Conscious Breathing podcast
Conscious breathing and the ability to relax are essential aspects of dealing with stress.
Breathing exercises work by initiating the relaxation response - a physiological mechanism which counteracts the effects of stress and after a time, puts the body and mind into a profound state of relaxation.
Conscious breathing raises levels of oxygen in the blood, slows your heart rate, reduces blood pressure and within minutes will induce a sense of calm by raising the levels of serotonin - the daytime calming hormone - in your blood and reducing the levels of cortisol and adrenaline - the stress hormones.
Other benefits may include improved lung function and digestion, decreased blood sugar and cholesterol, improved immune system function, central physiological stability, greater mental clarity, and a greater sense of self-awareness.