Peace Amidst Life’s Chaos

Whether you’re an athlete, teacher, firefighter or retiree, chances are you experience the pressures of life’s demands every day. If you ever feel stress there is something I need you to know:

When you breathe in and fill your lower belly with air, you are stimulating a nerve root that actually calms your mind and body. It’s a scientific fact. Gently breathing into your lower belly (think belly button) can reduce stress, lower blood pressure, improve digestion, reduce inflammation, improve cardiovascular health and enhance your immune system! All of that in a few deep breathes? Yes! It is the key to having grace under pressure.

The reason this works is there is a nerve root below your belly button known as the Vagus Nerve. When you fill your lower abdomen with an inhalation, the vagus nerve is stimulated and activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which calms your mind and body. It biologically reverses the stress response!

Here’s how to practice:

1. Inhale through your nose (if comfortable)
2. Fill your lower belly with air, then fill your chest.
3. Exhale as your belly gently moves towards your spine.
4. Repeat at least 3-5 times.
5. Be gentle. Don’t force anything. If you’re feeling light headed, just relax and resume normal breathing.

People almost always feel better from doing this. The challenge is often remembering to practice! Acupuncture treatments also stimulate the “rest and digest” response, calming the nervous system and creating a healing response for your body.

I challenge you to practice this right now and send me an e-mail ([email protected]) letting me know what shifts you notice! Most people feel more calm and relaxed.

Imagine if you did this three times a day (before each meal!) or at stop lights. Maybe some of that energy you use to hold all your stress in place would be freed up for you to use for healing and having fun! Techniques like belly breathing can enhance an Acupuncture treatment as well as empower you to reduce your own stress levels outside of treatment. Call us at Advanced PMR and schedule a consultation with one of our highly skilled acupuncturists. They can help enhance and reinforce you new deep breathing practice. That way your happy, calm self can enjoy greater ease and health!

Posted in: Acupuncture

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