Tibetans have known for a long time and Western science is now discovering that aging does not have to be a one-way process of decline.
The truth is – “Use it or you’ll lose it!”
And regarding breathing most of us spend our lives shallow breathing and not engaging the diaphragm anywhere near fully.
But you can increase lung capacity and two major long-term general health studies found that increased lung capacity was the one metric you could correlate with longevity.
Moderate exercise, walking or cycling, can boost lung size by 15%.
The upper part of our lungs are connected to our sympathetic nervous system, the fight or flight mechanisms. When we are stressed we tend to breathe from the upper part of the lungs and breathe more rapidly. Good when you need to quickly run away.
The lower part of the lungs are connected to the parasympathetic nervous system and the parasympathetic system is all about slowing down, nodding off, relaxing, meditating, chilling out – rest and digest, feed and breed.
In the next breathing blog we’ll cover some of the simple breathing exercises we can do during the day to connect with the parasympathetic chilled out nervous system – and increase lung capacity.