Lower your Blood pressure by simple Breathing exercises
For a moment close your eyes and sit up straight. Take a relaxed in-breath while counting five; then again count to five as you exhale. Go ahead and try this right now for another six breaths.
It feels good, isn’t it? Did you know that this life-giving lungful of air just reduced your blood pressure?
A study published in hypertension in 2005 showed that by taking just six conscious breaths in a time period of 1 minute, you can reduce your systolic blood pressure by 3.4 -3.9 mm Hg on an average. A long line of evidence echoed similar results that deep, slow breathing can lower your blood pressure.
In fact, the US food and drug administration (FDA) has actually approved ‘deep’ breathing as a treatment for lowering stress and to nudge down high blood pressure.
Breathing exercises work in lowering Blood Pressure (BP)
1 :: By increasing circulation to small blood vessels and reducing peripheral resistance, breathing lowers blood pressure.
2 :: It helps to oxygenate the blood and slows heartbeat, which stabilizes the blood pressure.
3 :: Conscious sine wave breathing stimulates endorphin production. Endorphins are neurochemicals, which can have direct effect in reduction of blood pressure.
4 :: Sine wave breathing regulates autonomic imbalance by stimulating parasympathetic nervous system, which drops high blood pressure.
5 :: Relaxed breathing exercises improve baroreflex sensitivity. Baroreceptors are specialized neurons, which upon activation reduces blood pressure.
6 :: It reduces chemoreceptor activation, which is a sensory receptor that can cause hypertension by enhancing sympathetic activity.
7 :: It reduces the feeling of perceived stress and reduces reactivity of HPA axis (produces fight or flight response)
8 :: It reduces inflammatory cytokines and oxidative stress, which can reduce risk of atherosclerosis.
Don’t hold your breath
Under chronic stress, we tend to take shallow breaths and sometimes hold it unconsciously. This is called inhibitory breathing. It can make blood more acidic and lead to increase in blood pressure.
Conscious slow sine wave breathing at times of stress can reverse that effect.
Sine wave Breathing helps get rid of the body salt
Quick and shallow breathing diverts blood to brain – good when the boss is yelling – but can reduces blood flow to kidneys. This makes kidneys less efficient in removing excess sodium form body.
Breathing redistributes blood to each and every vital organ (including kidneys) and helps to move that salt along.
Pump your diaphragm (Inspiratory muscle)
Inspiratory muscle fatigue and in particular diaphragmatic fatigue is associated with increased sympathetic nervous system activation, heart rate and blood pressure.
Inspiratory muscle (diaphragm) training for 6 weeks can reduce both diastolic (5.5mm Hg) and systolic blood pressure (7.9 mmHg on an average), according to a study in International Journal of Cardiology 2011
Devices aided breathing exercises can lower BP
By using certain devices you can keep track of your blood pressure while performing breathing exercises. Monitoring your blood pressure while you are breathing through a device can reduce your blood pressure by 7.2mm Hg on an average, according to a study in American journal of hypertension.