How to Boost Your Immune System Using Only Your Breath

Welcome to Well+Good’s (Re)New Year—a five-week expert-led program that’s all about helping you have your best year yet. For Week Five, we’re excited to have Gabrielle Bernstein, the ‎self-help phenom (not to mention best-selling author and member of our Wellness Council). Throughout the week, she’ll be sharing her tips for how to channel the self love and confidence you’ve been working on throughout the program—so that you can be your most grounded and powerful self all year long.

I hope this title got your attention because this is one of my favorite things to teach people.

Especially during winter, people spend so much time and energy on avoiding getting sick. Whether it's through powders or teas, exercise, or piling on the layers, there are many theories on keeping the common cold at bay (some of which work better than others).

This technique is a powerful Kundalini meditation tool that will provide you with a strong and powerful immune system to keep you healthy all year.

And all you have to do is channel your favorite pup.

That's right, the technique is all about breathing like a dog. Once you nail the moves, it will strengthen your entire body, mind, and spirit. Practice this meditation every day, or when you feel your constitution weakening—it can bring energy to help fight off disease, infection, and negative thoughts. 

Scroll down to check out the mind and body technique—and show me your best (Re)New Year "dog breathing" on Instagram with #iamwellandgood.

Photo: Stocksy/Bonninstudio

How to do "dog breath"

This is probably more powerful than you think. When you feel a tingling in your toes, thighs, and lower back, it’s a sure sign that it's working.

1. Sit in an easy pose with your chin and your chest pressed out. Stick out your tongue all the way and breathe rapidly through your mouth, keeping your tongue out the entire time. Practice this breath for three to five minutes.

2. To finish the meditation, inhale and hold your breath for 15 seconds as you press your tongue hard against your upper palate. Repeat this two more times.

The (Re)New Year series is not a “New Year, New You” program. (We think you’re pretty great as is!) Instead, we tapped the biggest and best influencers across the wellness space to help kick off the New Year in the best possible way. Between heart-racing workouts, DIY beauty recipes, and killer confidence advice, get ready to have your happiest and healthiest year yet.

This post was originally published on January 31, 2017; updated on August 7, 2020.

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