Deep Breathing Might Have Benefits We’re Only Beginning to Understand

Yoga Lifestyle with Cristina

One researcher’s push to understand how an ancient yoga technique can change our cells.

By Sara Novak|Tuesday, March 12, 2019

As a cell biologist, Sundar Balasubramanian never forgot his rural southern Indian roots, or the traditional practices his uncle, the village healer, exposed him to. Today, as a researcher and assistant professor at the Medical University of South Carolina, Balasubramanian has turned his focus back to those roots — specifically, to pranayama, a deep-breathing relaxation technique. He’s showing that this ancient yoga practice is about more than relaxing — it can change us at the cellular level.

Q: What made you examine this technique through a cellular biology lens?

A: In 2005, I noticed while I was practicing pranayama, I was producing so much saliva that I was almost drooling. I wondered why and what the overall impact of that was. This led me and my team to study…

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