Benefits of Deep Breathing

Breathing is, of course, vital, but doing so deeply and properly gives you many other benefits.

It almost seems silly to even discuss it, though; after all, we all do it without thinking about it too much. But the WAY we do is a different matter and can make significant difference to your health, well being and longevity.

We instinctively knew how when we were babies; just observe a sleeping baby, or watch your pet asleep. You will see abdomens expanding first and then the chest for a full, rythmic, deep and natural breath.

Many of us, however, have relearned how to do this incorrectly, ie, short and shallow, primarily with the chest and holding the stomach in.

The purpose is to take in oxygen, which enriches blood, which delivers nutrients to the body and brain and then exports toxins, which are then exhaled.

Doing this deeply delivers more oxygen to the bloodstream with less work for the heart.

What is it? What's it feel like? And how do you do it?

Lie on the floor on your back, one hand on your abdomen, one hand just below your sternum; extend your length about an inch (like standing taller), expand your rib cage a bit (not with air, with muscles); mouth closed, tongue relaxed.

Take a slow, deep breath, through the nose, letting your abdomen rise first; then, let it fill up into your rib cage or chest; it'll feel like a balloon expanding with your hands where they are; exhale completely. Do this slowly and deeply five times.

You probably feel relaxed already.

Now, what just happened?

By letting your abdomen rise first you created room for your diaphram to expand downward into this space thereby creating a vacuum and room for your lungs to fill more completely.

Your lungs took in more oxygen because you gave them more room to function better.

More oxygen is then delivered to your bloodstream which distributes nutrients throughout your system.

When your blood is oxygen rich, more oxygen is delivered to your body and brain with less work for your heart and circulatory system.

Wow! You just did something that relaxed you, made you feel good, amd improved your health . . . for free!!

This is called adominal or bellows or conscious breathing.

Taking conscious control and practicing doing this deeply enriches your health; and it will become more natural and hapitual with practice and time.

Among the many benefits of deep breathing are;

*the heart and circulatory system produce more with less work

*diaphram and abdomen are massaged, relaxed and strengthened

*stomach and liver are massaged, improving digestion and function

*more oxygen reaches the brain, delivering nutrients

*quality of life, mood, well being and longevity are enhanced

*it's free . . . and it feels good!

Breathing is vital, but doing it deeply and properly brings many more healthy benefits. Simple but powerful meditation breathing techniques are the key to meditation practice.

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