Joe Rogan talks Nose Breathing with James Nestor

“It’s all about the breath.”

Joe Rogan

“If you’re not breathing right, you’re never really going to be healthy.” 

James Nestor

Ep. #1506 of the Joe Rogan Experience is all about nose breathing, and why you should be doing it.

In this episode, Joe Rogan interviews James Nestor, a journalist who’s written for Outside Magazine, The New York Times, NPR, The Atlantic, and others. He’s the author of the new book Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art, which we’ve bumped to the very top of our summer reading list. The podcast covers everything from the importance of carbon dioxide, to game-changing breathing techniques for exercise, to the evolutionary effect industrialization has had on our bodies, ultimately narrowing our mouths and airways.

You can listen to the episode here, and check out a few of our favorite facts and highlights below–

  • Nasal breathing is the most efficient way of breathing, giving us leverage over systems in our body we can’t otherwise access. It can help relieve asthma, anxiety, and regulate blood pressure and circulation, just to name a few. 
  • The physical benefits of nose breathing are similar to training at altitude: you boost your red blood cell count and VO2 max.
  • Breathing through your nose slows the rate at which you breathe, but increases the oxygen your body receives by 20% than if you were to breathe more rapidly through your mouth. 
  • It’s a myth that the more we breathe, the more air we get. In reality, many of us breathe too much. 75% of the oxygen we breathe in, we breathe back out.
  • Practice your breathing the same way you would practice any skill. The less you use your nose to breathe, the harder it becomes to do so–if you don’t breathe through your nose, the tissues will tighten and close up.
  • 25-50% of the population currently breathes habitually through their mouth, but doing so can contribute to both neurological and respiratory problems, metabolic disorders, and issues like snoring and sleep apnea.
  • Breath work practice dates back at least 4,000 years to Northern India, though breathing is often overlooked in modern health practices.

And this barely scratches the surface of what James Nestor and Joe Rogan discuss—their conversation is so thorough you’ll want to take notes. It’s safe to say we’ll have this episode on repeat for a while. Check it out here!