Breathe Deeply. Live Longer.

Right now, as you are reading this, how are you breathing? Are you slumped forward, tensed up and taking shallow breaths? If so, and if this is your fallback breathing style, you are depriving yourself of some vital physical and mental health benefits.

This is something so easy to change, and it can make such a big difference in how you feel every day.

Breathing is important for two reasons: it supplies our bodies and organs with the oxygen necessary for survival, and it rids our bodies of waste products. Oxygen is essential for our brains , nerves, glands and internal organs.  Without it, we would die within minutes. If the brain is deprived of oxygen, it can damage other organs and systems in our bodies. Lack of oxygen is a major cause of heart disease, strokes, and cancer.

Most of us breathe improperly.

Modern technology has made us sedentary most of the day. There is less need to breathe deeply, so we have developed a habit of shallow breathing. When we are in a hurry and rushed, our breathing follows suit. When we are stressed, anxious or focused on a problem, our bodies contract. We bend forward, head down, arms together, with muscles tensed. All of these postures constrict breathing. This shallow breathing style becomes a habit reinforced by our daily lifestyle. (more…)