Breathe deeply and lower blood pressure

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Did you know …What can you evade the "silent killer" of the United States in minutes using only your own lungs?

"Breathe deeply": it is a phrase that we have all heard countless times. But it means more than you can imagine, according to Dr. David Anderson, of the National Institutes of Health. Anderson says that a few minutes of deep breathing on a daily basis can lower blood pressure levels. He believes that the way we breathe can alter the way our bodies regulate blood pressure.

Studies also show that concentrating on breathing can relieve stress levels … stimulate brain growth … and reduce the risk of heart attack. However, many of us stop addressing breathing habits as part of our overall health strategy.

"We are out of breath as we do with our hearts," says Carla Ardito, an expert in respiration at the Integral Yoga Institute in Manhattan. But, explains Ardito, the difference is fundamental, because unlike the beating of our heart, "we can work on our breathing".

The sheer risks of high blood pressure

Statistics indicate that up to 65 million Americans have hypertension (dangerously high blood pressure). Hypertension brings a high risk of …

Heart attacks Strokes Kidney damage Blindness Dementia

People with hypertension are often unaware of their condition, which is why they are often called "the silent killer". By the time symptoms appear, it is possible that serious and irreversible damage has already occurred.

Deep breathing offers answers

Anderson and other doctors believe that deep breathing offers answers, and a 2002 study suggests they are right. In 2002, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a device designed to lower blood pressure by teaching users how to slow their breathing. The device, called RESPeRATE, measures the rhythm of your breathing by detecting thoracic or abdominal movements.

Users follow a series of chimes that indicate inhalations and exhalations to decrease the speed of breathing from a typical frequency of 16 to 19 breaths per minute to 10 or less. Clinical trials found blood pressure drops of 10 to 15 points for people who used the device for 15 minutes every day for 2 months.

Dr. William J. Elliot, who led part of the research, was surprised by the magnitude of the impact of slow breathing on blood pressure, although no one can explain why it works. It's "still a bit of a black box," he says.

The strong price tag of health?

It has been more than a decade since the FDA approved the RESPONSE, but many still do not know the connection between slow breathing and blood pressure. Part of the problem may be the high cost of the main slow breathing devices. But the fact is that you do not need to spend money to slow down your breathing and improve your health.

Simply by concentrating on his breathing, he directs the energy to the parasympathetic nervous system, says Ardito. You send your whole body to a state of "relaxation and reception".

Do not count your breaths

To get the best results, experts say you should never count your breathing or watch the clock. Counting or tracking time prevents relaxation, which is key to the benefits of slow breathing. Instead of a stopwatch or a stopwatch, some experts suggest using music as a regulator. Select a song (or a set of songs) with a slow and regular rhythm, and allow your breath to automatically adjust to the rhythm.

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