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Old 04-22-2009, 06:01 PM   #1
Spencer Durland
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Default Buteyko breathing

In an earlier thread there was some discussion of Buteyko breathing as a treatment for asthma, but since being introduced to Buteyko by my Dad who attended a seminar, I have found nasal breathing very helpful during workouts.

In brief, the idea is that we exhale too much carbon-dioxide when breathing through the mouth during exercise, thus upsetting the blood-chemistry such that less oxygen is transferred to muscles than would be the case if breathing through the nose.

I was skeptical when I first heard about this, but testing it out changed my mind. When I tried breathing only through my nose during the points in a WOD where I had to take a short rest, I found that I could get back at it faster and stronger than when I breathed through my mouth.

Has anyone else tried this? If so, how did it work for you?
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Old 04-27-2009, 07:55 PM   #2
Andrew Wilson
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Interesting, any links/articles?
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Old 04-27-2009, 08:40 PM   #3
George Mounce
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The studies have shown no significant difference is what I gathered from this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buteyko_method

Quote:
Bowler et al, Medical Journal of Australia, 1998

In 1995 a randomized double blind placebo controlled study on the technique was run in Brisbane, Australia.[5] People in the test were taught either the Buteyko method or a placebo breathing method involving standard physiotherapy relaxation and breathing, and changes in behavior noted. The results of the test showed no improvement in lung function, such as forced expiratory volume in one second or peak flow, in either the Buteyko method group or the placebo group. There was no significant difference between normal breathers and either group at any time, however there was a significant reduction in mean minute volume in the Buteyko group (relative to the placebo group). There was no significant increase in actual CO2.

However, the study detected significant changes in drug use, with the Buteyko group showing a decrease in steroid inhaler use of 49%. To quote the summary of the trial: "Those practising [the Buteyko technique] reduced hyperventilation and their use of beta2-agonists. A trend toward reduced inhaled steroid use and better quality of life was observed in these patients without objective changes in measures of airway calibre." "Quality of life" was measured by a self-administered questionnaire that asked patients about breathing, mood, social interaction and concerns for the future. As the questonnaire relied on subjective information and was not carried out by an independent source, it is possible that it was merely people's perceptions of their own health that was changed.

From the data given the reduction in beta2-agonists (e.g. Ventolin) was 96% and the reduction in steroid inhalers was 49%.

The results were also clouded because it was later learned that the Buteyko group was being telephoned by the Buteyko teacher during the trial. This was unknown to the people carrying out the trial and though it was claimed to be a normal part of the Buteyko process it was not disclosed as such. This leaves open the possibility that people were talked into having their perceptions of their illness changed, which would explain why the Buteyko group showed a change in their drug usage and in their own descriptions of their quality of life, but no changes in physically measurable areas such as airway or lung function. There has been no repeat of the trial to measure the possible influence from outside sources.

Other interesting findings from the Brisbane trial were:

1. Neither the Buteyko nor the placebo group experienced a change in carbon dioxide levels after the treatment, but average minute volume for the Buteyko group was significantly lower than for the placebo group, and reduced beta2-agonist use was related to reduction in minute volume.
2. Neither group experienced a difference in airway function, despite significant medication reduction in the Buteyko group.
3. There was no significant change in the quality of life at any stage of the treatment, though there was a slight trend towards the Buteyko group measuring theirs as better in the long term. The changes in life quality were evenly spread across all areas that were measured.
4. There was no significant difference in tidal volume at the end of the trial
5. Those who used the Buteyko method used beta2-agonist inhalers less often.

The trial shows that the Buteyko method reduces drug usage without exacerbating the disease and without deterioration in lung function.

The report states "BBT might also have altered subjects' perceptions of asthma severity without affecting the underlying disease. This could account for the reduction in medication use and trends toward improvements in quality of life and is consistent with the absence of any change in objective measures of airway calibre. On the other hand, the reduction in medication use in the BBT group did not lead to a decline in lung function, and rates of oral steroid use and hospital admission were similar in each group."

In 2000 another trial took place in New Zealand, the aim of which was to measure safety and effectiveness, rather than why Buteyko works.[7] It recorded no change in forced expiratory volume. However, there was an 85% reduction in beta2-agonists and a 50% reduction in steroid use amongst people who had used the Buteyko method for six months. Participants were paired on the basis of severity of asthma. They were then randomised to either Buteyko or control group using a computer-generated list. All participants received a telephone call from their tutor one week after the final teaching session and were instructed to contact their tutor if necessary from this point on. Three contacts were made, two from Buteyko participants and one from the control group. The matched participant was contacted in each case. The term "Buteyko" was allowed in the trial, because it was considered that use of the term would not unduly bias results, and was preferable to unrealistic efforts to maintain complete blinding. The trial recorded no adverse effects from the use of Buteyko. Even though no study has indicated exactly why Buteyko is so effective at controlling asthma, if a drug could show these results, then it is likely that it would be used widely in asthma control.
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Old 04-28-2009, 07:43 AM   #4
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George,
You don't see any significant difference from what you posted there?

Perceived improvement in quality of life, massive reductions in medication required? Such "non-results" that...
Quote:
...if a drug could show these results, then it is likely that it would be used widely in asthma control.
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Old 04-28-2009, 03:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garrett Smith View Post
George,
You don't see any significant difference from what you posted there?

Perceived improvement in quality of life, massive reductions in medication required? Such "non-results" that...
Perceived doesn't mean improved. You can make people think they need medication as much as make them think they don't. People perceive that Dasani drinking water is good for them every day, but it is in fact just reverse osmosis filtered Detroit tap water.

People can breathe through their nose all they want, and since links were wanted, I posted one. The problem I find is that nose breathing isn't new, putting a name on it is ridiculous as if it is some new technique. I'm sorry, they were doing this in India and China in Buddhist temples thousands of years ago. Sorry to burst the bubble, but this isn't something special.
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Old 04-28-2009, 04:53 PM   #6
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Some people need things repackaged. If they need to think it is new and different (as you know, hardly anything is) for it to work in their heads, I'm all for whatever works.
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Old 04-29-2009, 03:13 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garrett Smith View Post
Some people need things repackaged. If they need to think it is new and different (as you know, hardly anything is) for it to work in their heads, I'm all for whatever works.
Yes, don't get me wrong, if something improves someones life perceptually I'm all for it.
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