Breathing is, in part, the process by which Air is inserted into the lungs to facilitate blood oxygenation and obtain energy. Air inhalation describes a physiological process. We breathe Air with its gas components.
Oxygen is separated and diffuses from the lungs into the blood, through the heart, and into the blood stream to arrive to all the body’s cells. In contrast, air exhalation describes how carbon dioxide waste diffuses from the blood into the lungs and out of the body.
Breathing carries additional meanings to the way we live, exist, move and make our way in life, and has a diverse and colorful influence on physiological, medical, spiritual and mental aspects.
Breathing symbolizes balance, repression, containment and patience.
In integrative medicine, breathing plays a significant role in general health and quality of life. The way we breathe determines the body’s chemistry and function. Dysfunctional breathing patterns influence emotion, circulation, digestive function, and respiration.
Several exercises and techniques were found beneficial for improving the quality of breathing, from training and practicing arts like yoga, Qi-gong or meditation, through medicinal herbs and mushrooms, to concentrated herbal tinctures or decoctions.
Unlike plants, who received their food through the photosynthesis process, mushrooms, under being an organism and not a plant, need food, water, and oxygen to survive and sustain their life cycle, making them remarkably close to us humans.
Some mushrooms have been researched and found to affect breathing in various aspects, but the most familiar and intriguing is the Cordyceps.