There’s a nerve, called the vagus nerve, that goes directly from our brain to our chest to our stomach, and connects our brain back and forth to our heart and our gut, and even our immune system. The vagus nerve is like the hardwiring that allows our brain to turn down inflammation within our body. When you hear about the mind-body connection—that’s what the vagus nerve is, and does.

Slow-paced breathing can result in a vagal nerve activation, which may have a variety of beneficial effects.