Breathing For Immunity
Breathing is powerful. But you already knew that, right? Of course, you did, silly! That’s why you’re here.
Now, we don’t purport to be breathing experts here at Dryft Sleep. Consider us more like your Sleep Concierge. Your butler to better sleep, if you will. Like the aesthetician, you go to when you need a glow, or the trainer you visit when you want to add that extra “oomph” to your routine. A little restful sleep can go a long way, right?
Today we want to talk about how to strengthen your immune system through breathing. Beyond simply breathing through your nose by wearing Dryft Beauty-Sleep Strips when you sleep, we’re going to dive into how to become a better nose breather and the incredible benefits of nasal breathing, day or night.
How and when to nose breathe:
Research suggests that breathing through your nose 80% of the time has beneficial properties for your body, like more restful sleep at night, less “brain fog” in the morning and reduced nasal congestion throughout the day.
How to strengthen your lungs:
Breathwork is an easy way to start strengthening your lungs and it doesn’t take any special equipment. You can even practice right now while you read this!
We’re big fans of Dr. Andrew Weil, M.D.’s “4-7-8 Breath” technique. This is a conscious breathwork technique that will put you in a relaxed state immediately. Dr. Weil’s instructions are simple:
- Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound.
- Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four.
- Hold your breath for a count of seven.
- Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of eight. This is one breath.
- Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of four breaths.*
Try this technique once a day for immune-boosting benefits that will build over time. We like practicing one round of breathwork before bed each night to simmer down from our day and prepare ourselves for a restful night.
Exercise is another way to strengthen your lungs and get your body feeling good, no matter how much sleep you got the night before. Because we bet you’ve never regretted the workout you didn’t want to go to but did anyway, right? It’s like you’ve conquered the world when you finish that workout!
And your exercise doesn’t need to be intense. Research has shown that any kind of regular exercise can increase the strength and function of your muscles - and that applies to your lungs.
Hydration is another key element for strengthening your lungs and improving overall immunity. Drinking water helps keep your body at a normal temperature, helps lubricate and cushion your joints, and assists your body in getting rid of waste through urination, perspirations and bowel movements. Yeah, we went there, but it’s like life, right?! (the CDC did too, so…)
A hydrated is not as stressed and can help you sleep better at night and have a sunnier morning. Try to keep your hydration focused on water (flavored with something non-sugar-based if you need to) and drink consistently throughout the day.
A big no-no for a good night’s rest? Chugging your ounces right before bed. You want to sleep all night, not get up to pee! Try to spread out your water consumption throughout the day to help your body process water intake in a natural rhythm.
So, you’re drinking water, you’re exercising, and doing your breathwork. Girl, you are B-U-S-Y!
When you practice all of these simple techniques in moderation and over an extended period of time, your body can start empowering itself to function more thoughtfully. That might mean you get sick less often. Or maybe you lose some weight (you go, girl!). Perhaps your sleep starts to improve (plus you have those Beauty-Sleep Strips!) or you wake up a little less groggy over time.
Improved immunity comes in so many different forms but the crux of what you want to achieve is an improvement in your overall wellbeing. Whatever that looks like for you, we hope you find it and we’re here to cheer you on for every step of your wellness journey.*List excerpted from DrWeil.com