Weight regulation

Many perceive Carbon-diOxide as a light, almost weightless gas, but it’s relatively heavy. Trees grow slowly to weigh hundreds of kilos or even tons by ‘patiently’ extracting Carbon from the Carbon-diOxide they ‘inhale.’ More than half of a tree’s weight comes from the gases it ‘inhales.’

I inhale the relatively light Oxygen, and exhale the heavier Carbon-diOxide; this is how I lose actual body weight.

Gasses and food-fuels

Gasses, solids, and liquids continuously go in and out of my body. I can use some of the food and gasses I intake, but some are non-usable, and I need to dispose of them. My lungs deal with the gasses, and my digesting system with solids and liquids (water).

To better understand body weight changes, I separate all that I ingest into three groups:

  1. Nonusable stuff.
  2. Water
  3. Useable materials.

Nonusable stuff and water

I eliminate the nonusable stuff in the toilet (poop). It may contain water, fiber, bacteria, and other foodstuffs I failed to chew.

My body uses water for chemical processes, conversions,  cleaning, and cooling. Some of the water I discharge when I urinate contains small amounts of solids. More than 50% of my body weight is water; I can’t afford to go below a certain minimum of this vital liquid.

Useable materials

My digesting system breaks down the useable materials I eat and drink into:

  • Sugar and Fat – burnable ‘food fuels.’
  • Proteins – building blocks (which are also burnable).
  • Minerals and vitamins.
  • Water.

After the initial breakdown, a conversion process goes on for efficient burning. For example, different Carbohydrates convert into body-Sugar, and fats convert into body-Fat.

My body cells get a constant supply of these converted ‘food fuels.’ The cells extract energy from them, mainly by ‘burning’ in the presence of Oxygen, but also, to a limited extent, by fermenting them without Oxygen.

Some organs in my body ‘operate’ exclusively on body-Sugars, for example, my brain. Other organs, like my heart, function best when it burns body-Fat.

It’s relatively easy for my body to convert sugar into a burnable body-Sugar. Body-Sugar activates powerful reward mechanisms in my brain, making me want more & more & more of it.

My body’s ability to store body Sugars for future use is poor, but it can better accumulate body-Fat. Therefore surplus body-Sugars are converted into body-Fat, functioning as an energy reserve.


Body-Fat has allowed humans to survive food shortages throughout their evolution and wander around without needing constant ‘refueling.’ It was helpful when we were hunters and gatherers, roaming looking for food. Then we settled down and started cultivating and growing foods. As a result, our diet has changed drastically. The new diet allowed us to quickly ‘charge our batteries’ with foods rich in Carbohydrates (convertible to sugar), for instance, processed flour.  The variety of foods we ate once this revolution started was limited. The way we activate the body has also changed. People became heavier as their bodies kept storing Fat.

Then came the industrial revolution, which changed the eating habits of many people worldwide. On the one hand, it made foods more abundant; on the other hand, processing foods became more common. After processing, many foods became ‘digestible stuff’ rather than nourishing food. This abundance of low-quality foods, coupled with lifestyle changes, is one of the causes of obesity, which is now a world epidemic. More people are dying due to over-eating in the industrialized parts of the world than food deficiency.  

Up until not so long ago, being overweight was considered healthy, and people tried to gain weight. The concept was that having reserves during a food shortage improves survival chances. Body fat also became a status symbol showing food abundance. However, following a concept revision, being overweight is now widely regarded as an overload on the body. As a result, many people have set a goal to lose weight. In some cases, it’s justified, but not in all.

There needs to be a negative food-fuel balance to lose weight; in other words, we need to eat less than we burn. Drastically cutting down on eating is challenging because of our strong instinct to ‘refuel.’ Being overweight is not easy, and so is losing weight.

Weight changes calculations

A quick reminder, the air I inhale consists of roughly

  • 80% N
  • 20% Oxygen.

The air I exhale air consists of roughly

  • 80% N
  • 16% O
  • 4% Carbon-diOxide.

The added Carbon to the air I exhale makes it heavier than the air I inhale. That is the key to understanding how body weight is regulated by breathing.

It’s convenient to distinguish between body weight and actual body weight to understand better how weight is lost or gained.

  • Body weight includes
  1. Nonusable stuff.
  2. Water.
  3. Usable material.

Actual body weight includes Only the usable material.

My body weight increases when I eat and drink. It decreases when I  sweat, urinate, eliminate and exhale gases. It’s my breathing that regulates my actual body weight by exhaling a heavier gas than inhaling.

It may seem that if I sit down and hyperventilate, I will expel more Carbon-diOxide from my body and lose more of my actual body weight. That is, of course, not the case; in fact, people who unconsciously hyperventilate tend to be overweight.

