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Inspired by yoga, hypnotherapy and meditation, developing Dodow immersed us into a deep study of alternative methods for fixing health problems; sleeping was just a first step.

We would like to share with you our studies, and help you discover health and well-being advice, that are easy to put into practice.

Dealing with stress with cardiac coherence

In your old age, it would be vexing to be congratulated on your great “coherence”. Chill out ! Cardiac coherence has nothing to do with your mental state – actually, it’s very good for your body and it can help you sleep better, even during pregnancy insomnia.

This little exercise’s virtues have been applauded for the last ten years. First, it doesn’t cost a thing : if your body has a working lung, a heart and brain, you’re set. Secondly, the benefits are legendary – they last from 4 to 6 hours after the exercise and are among the tips to fall asleep faster.

It influences your sympathetic nervous system, and switches your body from its resting state to its alert state.

Resting state (rest and digest)

It’s the state you’re in after lunch or before falling asleep: not very productive, not very reactive, thoughtless and rather slow.

Alert state (fight or flight)

This is the state you’re in during strenuous activity, a stressful event, a hard day, when you have anxious thoughts like fear of being unable to fall asleep, or even a strange noise, etc.

Cardiac coherence is the equilibrium between these two states. Heart rate variability (the regularity of your heartbeats) is a stress indicator. By doing this exercise, you regulate your heartbeats which allows you to leave the alert state and leave stress behind you. 

A painkiller

If your child’s sleep is troubled in the womb (most likely meaning that you too suffer from trouble falling asleep) or f you have chronic pain that prevents you from sleeping right, you might not have the means (or the desire) to pop some pills in your quest to cure your sleep troubles. In reality, your body produces enough drugs on its own as it is – all you need to do is ask your body in a language it understands.

How does it work? By controlling your breathing, you slow your heartbeats and initiate your sympathetic nervous system, the part of your nervous system that calms you down.

Your cortisol rate (cortisol is your stress hormone) lowers as soon as you start the exercise and brings you slowly to a resting state.

A source of relaxation

In your resting state, your body concentrates its efforts on digesting, and spends less energy making you feel pain. Thanks to this technique, no need to desperately change positions in bed trying to fall asleep all night – your ills can sometimes even be ignored entirely.

In the mood for love

Sex encourages the production of lots of great hormones (oxytocin, dopamine…) that put you in a good mood and make you want to spend time with people you love.

Satiates hunger

Let’s admit you’ve found your soulmate. You don’t even need a diet: sleeping better to slim down faster thanks to cardiac coherence is totally a thing! Cortisol is also a hormone that increases sugar storage, which explains why stressed out people can suddenly put on pounds.

First, if you have the opportunity, it’s preferable to do this exercise lying down or without crossing any of your limbs.

Close your eyes and relax: if there’s noise around you, don’t panic, let the sounds come and go without a care in the world.

Breath in for five seconds…

Then breath out for five seconds…

Then start over. S-l-o-w-l-y.

Take 6 breaths per minute for 5 minutes. If all goes well, you should be on your way to dreamland by now…

To help you out, team Dodow has made a video to help you get the rhythm going. You can do the exercise sitting, feet on the ground, every morning when you wake up, at work before lunch, and at night to fall asleep.

Cardiac coherence is also called the 365 breathing method as a mnemonics technique: 3 times a day, 6 breaths per minute for 5 minutes. This method was invented by doctor David O’Hare, a general practitioner in the south of France, who has worked jointly with doctor David Servan-Schreiber, a doctor and psychiatric professor known for his books against cancer.

There you go, that’s the trick ! You look really coherent today, don’tcha think? :D

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