Why nose breathing is essential for your health
Why you should breath through your nose
The mouth is there for talking, eating and kissing. Physiological it is the nose’s job to provide you with oxygen. It prepares the air for optimal oxygen absorption. It is connected to the diaphragm and an inhale through the nose has hence the potential for more volume.
The nose conditions the breath by humidifying, pressurizing, warming and filtering the air before it reaches your lungs. Protecting you from polluted air and helping your lungs to take in as much oxygen as possible to keep you not only alive but also energized.
Further it has a calming effect. Maybe you noticed that when you are stressed or in a hurry your breath gets fast and shallow and when you are relaxed it slows down and is longer. As the mind impacts the breath so does the breath the mind.
Take a deep breath in through your nose and now through your mouth. Which one took longer? Breathing through your nose will help you to slow down the breath and relax your mind which will reduce chronic stress levels and ultimately benefit your sleep too.
So next time you notice you breathe through your mouth, close it and switch to nose breathing instead. It will not only relax you but also your body will take in more usable (as it was conditioned as described earlier) oxygen.
From a yogic perspective you also want to breathe through the nose as two of our energy channels the nadis Ida and Pingala end at the nostrils. They represent the feminine and masculine energy. Doing a pranayama like Nadi Shodhana can help you to balance those two and bring mind and body into a more balanced state.
The yogi also believes that the rate of your breath correlates with your lifespan. The respiration is directly connected to the heart. A slow breathing rate keeps the heart strong and well nourished and hence contributes to a longer life.
So how to breath through your nose more often? First, awareness. Become more aware about your breathing during your daily life. When you caught yourself breathing through the mouth decide to breath through the nose instead. Further breath work as we do it in our yoga classes in Copenhagen like Ujjayi breathing can help you to condition this subconscious task of your body. Stay calm and breathe through your nose.