Pranayama: The Key to Healthy Living

Pranayama has been an exercise that is quintessential for good concentration powers and recent researches suggest many more advantages. Pranayama basically increases the oxygen supply to blood as a result of long inhaling breaths. This helps in maintaining our body’s natural rhythm. Philosophically this leads to a concept called cosmic rhythm inside our body and helps garner positive influences. But since pranayama influences major functions of the central nervous system, its medical values are conspicuous. Memory is said to get better by regularly practicing pranayama. This is because it increases the alertness and decreases the visual and auditory reaction times of a person. Hence pranayama is a common cure to many psycho physiological disorders. Researches suggest that psychiatric disorders ameliorate with regular pranayama as it is more invigorating and reduces sympathetic activity.

As pranayama increases renal and cerebral blood flow, pranayama has been employed for various cardio-vascular problems. The flow of oxygen into the body is best efficient when there is a high volume and slow rate of the inflow. Asthma patients who take ventilator treatments are usually advised to compliment the treatment with pranayama for better results. Obesity, Diabetes, Rheumatism, Gastric troubles, Blood pressure, Migraine and Nervous disorders are said to be healed through regular pranayama. The medical effects are too many to list down. In general, pranayama regulates the flow of oxygen in blood and purifies the blood. For a healthy body and mind, Pranayama has been proved to be the most optimal and simplest solution.

The very practice of pranayama is a gift to all Indians from our traditional science and culture. With yoga and meditation gaining popularity the world over, pranayama is becoming the buzzword in health conscious societies. Westerners have started investigating the effects of such traditional Indian methods. Pranayama affects to major activities of the brain viz. alpha activity(Increased alertness) and beta activity (Relaxed state of mind). As a result, it has been scientifically proved that it is a successful medical cure to a score of medical complaints that are common today.Though this fact has been claimed by yogis already, the vindication by scientists has increased the awareness like never before. There is a world of difference in the functioning of lungs and lung activity between people who practice pranayama and people who don’t. It is a great practice to devote 10-15 minutes in a day, ideally in the morning for pranayama and yoga. For a disease-free lifestyle, pranayama is the shortcut and each one of us should understand the importance of this ‘art of breathing’.

Pradeep Sekhar

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