When hyperventilating, levels of Carbon-diOxide in my bloodstream drop, my blood vessels constrict, and as a result, less Oxygen and ‘food fuels’ get to the cells. When attempting to lose actual body weight, there needs to be a sufficient supply of Oxygen and ‘food fuel’ to the cells. Without burning ‘food fuels,’ there is no way to lose actual body weight.

Skip this if calculations and fine details make you dizzy

Note: the values used are rounded & averaged.

The volume of my tidal breathing is about 0.5L (0.13gal) of air, weighing 0.6gr (0.0013lb); I breathe about 22.000 times daily.

22.000 X 0.6 (0.0013lb)= about 13Kg (28lb).

Every day I take about 13kg (28lb) of air into my body. Roughly every 50 days, I consume solid foods (usable and Nonusable, excluding water) equal to my body weight, which is about 60kg (140lb).

60 ÷ 50 = about 1.2kg (2.6lb) per day.

I take about 1.2kg (2.6lb) of solid food into my body daily. The daily air going into my body weighs much more than my daily food intake.

The air I exhale is heavier than the air I inhale. Carbon-diOxide weighs more than Oxygen, which adds about 0.01gr (0.000022lb) to every exhale. This additional small fraction may seem insignificant, but it becomes significant when multiplying it by the number of times I breathe every day, 22.000.

0.01gr (0.000022lb) X 22.000 = 220gr (0.5lb) per-day.

So, on average, I lose 220gr (0.5lb) of actual body weight daily because of the difference between inhaled and exhaled air weight.

One way I can lose actual body weight is to ensure I supply my body with fewer ‘food fuels’ than it burns. My body will then revert to its body-Fat reserves, and with time I can reduce my actual body weight by about 220gr (0.5lb) every day. When I exercise aerobically,  my daily weight loss is even higher because that increases the number of my breaths. For example, if my breathing increases to 33.000 times a day when I work out, I would lose 330gr (0.7lb) every day.

0.01gr (0.000022lb)  X 33.000 = 330gr (0.7lb) per-day.

Burning fat

During exertion, when my muscles are active, my body prioritizes body-Sugar over body-Fat for the burning process. Burning body-Sugar requires less Oxygen than other ‘food fuels’ and is more effective for intensive muscle use. When there’s insufficient body-Sugar in the bloodstream, my body resorts to its body-Fat reserves.

My body burns body-Fat, and as a result, heat and mechanical energy are released to power my muscles. While body-Fat has weight, heat and mechanical energy are weightless.

Important: Weight can’t just transform into energy or disappear; it’s always conserved. Always!

Skip this if calculations and fine details make you dizzy

Where does the weight go when I burn body-Fat? Here is an example:

To burn 10kg (22lb) of my body Fat 29kg (64lb) of Oxygen is needed.

The burning process of body-Fat in the presence of  Oxygen produces 28kg (62lb) of Carbon-diOxide and 11kg (24lb) of water.

Equation showing weight preservation after the burning process.

10kg (22lb) body-Fat + 29kg (64lb) Oxygen = 28kg (62lb) Carbon-diOxide + 11kg (24lb) Water.

Blood sugar regulation

Just as Carbon-diOxide level triggers my breathing, the body-Sugar level in my bloodstream triggers my eating instinct. Body Sugar is the main fuel my cells run on. When my digesting system releases body-Sugar into my bloodstream, my pancreas gland secretes insulin which controls body-Sugar levels and helps move body-Sugar from my bloodstream to my cells.  A poor supply or ineffective insulin may cause a shift from burning body-Sugar to burning primarily body-Fat. With a shortage of insulin, the body resorts to its Fat reserves, which may lead to an overall body weight reduction. This way of losing weight is extremely unhealthy because body cells operate with mismatched fuels.

Although my diaphragm does not come in direct contact with my pancreas, flexing the diaphragm gives my pancreas an indirect push. Pancreas movement increases my insulin secretion, which is vital for body-Sugar regulation. Activating my diaphragm induces insulin production.

Pancreas stimulation tool  

  • I inhale slowly through my nose to maximum diaphragm amplitude.
  • Exhale while making abrupt stomach contractions similar to the exercise Breath of fire.
  • Repeat for a few rounds.

Inducing weight loss

All this jazz about actual body weight is interesting, but can I use it for losing weight? When Carbon-diOxide levels in my bloodstream are high enough, hemoglobin readily releases Oxygen to the cells, allowing smooth burning. Furthermore, high levels of Carbon-diOxide in my bloodstream dilate my blood vessels, allowing a smooth supply of ‘food fuels’ to my cells.

