The way we breathe may affect how well
our memories are consolidated (i.e. reinforced and stabilised). If we breathe
through the nose rather than the mouth we remember things better, report
researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden in The Journal of Neuroscience.
"Our study shows that we remember smells better if we breathe through the nose when the memory is being consolidated -- the process that takes place between learning and memory retrieval," says Artin Arshamian, researcher at the Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet. "This is the first time someone has demonstrated this."
"The idea that breathing affects our behaviour is actually not new," says Dr Arshamian. "In fact, the knowledge has been around for thousands of years in such areas as meditation. But no one has managed to prove scientifically what actually goes on in the brain. We now have tools that can reveal new clinical knowledge."