A clear connection

For thousands of years, deep breathing exercises have been used to calm the mind, relax the body, and gain awareness. Recent scientific studies suggest a clear connection between deep breathing, relaxation and improvements in our health.

“Relaxation is more than a state of mind; it physically changes the way your body functions. When your body is relaxed breathing slows, blood pressure and oxygen consumption decrease, and some people report an increased sense of well-being. This is called the ‘relaxation response.’”

“Relaxation Techniques for Health: An Introduction.” NCCAM. National Institutes of Health, National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, DD Feb 2013. Web. 5 Jul 2013.

“Research has focused primarily on illness and conditions in which stress appears to play a role either as the cause of the condition or as a factor that can make the condition worse. In general, relaxation techniques appear to be safe.”

“Stress and Relaxation Techniques: What the Science Says.” NCCAM Clinical Digest. National Institutes of Health, Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, DD Dec 2012. Web. 5 Jul 2013.

Slow breathing improves arterial baroreflex sensitivity and decreases blood pressure in essential hypertension.

Joseph CN, Porta C, Casucci G, Casiraghi N, Maffeis M, Rossi M, Bernardi L. Hypertension. 2005 Oct; 46(4):714-8. Epub 2005 Aug 29. PubMed PMID: 16129818. Web. 5 Jul 2013.

Biofeedback assisted diaphragmatic breathing and systematic relaxation versus propranolol in long term prophylaxis of migraine.

Kaushik R, Kaushik RM, Mahajan SK, Rajesh V. Complement Ther Med. 2005 Sep; 13(3):165-74. PubMed PMID: 16150370. Web. 5 Jul 2013.

Opposing breathing therapies for panic disorder: a randomized controlled trial of lowering vs raising end-tidal P(CO₂).

Kim S, Wollburg E, Roth WT. J Clin Psychiatry. 2012 Jul; 73(7):931-9. doi: 10.4088/JCP.11m07068. PubMed PMID: 22901344. Web. 5 Jul 2013.

Cenala has provided this material for your information. It is not intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your primary health care provider. We encourage you talk with your health care provider if you are considering using breathing exercises for a particular health condition.