Pranayama is the yoga practice of focusing on breathing. Prana in Sanskrit means “life force/energy” and Yama means “control”. The breath is a representation of Prana, and Pranayama is the conscious control of breathing in order to lengthen and expand the vital life force energy. Pranayama is commonly used with physical poses (Asanas) and meditation (Dhyana).
Through simply focusing on breathing, it can give powerful relaxation throughout the body. Regardless of any types of breathing techniques for Pranayama, it always involve 3 phases: inhalation, holding the breath and exhalation. It is a crucial part of yoga, an activity that promotes both physical and emotional wellness. Pranayama has many health advantages of its own due to the result of mindfulness and breathing techniques. Pranayama helps to connect the body and the mind. Many health aspects, like lungs, blood pressures and brain are proven to be improved due to the practice of Pranayama. This article will be studying on the impact on the people with high blood pressure.
High Blood Pressure
A consistently elevated pressure in the blood arteries is known as hypertension or high blood pressure. It is a severe medical disorder that could result into the high chance of kidney, heart, brain, and other organ illnesses. Only 14% of persons with high blood pressure have it under control, affecting an estimated 1.4 billion people worldwide.
Risking trend of high blood pressure in Singapore
From the survey conducted by Singapore National Health Survey1, the prevalence of high blood pressure for the years 2019–2020 was 35.5%, up from 24.2% in 2017, with males experiencing a higher frequency than females (41.0%). (30.2 per cent).
According to the International Journal of Applied and Basic Medical Research2, patients with mild hypertension were split into two groups. The objective of the study is to evaluate the effect of relaxation in the form of Pranayama on Rate Pressure Product (RPP) in mild hypertensives. For six weeks, Group A received antihypertensive medications, whereas Group B also received training in Pranayama.
In Group B where Pranayama was included, blood pressure considerably dropped compared to Group A. RPP is considerably decreased in both groups compared to baseline, but when Pranayama was added to antihypertensive medications, the decline was much greater than when antihypertensive medications alone.
In conclusion, by practicing pranayama, a calm state brought in and parasympathetic activity takes precedence over sympathetic activity. As a result, adding pranayama to antihypertensive medications can help mild hypertensives better control their hypertension.
- 1Key Highlights from the National Population Health Survey 2020.
- 2Effect of pranayama on rate pressure product in mild hypertensives – PMC
- The Effects of Yoga on High Blood Pressure
- Immediate effect of sukha pranayama on cardiovascular variables in patients of hypertension
- Pranayama Benefits for Physical and Emotional Health