Did you know that a healthy adult takes between 12 and 20 breaths per minute? As you breathe, you’re pulling oxygen into your lungs, which send it to the heart. The heart then distributes the oxygen throughout your body via your blood
The amount of oxygen in your blood during this process is known as your blood oxygen level, and it plays a role in every aspect of your health, as every part of your body requires oxygen to function.
If the oxygen levels in your blood become too low, you can experience symptoms such as shortness of breath and lightheadedness. This will not only cause a decline in your performance in the gym but can be dangerous to your health as well.
If you want to learn how to increase the blood oxygen level in your body, you’ve come to the right place. Listed below are 6 tips for achieving an ideal blood oxygen level.
Let’s get started.
Ways to Boost Your Blood Oxygen Level and Supercharge Your Workout
1. Stay Hydrated
One of the best ways to maintain a normal blood oxygen level is to ensure that you stay hydrated, especially during a workout.
Your body as a whole is roughly 60% water, but your lungs have an even higher water content (about 80%). This means that your lungs cannot function at the highest level without plenty of water.
Aim to get between half an ounce to an ounce of water per pound of your body weight per day, and even more if you exercise. So, for example, if you weigh 170 pounds, you would need between 85 and 170 ounces of water per day to stay hydrated.
2. Train Your Breathing
We’ve already discussed that you breathe 12-20 times per minute, but chances are, these breaths are much shallower than they should be. Because so many of us have fallen into sedentary lifestyles, or sit at a desk for a large portion of the day, we’ve forgotten how to breathe properly.
Start paying attention to your breath, both during exercise and at rest. You should be bringing in the air slowly, through your nose, and deep into your stomach, not your chest. Doing these breathing exercises will strengthen your endurance, reduce stress levels, and improve your workout, on top of preventing low oxygen levels in the blood.
3. Get More Exercise
Your body is an extremely adaptable machine. The more you exercise, the better your body will get at it. And as your exercise abilities improve, so will your VO2 max, which is the maximum amount of oxygen your body can take in during exercise.
Exercise helps to improve your breathing rate and depth, helping your lungs to absorb more oxygen. Once your body adapts to this new way of breathing and a greater level of oxygen, you’ll be able to take advantage of it even when you aren’t exercising.
If you’re interested in taking your workouts and your health to the next level, consider looking into the benefits of EWOT, or exercise with oxygen therapy.
4. Improve Your Diet
Believe it or not, the food you use to fuel your body has an impact on everything from how you feel on the inside to how you look on the outside. Different foods contain different nutrients, and there are certain types of foods that can improve the oxygen levels in your blood.
These foods are those that contain iron, which enhances the health of your red blood cells, and antioxidants, which help your body use oxygen more efficiently. Luckily, there are a variety of delicious foods that contain these nutrients.
For iron, focus on green leafy vegetables, including broccoli and kale, as well as lean proteins like eggs and fish. To get the proper amount of antioxidants, you’ll need plenty of berries. Blueberries, strawberries, cranberries, and blackberries all contain high amounts of antioxidants.
5. Get Some Fresh Air
If you can, exercise outdoors rather than inside. Assuming the air quality is acceptable where you live, fresh air can increase the amount of oxygen in your lungs and give you an extra burst of energy to tackle your workout.
Now, if your outdoor air quality is poor due to smog or other pollutants, you need to stay inside. But don’t worry, you can still get the benefits of fresh air indoors.
6. Cleanse Your Indoor Air
Whether you’re unable to exercise outdoors or simply want to get the same air quality inside that you do outside, there are a few different ways you can cleanse your indoor air. One of the easiest ways to do this is to buy houseplants.
Bringing live plants into your home will improve your indoor air quality while giving your mental health a boost as well. Ferns are an excellent option for this purpose, as they’re relatively easy to keep in good shape.
In addition to houseplants, you can light beeswax candles to reduce pollution and purify the oxygen in the air. Instead of emitting smoke, beeswax candles produce negative ions that remove air impurities.
Last but not least, a quality air purifier can take your indoor air quality to the next level. This can be an investment, but one worth making if you feel that your blood oxygen levels could use improvement.
Get More Out of Your Workout by Increasing Your Blood Oxygen Level
Learning how to increase your blood oxygen level will not only strengthen your endurance and upgrade your athletic performance but can make you feel better in your day-to-day life.
As you can see, there’s no magic behind it. It’s all about taking the best care of yourself possible and improving your health as a whole in the process.
Interested in learning more about improving your health and fitness? Take a look at our blog!