At it’s essence Pranayama is a mechanism that involves control of breath as a prop to eventually gain control the mind and the thought process. However, rather than delving into brain MRI and “thought” scans it may be less daunting to just see the impact of controlled breathing on physiological processes.
This is from a recent twelve week study published in the International Journal of Yoga:
- “Slow and deep breathing is efficient as it reduces the ventilation in the dead space of the lungs. Shallow breathing replenishes air only at the base of the lungs in contrast to deep breathing that replenishes the air in all parts of the lung. It decreases the effect of stress and strain on the body by shifting the balance of the autonomic system predominantly toward the parasympathetic system and improves the physical and mental health
- Heart rate, systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, and perceived stress scale decreased significantly (P < 0.05) in the study group following 12 weeks slow breathing exercise training, while no significant change (P > 0.05) was observed in body mass index and waist hip ratio. There was no significant change in the control group.”
Effect of Modified Slow Breathing Exercise on Perceived Stress and Basal Cardiovascular Parameters by G.Sunil kayak, G.S Gaur, G.K Pal
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