Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Unlocking Vitality: The Vagus Nerve and Energizing Techniques

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How many of us wake up feeling tired, stressed, or feel our energy diminish as the day progresses? 

In the pursuit of optimal health and well-being, we often overlook the incredible ability of our own bodies to actually rejuvenate themselves. 

The other day my good friend Vicki shared a 10 minute rejuvenation video with me that Vicki found on Youtube regarding our "Vagus Nerve". 


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Of course I had never heard of the vagus nerve, so the first thing I did was look for some solid research into understanding about the function of the vagus nerve and its impact on our bodies. This is what I learned.

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The vagus nerve plays a crucial role in regulating numerous bodily functions, from heart rate and digestion to mood and immune response. Ancient practices such as yoga, qigong, and tai-chi teach simple techniques to help energize and activate our nerves, glands, and organs, for improved vitality and wellness.

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The vagus nerve, also known as the 10th cranial nerve, is the longest cranial nerve in the body, running from the brainstem down through the neck and branching out to various organs, including the heart, lungs, stomach, and intestines. It serves as a vital communication highway between the brain and the rest of the body, playing a pivotal role in the parasympathetic nervous system, often referred to as the "rest and digest" system.

Some functions of the Vagus Nerve:

  1. Regulates Heart Rate: The vagus nerve helps to maintain a steady heart rate, exerting a calming influence on the cardiovascular system.
  2. Controls Digestion: It stimulates the release of digestive enzymes and promotes gut motility, aiding in the digestion and absorption of nutrients.
  3. Modulates Inflammation: The vagus nerve has anti-inflammatory effects, helping to reduce inflammation throughout the body and support immune function.
  4. Regulates Mood and Stress: Through its connections with areas of the brain associated with emotions, the vagus nerve plays a role in mood regulation and stress management.
  5. Promotes Relaxation: Stimulation of the vagus nerve induces a state of relaxation and tranquility, counteracting the effects of the sympathetic nervous system, which governs the body's "fight or flight" response.

I found a great deal of information on the vagus nerve including techniques to help stimulate and energize this vital nerve to help promote vitality and relaxation. 

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Here is a list of some of the information I found. 

  1. Deep Breathing Exercises: Deep, diaphragmatic breathing activates the vagus nerve, sending signals to the brain to induce relaxation and reduce stress. Breathing techniques such as belly breathing, box breathing, or alternate nostril breathing helps to engage the vagus nerve and promote a sense of calm. I know first hand that deep breathing exercises worked for my mother-in-law.

  2. Cold Exposure: Cold showers or immersions in cold water can activate the vagus nerve and stimulate the body's natural stress response, leading to increased resilience and vitality. Brief exposures to cold water to begin, and then gradually increase the duration as tolerated. (This one is definetely not for me, but my son does it and finds benefit)

  3. Yoga and Meditation: Practices such as yoga and meditation have been shown to enhance vagal tone, improving the function of the vagus nerve and promoting relaxation.  Check out Youtube where you can find many short videos that can easily be done at home for both yoga and meditation.

  4. Laughter and Social Connection: Laughter and positive social interactions helps stimulate the vagus nerve, promoting feelings of happiness and well-being. Spending time with loved ones, engaging in activities that bring you joy, and cultivating a sense of humor influences and nourishes the vagus nerve.

  5. Gargling: Surprisingly, something as simple as gargling can activate the vagus nerve. Gargling with warm salt water for 30 seconds helps stimulate the muscles in the back of the throat, which are connected to the vagus nerve.

Youtube provides many choices of yoga, tai-chi, chi-gong, self-care, exercise and vagus nerve videos. A simple search on the vagus nerve will provide a variety of simple techniques that you can do at home. 

My friend Vicki found this one (link to the Youtube) which I am not promoting, I only tried it.

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                               this one or a shorter one (link to the Youtube) 

I tried it, it took 10 minutes of basically tapping on my stomach and belly button, and I actually felt more relaxed after doing it. It seems innocent enough as it is mostly tapping on the area of the stomach and bellybutton. 

There is also a one minute energizer reset- here  (link to the YouTube)

According to the research, by incorporating simple yet effective techniques to stimulate and energize the vagus nerve into your daily routine, you can enhance your vitality and reduce symptoms of stress.

I'll be trying this 10 minute technique for the next 10 days and keep you posted...

I want to share a recipe as well: I make it with cherry tomatoes!! A delicious easy soup rich in anti-oxidants and nutrients!

bowl of tomato carrot soup , vegan, gluten-free soup

 Roasted Tomato and Carrot Soup  (link to recipe) 

As always I must share the following disclaimer: 

Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor and I am not trying to diagnose, treat or cure illness. The information in this blogpost is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes. If you are having medical issues always consult a qualified medical doctor before changing your diet or doing any exercises. 



  1. I have watched a few videos on vagus nerve...well, haven't tried it out yet. I love yoga and meditation. The soup sounds absolutely wonderful!

    1. Angie- I used to be better about yoga and meditation but I've gotten lazy.

  2. I should try the tapping! I have used tapping in the past, and really need to get back to it.

    1. Me too...I do things, they work and then I forget about them.

  3. I tried the video and really enjoyed it! I will do it again. Thank you!

    1. Me too.. I'll do it again. I added another one minute version.

  4. Thank you for sharing this information. I've never heard of the vagus nerve before and will definately look into it further.

  5. Thank you for sharing this information. I've never heard of the vagus nerve before and will definately look into it further.

    1. New to me too.. but if it works, I'll try it.

  6. This is fascinating. I had to laugh though when I clicked on the first video and the lady said "Hello earth citizens" ... hahahaha! Nope. Anyway I have found some wonderful 20-minute yoga routines on YT and have enjoyed doing them. So calming. And my healthcare provider always encourages me to do deep-breathing exercises. Just a good idea, in addition to that daily walk. I've never heard of the bellybutton tapping but what does one have to lose? Hahhaha thanks Judee! xoxo

  7. Jenny- I can't stop laughing- It is even funnier when I see it in writing. I have no idea what that is the earth citizens it about!!! I had to call my friend Vicki and we both got a good laugh..

  8. what fantastic information...and the video was great. interesting stuff, i am going to try the soup recipe!!

  9. I haven't about the vegus nerve's exercises - very interesting information!

  10. wow that is really fascinating about the vagus nerve. I must try some of those techniques!

  11. Interesting reading, will check it out more.

  12. This is very interesting. I've never heard of the vagus nerve either. Thank you for sharing this important info. with us.


  13. I'm with you Judee. On the lookout for simple, healthful ways to improve health and well-being. The vagus nerve techniques you mention are tops.


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