Tone the Vagus Nerve
Toning up your vagus nerve can have significant mental health benefits. The vagus nerve is linked to your parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS) which is your rest and digest system, so it’s relaxes the body, inhibiting slow or high energy functions. The vagus nerve is the longest cranial nerve in the body and extends it’s reach from the back of your neck all the way down your body and connects your brain with the heart, lung and gut. ‘Toning’ represents the activity of your vagus nerve. The more active means that your body can relax faster after stress such as coping with anxiety, stress or anger. Stimulating the vagus nerve and increasing vagal tone has been shown to help treat a wide variety of brain and mental health conditions, including depression, anxiety disorders, migraines, fibromyalgia, poor memory, anger, trauma, severe mental diseases and chronc fatigue syndrome to name a few.
Here are some tips on how to one your vagus nerve:
- Cold Exposure – exposing yourself to cold daily such as taking a cold shower every day.
- Diaphragmatic breathing – learning to breathe using your diaphragm is another simple and highly effective way to reduce anxiety and tone the vagus nerve.
- OM’s – The vagus nerve is linked to your vocal cords so practising your Oms daily will benefit your spiritual self and tone your vagus nerve too.
- Gut Health – Research can now demonstrate that improved gut health equals improved brain functioning. A good probiotic will promote a healthy digestive tract and a healthy immune systems.
- Meditation – the practice of meditation can reduce the stress response activity in our bodies and increases toning of the vagus nerve.
Exercise – Exercise. It’s a given that any form of regular exercise will have significant mental and physical benefits. The fact that it also helps tone the vagus nerve is now another bonus. So starting walking, running or lifting weights to feel the benefits.