Benefits of deep breathing ~ lower your heart rate within seconds.
Deep breathing is one of the best ways to lower stress in the body. When you breathe deeply, it sends a message to your brain that everything is okay around you. Your fight or flight responses go silent and cause you to calm down and relax. Shallow breathing does the opposite.
Apart from calming your entire nervous system, what happens when you breathe deeply and calmly is that your brain receives more oxygen which improves your focus.
Benefits of Deep breathing:
- Deep breathing improves general health
- Deep breathing lowers blood pressure.
- Deep breathing slows your heart rate.
- Deep breathing releases endorphins to help you relax.
- Deep breathing can improve your energy level.
- Deep breathing helps to clean out the lungs.
- Deep breathing reduces anxiety.
- Deep breathing improves posture
- Deep breathing improves digestion and assimilation of food.
- Deep breathing strengthens the lungs.
- Deep breathing improves cellular regeneration.
- Deep breathing elevates moods and make you feel good.
- Deep breathing relieves pain.
- Deep breathing improves brain plasticity.
- Deep breathing aids weight loss.
Deep breathing releases endorphins ~ your brain is a healthy drug factory:
The anatomy of Deep Breathing. Inhalation: As the lungs fill, the diaphragm descends as the belly expands. The contraction of the diaphragm sends a message to the brain to release dopamine which creates a calming effect. Dopamine also enhances mood and acts as a pain reliever.
When we are confronted with pain, it is our nature to hold our breath, but breathing through the pain is actually what will help us the most. When we breathe deeply, we oxygenate the blood, which causes our brain to release endorphins. It is these endorphins help reduce stress in the body and decrease levels of pain.
Endorphins are among the brain chemicals known as neurotransmitters, secreted by the pituitary gland, which function to transmit electrical signals within the nervous system. Endorphins interact with the opiate receptors in the brain to reduce our perception of pain and act similarly to drugs such as codeine. Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. For example, the feeling that follows a run, workout or orgasm is often described as “euphoric.” They are sometimes referred to as the brain’s “feel-good” chemicals, and are the body’s natural painkillers.
Oxytocin often referred to as the love hormone for its ability to lower anxiety and producefeelings of pleasure. Deep breathing, hugging someone and laughing are also activities that prompt the brain’s release of oxytocin. … In other words, opioids activate certain brain pathways that stimulate pleasure.
Oxytocin is produced in the hypothalamus and is secreted into the bloodstream by the posterior pituitary gland. Secretion depends on electrical activity of neurons in the hypothalamus – it is released into the blood when these cells are excited.
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter, or chemical messenger, that mediates many complex processes in the brain. It’s perhaps best known for its role in regulating mood. It’s also thought to help regulate several life-sustaining functions, such as breathing.
*The difference between hormones and neurotransmitters: They are two separate chemical messengers with some overlap as some molecules can act as both hormones and neurotransmitters. One example of this overlap is norepinephrine which can be released into the bloodstream by the adrenal glands as a hormone or can be released by sympathetic nerve endings as a neurotransmitter.
Reduce stress and anxiety and improve focus
More than deep rhythmic breathing – which you can do while in a meeting or driving without anybody even noticing – deep breathing also goes by the names of diaphragmatic breathing, abdominal breathing, belly breathing, and paced respiration.
When you breathe deeply, the air coming in through your nose fully fills your lungs, and the lower belly rises. More scientific facts on nose-breathing.
The benefits of deep breathing are innumerable.
Breathing exercises have a variety of benefits for the body that not only make you healthier, but can reduce your stress and anxiety levels as well. If you’re feeling tired or are not able to focus on your work, deep-breathing exercises can help.
Deep breathing increases the supply of oxygen to your brain and stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which promotes a state of calmness.
Mouth versus Nose breathing
Ear, nose and throat specialists know that the nose is responsible for 30 functions other than filtration and warming the air. There is a gas released into the nasal cavity – Nitric Oxide – which sterilises the incoming air, opens up the airways and enhances the amount of oxygen that is taken up in the blood.
Watch some of these videos to learn more and even about how your breathing style influences the development of your facial muscles and features.
Some helpful videos
More reading on deep breathing: Brain Performance Centers