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Has Kiwi discovered missing piece to heart disease?

Has Kiwi researcher discovered missing piece to heart disease and illness?

A researcher into heart health believes he has discovered a major piece of the puzzle to the cause of heart disease and other related health problems. 

According to a world health statistics report released in May 2012, cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the number one cause of death globally and an estimated 17.3 million people died from CVDs in 2008, representing 30% of all global deaths. According to the New Zealand Heart Foundation, 40% of total annual deaths in New Zealand are from CVDs.

French Kiwi Daniel Astinotti, founder of the HeartBreath Institute in New Zealand, has been researching the connection between stress, breathing rhythms and heart health, and has come up with some surprising results. According to Astinotti, the main risk factor for CVDs has been completely overlooked by most doctors: an unconscious and dysfunctional habit of over-breathing.

Whilst most people take the act of breathing for granted, and many doctors might consider 20-25 breaths per minute a healthy breathing rate. Astinotti has discovered otherwise. According to his research, a healthy breathing rate is only 3 to 4 breaths per minute. Whilst most people might balk at this statistic, he believes he has merely re-discovered a vital piece of information regarding health which has simply been forgotten.

Ancient yogis have known about the importance of breath for thousands of years. In Swara Yoga, a yoga practice dedicated to the breathing practice of ‘pranayama’, the life span of a human is measured in the number of breaths rather than years.  

In the 60s, the Soviets developed a research project on breathing as part of their space program in order to keep astronauts healthy. The research was secret until the 1990’s when it was declassified and made available to the public under the name of the ‘Buteyko’ Breathing Method. According to Buteyko’s research, over 90% of modern people unconsciously "practice" hyperventilation: in other words our breath is dysfunctional and we are over-breathing without even knowing it.

Paradoxically, over-breathing (hyperventilation) gives less rather than more oxygen to the body’s cells: over-breathing creates an imbalance between the two most vital elements which keep us alive: Oxygen (O2) and Carbon Dioxide (CO2). 

A lack of CO2 in our lungs and blood will decrease the delivery of blood and the release of O2 into our cells and tissues. This is caused by two little known physiological effects of CO2 deficiency: constriction of blood vessels and inefficient release of O2 (the ‘Bohr ‘effect). Hence chronic hyperventilation eventually has dire consequences on health by slowly asphyxiating the cells of our body.  Keeping a healthy balance between O2 and CO2 in our body is therefore one of the most vital natural laws of human biology and is achieved through normal breathing – if we know what that is.

In the last 20 years, research has clearly shown the intimate connection between the breath and heart health. A scientific breakthrough has been the discovery that the heart is a mini-brain and not just a muscle for pumping blood. Leading this research has been the HeartMath Institute LLC (USA), who have shown through state of the art biofeedback systems that a slow rhythmic breathing pattern of approximately 6 breaths per minute creates a healthy heart rhythm, known as ‘coherent heart rate variation’, which is conducive to stress reduction, better health and wellbeing.

Recent research by Astinotti of the HeartBreath Institute NZ shows the critical importance for our health of rediscovering, understanding and developing this fundamental relationship existing between the breath and the heart. This vital natural law is called ‘CARDIO-PULMONARY RESONANCE’ where bye the heart and the lungs are designed to naturally work in optimal synchrony (a state of resonance). 

According to Astinotti “If we breathe out of sync with our heart, as seems to be the case with 90% of the population who are unconsciously over-breathing, we unwittingly nurture an unhealthy and chronic state of stress, which will slowly but surely lead to most of the debilitating and killing chronic diseases plaguing our modern world, in particular cardiovascular disease”.

Both the HeartBreath Institute and HeartMath LLC will be participating on an upcoming heart and ‘emotional’ intelligence summit this September to showcase their findings. 

Astinotti from HeartBreath will explain how you can use your heart to measure your stress levels and give listeners a hands-on experience of breathing at 3-4 breaths per minute in order to bring the heart into optimal ‘cardio-pulmonary’ coherence. Listeners may be surprised to find it is easier and more pleasant than they think.

HeartMath vice president Howard Martin will also be a keynote speaker on the event, where he will share the HeartMath methods for reducing stress and achieving heart coherence. He will also talk about the ‘Global Coherence’ Initiative, a ground-breaking experiment currently underway to investigate the effects of stress and emotions at a collective level on the earth’s magnetic grid. 

The Global Coherence Monitoring System (GCMS) is a network of sensitive magnetic field detectors strategically placed around the world to test to test the hypothesis the earth is affected by mass human emotion. 14 sensor sites are being strategically placed around the world, with 3 already in place in California, Saudi Arabia and England and 4 more funded and soon to be functioning in Canada, New Zealand, Brazil and South Africa. The sensors are funded entirely by donation. It is the goal of the summit to raise USD $10,000 for the project.

According to HeartMath “This system will enable a new level of scientific inquiry into the relationship between the earth’s magnetic field, collective human emotions and behaviours and planetary changes”. The experiment has been described by Jack Canfield, best-selling author of the ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ Series, as “perhaps the greatest experiment in the history of the world”.

The EQ (Emotional Intelligence) Summit has been organized by New Zealander Kim Knight, a 2011 finalist in the NZ Woman of the Year awards for her innovative approach to health. It will feature 27 world experts in the field of human emotion and presenters will demonstrate through proven methodologies how developing and using EQ is essential for success in all areas of life, such as health, wealth, career, relationships and education. 12 of the 27 presenters are experts in how to identify and resolve the underlying emotional causes of chronic illness.

The online global event will kick off Mon 3 September (US) [day after in New Zealand], with Marvin Oka, co-author with Grant Soosalu of the ground-breaking new book ‘mBraining’ and the ‘mBIT’ multiple brain integration technique, who will share how the latest findings in neuro-science show we have three complex and functional brains and how we can harness and integrate these multiple brains for greater success, wisdom and happiness.

The Summit will run for 2 weeks from 3 September until 18 September. Listeners can tune in from anywhere in the world and there are free listening options, although the goal of the paid option is to raise funds for the Global Coherence Initiative.

For detailed information and registration see http://www.artofhealth.co.nz/s-events-telesummit-emotional-intelligence2012.htm

For details of the Global Coherence Initiative see http://artofhealth.co.nz/s-events-telesummit-emotional-intelligence2012-global-coherence.htm

ENDS

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