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Sam Wynne

"Breath" by James Nestor

January 25, 2023

Sam Wynne

Sam Wynne

Sam Wynne is a tech consultant with a background in restaurant and brewery ownership.

Breath is a book about the most important thing we do wrong every day.

Book Reviews
Health & Fitness

“The nose is the silent warrior: the gatekeeper of our bodies, pharmacist to our minds, and weather vane to our emotions.”
― James Nestor, Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art

I recently read "Breath" by James Nestor and found it to be an incredibly fascinating and informative book. Nestor explores the science of breathing and its connection to our overall health and wellbeing in a way that is both engaging and easy to understand. Through his extensive research and interviews with experts in the field, Nestor offers valuable insights into the ways in which our modern lifestyles and habits are negatively impacting our breathing and how we can improve our breath to improve our overall health and wellbeing.

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One of the things I appreciated most about this book was Nestor's ability to take complex scientific concepts and explain them in a way that is accessible to readers with no scientific background. He writes in a conversational style that makes the book a pleasure to read, and the stories and examples he includes from his own experiences and those of others make the information even more relatable.

“In a single breath, more molecules of air will pass through your nose than all the grains of sand on all the world’s beaches—trillions and trillions of them. These little bits of air come from a few feet or several yards away. As they make their way toward you, they’ll twist and spool like the stars in a van Gogh sky, and they’ll keep twisting and spooling and scrolling as they pass into you, traveling at a clip of about five miles per hour.”
― James Nestor

In addition to the science behind breathing, Nestor also delves into the history of breathing and the cultural and societal factors that have influenced our relationship with breath. He discusses the ancient practices of breath control and the ways in which these practices have been lost or distorted in modern times. This historical perspective provides a unique and valuable perspective on the current state of our breathing habits.

“This is what I learned at the end of this long and very strange trip through the causes and cures of airway obstruction. That our noses and mouths are not predetermined at birth, childhood, or even in adulthood. We can reverse the clock on much of the damage that’s been done in the past few hundred years by force of will, with nothing more than proper posture, hard chewing, and perhaps some mewing. And with the obstruction out of the way, we can finally get back to breathing.”
― James Nestor

Overall, I highly recommend "Breath" to anyone who is interested in improving their health and wellbeing. Nestor's engaging writing and extensive research make this book a must-read for anyone looking to learn more about the power of breath.