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A Technical Introduction by K.P Buteyko

                                                                                                                                                                                        Thirty-seven years passed since I managed to discover the cause of the so called "diseases of civilisation" (broncho and vascular spas ms, allergy, etc.) The only cause of them is alveoli hyperventilation, or deep breathing. The idea which came to my mind was that by decreasing the depth of breathing, or in other words, by the normalisation of the breathing we could cure that range of illne sses. The idea was based on fundamental laws of physiology, biochemistry, biology and so on, and the correctness of that assumption was confirmed by experiments and tests. 

The main postulates of my theory are:

1. It is known that while breathing deeply the organism exhales too much CO2 and therefore its content in lungs, blood and cells decreases. The lack of CO2  caused by deep breathing changes blood pH toward the alkaline direction.

Such a change of blood pH badly influences the activities of all enzymes (there are about 1000) and vitamins (there are about 20). As a result, the whole metabolism suffers. And, when blood pH is reaching 8, the metabolism becomes improper to the extent that the organism dies.

2. It is also known that the lack of CO2 leads to spasms of bronchial smooth muscles, brain vessels, heart, intestines, gall ducts and other organs.

At the end of the 19th century the Russian scientist Mr. Verigo from the town of Perm discovered a seemingly weird law. According to him, as a result of a fall Of CO2 in blood the bond between oxygen and haemoglobin becomes stronger. This creates difficulties in the oxygen transition from blood to brain cells, heart, kidney and other organs. In other words, the deeper the breathing, the less oxygen is available for the brain, heart and kidney cells. This particular law, not very well known so far, underlies our discovery. As the Verigo law was left under wraps, the same discovery was much later made by a Danish scientist and named the Bohr Law. Being unfamiliar with this law will result in great difficulties in understanding and accepting the theory offered by us.

3. The lack of oxygen in the brain (hypoxia), caused by the deep breathing, is aggravated by broncho and angiospasms - the organism's attempts to compensate for hypoxia of vital organs - and results in high blood pressure (arterial hypertension).Consequently, the blood flow increases and blood supply to the organs improves.

Along with the lung hyperventilation, the hypoxia creates a false feeling of lack of air, accompanied by intensified breathing. This leads to an inevitable progression of the disease of CO2 deficiency in nerve cells, stimulating the whole nervous system, and this makes the organism breathe even deeper. Thereby, the nerve cell hypoxia, along with upset metabolism and over-excitement of the nervous system, causes weakness of the intellect and destroys the nervous system (brain vessel sclerosis). And that finally leads to a mentality dysfunction.

4. Destruction produced by deep breathing is aggravated by poisoning of the environment and food with chemicals, herbicides and medications. If it is so, then all of Western medicine's main principles are based on methods of prevention and treatment, consisting of teaching people deep breathing techniques, that only assists in creating those diseases. At the same time, deep breathing exercises and broncho-vasodilatory medications that increase the rate of CO2 removal from the body do not improve but worsen the state of already ill patients. That is why the so called "diseases of  civilization" are not yielding to treatment but spreading even further. The discovery of the fact that deep breathing is the main cause of those illnesses allows us to prove scientifically and experimentally that existing principles and methods of treatment are faulty.

The hyperventilation test, offered by us, represents incontestable evidence of the correctness of our discovery. The idea of the test is to ask a patient to deepen the breath and check how the widespread recommendation "Breath deeper!" affects that person. In a few seconds or minutes the hyperventilation test provokes or intensifies symptoms while the lessening of the depth of breathing quickly stops them. This means that the only scientifically explained principle for prevention and treatment of the illnesses of the century is a decrease of the depth of breathing in order to normalise its physiological function.

Based on this idea, the method of the intentional normalisation of breathing, or in other words, the deliberate volitional breathing method (DVBM) was developed.

The principle is based on decreasing the depth of breathing by deliberate efforts made by the patient to relax respiratory muscles until the feeling of some shortage of air. All mentally sound adults and children from the age of three are able to learn the method. Our ideas can be used on a broader scale ‑ starting from antenatal training of prospective mothers, caring for infants, teaching children some physiological norms and finishing by the implementation of the general health improvement program for the entire population. The ideas also can be used widely in space medicine, surgical practice (as a part of the preparation to complex surgeries), pedagogy, singers' training and sport.

In common opinion, medicine (similar to many other  sciences) needs to be radically reshaped. We are seeing our ideas ‑ along with other progressive but previously rejected ideas as a foundation of future medicine.

We believe the first and foremost task is to give people the information about our discovery in order to stop the deep breathing propaganda by radio, TV and mass media and to cancel deep breathing exercises at the hospitals and clinics.

The complete victory will come when the whole civilised world realises: the deep breathing principle of greed is the worst of human vices. That it is the source of almost all troubles, the main cause of diseases and death for the overwhelming majority of human beings.

K.P. Buteyko