For eras, moms have urged youngsters to take long, easy breaths to battle nervousness. A long custom of reflection in like manner uses controlled breathing to actuate serenity.
Today researchers at Stanford University may have revealed surprisingly why taking full breaths can be so quieting. The exploration, on a small collection of neurons deep inside the brains of mice, additionally underscores exactly how complicated and unavoidable the connections are inside our body between breathing, thinking, acting and feeling.
Breathing is one of the body’s most important and elastic processes. Our breaths occur rhythmically and constantly, much like the steady beating of our hearts. But while we (for the most part) cannot change our hearts’ rhythm by choice, we can alter how we breathe, in some cases consciously, as in holding our breath, or with little volition, such as sighing, gasping or yawning.
However, how the mind and body control breathing and vice versa at the cell level has remained to a great extent baffling. Over 25 years prior, scientists at the University of California at Los Angeles initially found a little heap of around 3,000 interlinked neurons inside the brainstems of creatures, including individuals, that appear to control most parts of relaxing. They named these neurons the breathing pacemaker.