Port Kennedy Central Shopping Centre

Shop 8B/397 Warnbro Sound Avenue, 

Port Kennedy WA 6172

Port Kennedy Pharmacy

The Vagus Nerve is the longest nerve in your body, connecting your brain to many important organs, including the gut (intestines, stomach), heart and lungs.

The word 'vagus' means “wanderer” in Latin, so it depicts how the nerve wanders all over the body and reaching various organs.

What it does?

The Vagus Nerve controls your unconscious activities including digestion, heart rate, blood pressure, and immune system. It also exerts conscious control of your facial expressions, desire to socialize and your resilience to stress and emotional regulation.

The Vagus Nerve is part of your parasympathetic (“rest and digest”) nervous system. For example, it signals the muscles in your stomach to contract and push food into the small intestine. A damaged vagus nerve results in signals not being transmitted normally to your stomach muscles, often causing food to remain in your stomach longer (so you feel bloated).

Vagal tone?

Vagal tone refers to the activity of the Vagus Nerve. Having higher vagal tone means that your body can relax faster after stress, creates positive emotions, and has good physical health.

How to get good vagal tone?  You can try one or more of the following:

  • Cold exposure: Researchers have found that exposing yourself to cold increase parasympathetic activity through the Vagus Nerve.
  • Diaphragmatic breathing: Deep, slow breathing stimulates the Vagus Nerve and reduces stress and anxiety. Breath deeply into your abdomen (your chest should not move), hold and slowly breath out, hold. Repeat.
  • Singing, gargling, or chanting: The Vagus Nerve innervates your vocal cords and the muscles at the back of your throat. By singing, gargling, or chanting as loud as you can, the Vagus Nerve is stimulated !
  • Probiotics: Research has shown that gut bacteria may improve the function of the brain through their effect on the Vagus Nerve.
  • Meditation: Research has shown that regular meditation stimulates the vagus nerve, creates positive emotions and harmonious self-worth.

Stimulating the Vagus Nerve sends a message to your body that it’s time to relax and de-stress, which leads to long-term improvements in mood, wellbeing, and resilience. If you would like to know more, come in and speak to our friendly pharmacists or naturopath. We are happy to provide you with information, a laugh and encourage you in song.

The Vagus Nerve

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Port Kennedy Central Shopping Centre,

Shop 8B/397 Warnbro Sound Avenue, Port Kennedy WA 6172

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