Breathing is an involuntary function that keeps us alive. What if it not only kept us alive but also healthier? A new study found that people can do breathing exercises to help prevent hypertension.
Breathing Exercises to Help Prevent Hypertension
Breathing is a necessary function that gives our blood oxygen, allowing our muscles and organs to function at all. Our bodies also breathe harder or slower depending on our current situation.
When we’re stressed, we tend to take in short, shallow breaths. During exercise, we breathe heavily, trying to get more oxygen to our muscles. When we’re sleeping, we breathe long, even breaths.
Recently, researchers from the University of Melbourne and Macquarie University in Australia discovered a correlation between neurons controlling blood pressure and breathing during the onset of essential hypertension. Essential hypertension is the occurrence of high blood pressure without a known cause.
What the researchers found was that blood pressure and breathing are connected through the sympathetic nervous system. The nervous system sends nerve signals to the blood vessels and heart.
When a person changes their breathing rate, each breath leads to a different neuronal activity. These changes cause fluctuations in blood pressure levels.
The study reports, “By interrupting activity between the neurons that control these two functions during adolescence, the development of high blood pressure in adulthood is dramatically reduced.”
That means adolescents can utilize breathing exercises to help prevent hypertension in their adult year.
The report explains that breathing changes can change blood pressure levels in adults, but the results are only temporary.
Breathing exercises are very common among yoga enthusiasts, meditators, and athletes. Controlled breathing can calm down the mind and body and immediately reduce stress.
According to a 2016 study, regularly participating in yoga can potentially help people with prehypertension decrease and regulate their blood pressure.
An estimated 100,000 deaths can be prevented each year if people tried harder to lower their blood pressure and monitor their heart health.
Try meditating and taking deep breaths each day for 10 minutes. If you find yourself getting stressed, count to ten and breathe from your diaphragm.
Educating teens to manage their stress can lead to a life of good heart health and healthy habits.