What is Buteyko Breathing?

Named after Dr Konstantin Buteyko, the Buteyko Method consists of a series of breathing exercises and guidelines specifically designed to reduce over-breathing (clinically known as ‘chronic hyperventilation’).

The simple fact is that many people breathe too much, which alters the natural levels of gases in the blood, reduces oxygen delivery to tissues and organs, and causes constriction of the smooth muscles surrounding blood vessels and airways. 

 

This can lead to numerous health problems such as:

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Asthma

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Panic Attacks

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Anxiety & Stress

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Slee​p Apnea & Sleep Disorders

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Eczema & Skin Disorders

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Weight Gain & High Blood Pressure​

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Medical Journal Australia – Controlled Buteyko Trial

At 3 months; Buteyko Group achieved

Reliever medication decreased by 90%

Inhaled Corticosteroids decreased by 49%

Dr. Buteyko saw that sick people breathe hard. He asked, is the sickness causing the hard breathing, or the hard breathing causing the sickness? People are often told to take deep, full, big breaths in the belief that this will increase oxygen delivery to the tissues. If we look at the science, it doesn’t work that way. If you take big breaths that increase the volume of air beyond what it should be, you get rid of too much carbon dioxide. Due to the Bohr Effect (first described by the Danish biochemist Christian Bohr in 1904) this causes red blood cells to actually hold on to oxygen instead of releasing it.

 

By practicing the Buteyko breathing technique and developing subtle, soft, slow, light breathing while also maintaining diaphragmatic, nasal breathing, you’re increasing oxygen delivery to the cells. This is where it’s going to transform health.”

There are two major components of
Buteyko Breathing

Reduced Breathing

People who suffer from chronic hyperventilation breathe too much. It’s common for suffers to breathe up to three times the volume that’s required. It’s vital for health that these breathing volumes are brought back to normal levels. Reduced breathing trains the body to naturally breathe the correct volumes of air which alleviates these health conditions.

Nose   Breathing

The human body is designed for beathing through the nose, not the mouth. Mouth breathing is the major reason for over-breathing as people naturally breathe higher volumes of air while mouth breathing. Nose breathing naturally allows the person to breathe the correct volumes of air and adds the benefit for cleaning the air, warming the air to the bodies temperature and transporting nitric oxide from the nasal cavity into the lungs and blood stream.

Why is Reduced Breathing and Nose Breathing Important?

It naturally allows the correct levels of nitrogen, oxygen, argon and carbon dioxide to enter and leave the lungs. This then allows the correct levels to enter the bloodstream which then delivers the correct levels of oxygen to tissues and organs, alleviating the constriction of the smooth muscles surrounding blood vessels and airways.

Carbon Dioxide (CO2)

Carbon Dioxide plays a major part in our body’s health and the flow of oxygenated blood to the oxygen-hungry tissues. CO2 is vital to life, and it must be maintained at the correct levels within our bodies to maintain good health. If the CO2 levels drop below 35mmHG or around 3.8%, then our bodies have no choice but to fight this and our bodies fight this by constricting our airways to reduce the volumes of CO2 being exhaled. Simply, it places our body into an asthma attack.

 

Carbon dioxide diffuses across the cell membrane into the blood vessels. The increase in carbon dioxide saturation of the blood acts as a vasodilator (relaxing the smooth muscle in the blood vessels) ensuring the free flow of oxygenated blood to the oxygen-hungry tissues. If we over-breathe, it reduces the amount of oxygenated blood getting to the oxygen-hungry tissues which defeats the purpose of trying to breathe more.

The Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Basics

In Short – The more we breathe to help our body, the worse we make it.

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