Shocking truth why “mouth” breathing could be slowly killing you ?

The latest BBC coverage of the Wim Hof “freeze the fear” series has seen a huge interest in his methods to reverse disease. More and more people are beginning to understand that simple breathing techniques can reverse a huge range of auto immune problems. These include things like Lupus, Colitis, IBS, sleep problems, arthritis, depression /anxiety, general pain and inflammation issues. 

Wim Hof has left the medical community scratching their heads and beginning to wonder why simple breathing techniques can do more to reverse disease than the huge pile of drugs (with significant side effects) have to offer. 

Most people take a glass of water to bed as their mouth gets dry in the night….WHY?

Because most people while asleep tend to breathe with their mouth open (even if during the day they consciously breathe in through the nose).  This leads to disturbed sleep thanks to snoring and other issues. Poor levels of nitric oxide absorption (only generated with nose breathing) can lead to a common condition of sleep apnea where breathing can actually stop during the night. This will wake you spontaneously to suddenly breathe in to survive. This mouth breathing problem can be cured with a simple sleep “lip” tape when retiring to bed. This will allow you to breathe through the nose, and after a few days it will become automatic as you re train your subconscious to naturally revert to how we should be breathing.  

As we have learnt over the past articles and my own experience, while trauma care is brilliant within the general health care system, disease management to ease symptoms of disease not only fail to target the root cause of problems you may be experiencing, but also are likely to cause unwanted side effects.  These side effects may also compound the problem of general decline in health, strength and happiness.

In May last year James Nestor published his best selling  book “The new science of a lost art”. He spent years researching clinical trials and evidence from a wide range of breathing specialists (including Wim Hof) to come to the overwhelming conclusion that most people are breathing incorrectly. 

He looked at a vast range of breathing techniques that are scientifically proven to reverse a wide range of medical conditions and found that many of these diseases at their core were the result of most people breathing with their mouth and not their nose. 

This is not just anecdotal evidence either. Since Wim Hof achieved his 26 Guinness world records, the research scientific community woke up to the idea that perhaps after all we do not know enough about how and why he was able to achieve these incredible feats of endurance. Over the last 20 years, thousands of scientific papers have been published on the subject and these have all been thoroughly analyzed in James Nestors book.

For instance we now also understand that the lymphatic system responsible for clearing out toxicity in the body works very much better with proper breathing techniques. This was why when Wim Hof was injected along with 12 volunteers with an endotoxin (ecoli) none of them became ill thanks to the breathing techniques while all the other participants got very sick. 

We also now understand the importance of helping the blood to become more alkaline through proper breathing techniques. This helps generate more mitochondrial activity giving more strength and energy, while also boosting immune function 

Perhaps one of the most important benefits is the switch engaging the sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight mode) to the para-sympathetic nervous system (rest and repair mode). This reduces cortisol levels which are present during fight or flight states limiting immune function and the ability for the body to reduce inflammation, the pre cursor to disease. 

The breath hold (where air hunger takes place) is also shown to increase red blood cell growth. Breath-holding increases the production of EPO—a naturally occurring hormone produced in the kidneys that stimulate the bone marrow to release more red blood cells, leading to better aerobic performance and energy levels.

Scientific researchers hypothesize the Wim Hof Method can promote the spontaneous release of opioids and cannabinoids in the brain. This is why the technique has the effect of creating a feeling of well-being, mood control, reduced anxiety and reverse depression.

Once we start to breathe with our nose, then true progress can begin by the use of a variety of breathing techniques to control blood pressure, heart problems, asthma, circulation, energy issues and many other health problems. 

The only animal that ever switches from nose to mouth breathing is a dog. Dogs will use the mouth breathing to rapidly cool down. All other animals including humans are designed to use the nose. The main reason for this is to filter the air. It also humidifies purifies and filters the air before it is allowed to enter our body. This is done with Nitric oxide only generated in the nose and vital for our Para-sympathetic nervous system which is the relaxed state. Mouth breathing engages the sympathetic system which is the fight or flight response and tells the body we are stressed. 

Once we engage our fight or flight sympathetic nervous system our immune system all but shuts down. This explains why so many people suffer from auto immune disease.

With countless numbers of different breathing techniques developed over many thousands of years, which one is best? The reality is that once we start to breathe at rest correctly and efficiently (by slowing our breath to around 6-8 breaths per minute) we will start to improve nearly every physiological function.  

“When we breathe consciously, we stimulate also the vagus nerve.  This brings the heart rate back to normal, bringing the blood pressure back to normal, which in turn relaxes the nerves, helping anxiety. So deep breathing exercises can also be used to regulate blood pressure. 

After doing these breathing exercises for several months, I have gone from thinking it was all a “fad”,  to understanding not only why it works so well for a huge range of inflammatory conditions like arthritis, colitis, crohn´s, bursitis and asthma but also why anxiety and depression can be targeted too. Experts are now seeing cancer linked to inflammatory conditions, so the sooner we start to pay closer attention to the way we breathe, the sooner we can begin to reap the rewards of a healthier stronger more energetic and pain free existence.  This all inevitably leads to better flexibility and movement as we go deeper into our retirement. 

For those of you that have read this far and have seen the series on BBC with Wim Hof then why not just try the breathing technique for a few days and see how you feel?

For an easy entry into the principal of Wim Hof breathing go to this link

For a more detailed explanation of how different breathing techniques can reverse a wide range of diseases then go to this link with James Nestor the author of the book “The new science of a lost art”

Readers of theChronicle can still get my eBook for free which covers breathing techniques as well as a wide range of dietary and lifestyle changes to help reverse pain disease and general inflammation naturally without the use of medication and pain killers. Just email me.