Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art by James Nester

Reviewed by Max

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Breathing is the body's most basic biological function and yet, as a species, humans have lost the ability to breathe correctly. No matter how much you eat, exercise, weigh, or know, none of it matters if you're not breathing properly. In Breath, Nestor highlights the science, history, and practice of breathing through a narrative non-fiction verse that is equal parts accessible and enjoyable, turning the current knowledge of what we think we know about breathing upside down.

The book itself is divided into 3 parts: one highlighting the current and past research on breath, another on the history and cultural understandings of breath, and a final part discussing exercises and subtle changes that can be made to your daily habits to promote the long-term benefits of mindful breathing. As someone with an admittedly passive interest in biological health, I found Nestor's personal recount of this less-discussed aspect of pulmonology truly eye-opening and perfectly executable. The researcher in me was also thrilled by the number of studies referenced during the story, which serve both as pillars to support this scientific account and recommendations for further reading.

Sit back, relax, and take a nice deep breath; it might be the last one you take before Breath changes your inhales forever.

Rating: 4/5 stars