So, patience is a must.

Box Breathing

Box breathing, also known as the 4-4-4 method, is one of the best breathing exercises to help you breathe better. To do this exercise:

  1. Be in a comfortable position, whether you’re standing, sitting on a chair, or lying down. Ensure that you have back support and your feet are firmly touching the floor.
  2. Now, keep one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach.
  3. Breathe in, counting to four. Feel the sensation of air entering your lungs, and observe the rising of your chest and stomach. If your stomach isn’t rising, then you’re shallow breathing. So, make sure that your stomach is rising along with your chest.
  4. Hold your breath for four seconds.
  5. Exhale for four seconds through your mouth.
  6. Repeat as many times as you can. You’ll know when you’re recentered.

Pranayama

The breathing exercise called pranayama comes from an ancient yogi culture in India. Among many types, anulom-vilom is one of the most popular pranayamas.

Some people say that this exercise normalizes your blood pressure, purifies your blood, reduces your risk of heart problems, and improves your sight.

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I don’t know how much of this is true, but one thing I know is that it’s a really good breathing exercise.

  1. To do anulom-vilom pranayama, you must sit on the floor or on your yoga mat with your legs crossed, as shown in the image.
Padmasana [pɑd-mɑ-sɑ-nɑ] is also known as Lotus pose
  • Now close your eyes and use your right thumb to close your right nostril.
  • Slowly inhale air through your left nostril until your lungs are full. Now release your thumb, take your middle finger, and close your left nostril.
  • Now, release the air through your right nostril.
  • Do this for a while and reverse the process.

Mindful Breathing

Mindful breathing is one of the most important meditation techniques. This exercise requires you to pay attention to the sensation of air entering your body and going out.

You can combine this with the box breathing technique. The idea is to be aware of how the air flows inside your body. This is a proven technique to calm your mind and reduce stress.

And So On…

Besides these techniques, there are pursed lips breathing, cardiac coherence breathing, deep breathing, diaphragmatic breathing, and so much more. But most of them have one thing in common: They require you to keep count. This means after a while, it can become hard to do them naturally when you’re actively counting in your head.

This is where Moonbird comes in.

Moonbird Will Help

Moonbird is the world’s first handheld breath pacer, designed to help make proper breathwork more accessible to the general population.

Created by Stefanie Broes, Ph.D., Pharmaceutical Sciences, Moonbird is arguably one of the most sophisticated and intuitive devices on the market for breathing exercises.

So, How Does it Work?

When a mother cradles her baby to sleep on her chest, the baby feels her breath. If mum’s breath is calm, it actually calms the baby down.

The physical touch and the sensation of each deep breath relaxes the baby. Moonbird mimics this phenomenon. It expands, telling your body to breathe in, and contracts to help you breathe out.

After a while, your breathing pattern will align with the device, and you’ll be breathing optimally in no time.

Get your own Moonbird device on the Moonbird website.

Final Thoughts

Isn’t it amazing that an act as simple as breathing right can make such a huge impact on your life? It’s often the most common things in our lives that make the biggest impact. Just like modern technology.

It’s an integral part of our lives, and we don’t really give it much thought while using it. And this becomes our single point of failure. Experts say that prolonged tech use affects us physically, mentally, psychologically, and emotionally.

Visit The Healthier Tech Podcast to learn more about the effects of modern technology on your life and ways you can alleviate those effects without giving up the convenience that comes with modern tech.

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R Blank

R Blank

R Blank is the founder of Healthier Tech and the host of “The Healthier Tech Podcast”, available iTunes, Spotify and all major podcasting platforms.

R has a long background in technology. Previously, R ran a software engineering firm in Los Angeles, producing enterprise-level solutions for blue chip clients including Medtronic, Apple, NBC, Toyota, Disney, Microsoft, the NFL, Ford, IKEA and Mattel.

In the past, he served on the faculty at the University of Southern California Viterbi School of Engineering where he taught software engineering, as well as the University of California, Santa Cruz.

He has spoken at technology conferences around the world, including in the US, Canada, New Zealand and the Netherlands, and he is the co-author of “AdvancED Flex Development” from Apress.

He has an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management and received his bachelor’s degree, with honors, from Columbia University. He has also studied at Cambridge University in the UK; the University of Salamanca in Spain; and the Institute of Foreign Languages in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.

Connect with R on LinkedIn.

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