Scientists have uncovered an unexpected benefit to the brain if you breathe through the nose, not the mouth
The recognition of odours is a key survival mechanism for most living beings. That’s why neuroscientists believe that the relationship between thinking and breathing was an early evolutionary adaptation.
Recent studies in rodents have shown that when animals breathe, sniffing the air, it triggers activity in the brain, stimulating the neurons in the so-called olfactory bulb, which then sends a signal to the hippocampus part of the brain involved in creating and storing memories.
Researchers from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm conducted an experiment to find out whether the brain the same if breathing through the mouth, according to the publication Neuroscience.
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In the experiment, the researchers asked 20 young men and women breathe in 12 different fragrances. Some smells were familiar, like the scent of orange blossoms, while others were unknown. Each flavor we had to try to remember.
The experiment participants had to go through this process twice. During the first part of the study after inhalation of fragrances they sat quietly for hours with closed noses and breathe only through my mouth. During the second part they were asked to sit for hours with my mouth closed and breathe only a nose.
According to the hypothesis of scientists, during each hour of their brain had to consolidate memories about the smell in the hippocampus. After each hour, the volunteers were given a re-try old scents and added new ones. Then they had to determine whether they inhaled this scent before.
The results showed that all men and women better recognize the odors after they within the hour breathe through the nose. After breathing mouth participants gave a greater number of wrong answers.
According to the Artin Aramana, neurologist at Karolinska Institute and lead author of the study, nasal breathing increases the brain’s ability to remember information. Presumably that mouth breathing was in this sense less efficient, because it does not involve the olfactory bulb, the scientists explain.
Recall that to do with a stuffy nose.
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