Deep breathing exercises can reduce panic attacks and other symptoms of anxiety, since shallow breath contributes to panic. Of all the automatic functions of the body — cardiovascular, digestive, hormonal, glandular, immune — only the breath can be easily controlled voluntarily, explain Richard P. Brown, M.D. and Patricia L. Gerbarg, M.D. in their book, “The Healing Power of the Breath.” The authors discuss several techniques of deep breathing to reduce stress and anxiety, starting off with three basic approaches, which provide the building blocks for the others. The history of breath moving dates back to monks around the eleventh century, who taught breath control to warriors to help protect and empower them.
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