Just as wood burns poorly and starts to smoke when there’s insufficient Oxygen around it, the same goes for cellular burning. So I must have sufficient Oxygen, and ‘food fuels’ for proper burning.  One of the results of insufficient supply of Oxygen, and ‘food fuels’ is weight irregularities.

Breathing slowly and (proportionally) deeply contributes to raising the levels of Carbon-diOxide in my bloodstream, which may facilitate weight loss. Using my nose to inhale and exhale ‘automatically’ slows down breathing causing an increase in Carbon-diOxide. When having higher-than-normal levels of Carbon-diOxide in my bloodstream, I tend to feel less hungry. Conversely, I tend to feel more hungry when I breathe fast, for example, when I hyperventilate.

Mouth breathers use the same channel for eating and breathing. As a result, there needs to be more coordination when eating. That may lead to partial chewing, quick swallowing, and improper digestion, which can cause weight irregularities.

When my diaphragm muscle drives my breathing, the digesting organs are physically ‘massaged.’ That can improve my digestion. However, diaphragmatic breathing requires pushing the stomach out. It’s more difficult for people with a ‘big stomach’ to do this pushing, so unconsciously, their ‘breathing app’ migrates their breathing upwards to the ribcage and chest. The result is an absence of ‘massaging’ to the digesting organs.

By straightening the head when breathing, I improve airflow and Oxygen supply. People burdened with overweight tend to have ‘padded necks,’ which may restrict airflow in the windpipe.

The way I breathe affects my body’s water reserves. For example, when I breathe through my nose, I preserve body liquids; while using my mouth, I spend them. A deficiency in body water reserves may result in reduced humidification of the air I inhale, affecting Oxygen absorption in my lungs. The amount of my body water may also affect my appetite. Sometimes I feel the urge to eat because of water deficiency, not because of other lacs. Therefore, the first step in an effective diet is ensuring my body is sufficiently hydrated, particularly before meals.

A person may do all the right things to lose weight but still have no success. There is a better chance of losing weight when breathing suits our actions. Night time may also be a weak link in a weight loss effort. Roughly one-third of our breathing takes place at night. Poor night breathing may negatively affect how we burn ‘food fuels.’

The negative and positive reverse


Reversed breathing, where the stomach goes backward instead of forward when inhaling, may create ‘body confusion.’ When the stomach is pressed in while I inhale, my breathing app gets a mismatching signal. That should be addressed when trying to lose weight.


When I’m resting and inactive, my breathing ratio tends to be so that my exhale duration is longer than my inhale. However, when I activate my body aerobically, making a physical effort, my breathing ratio instinctively reverses. So what happens is that my inhale duration becomes longer than my exhale.

If my exhale duration is longer than my inhale while making a physical effort, it may ‘confuse’ my body and affect the burning process in my cells.

Healthy animals running after a pray or escaping a predator tend to prolong or equal their inhale duration compared to their exhale. Their lives depend on it; those escaping may be eaten alive, and those chasing may die of hunger. I would guess they breathe right.

So when I activate my body aerobically, I once in a while check that my breathing ratio is reversed. That improves the chances of weight regulation.

Matching breathing for losing weight tool

  • Exclusive nose breathing.
  • Engage the diaphragm as the primary breathing muscle.
  • Extend the duration of inhaling compared to exhaling or keep it equal when aerobically active.
  • Avoid reversed breathing.
  • Monitor proper breathing during sleeping hours.
  • Keep a straight neck.
  • Visualize inhaling light Oxygen and exhaling heavy Carbon-diOxide.


The emotions I experience impact the way my digestive system operates. It’s my gut that is often first to point out to me I’m in a state of stress or over-excited. For example, I may respond to stress by involuntary spasms in my colon, which increases my bowel movement and sends me frequently toward the toilet.

The same nerve (Vagus) connecting my lungs to my brain branches out and links my digesting organs. Because of that, I can indirectly impact my digestion with my breathing. So when I feel ‘emotional butterflies’ in my stomach, I try to implement a relaxing breathing tool.

My digesting system may get irritated because of inappropriate food ingestion, microbes, and other non-emotional related reasons. I try to use my diaphragm muscles to ease the discomfort in these cases. My food pipe passes right through my diaphragm, and my diaphragm presses on my intestines when I inhale. I can give myself a gut massage by breathing diaphragmatically to maximum amplitude. That sometimes helps when having a troubled stomach.

Food craving and binging

In some cases, I found myself binging as means of drowning negative emotions. Food cravings are a tough challenge, particularly for foods high in sugar; these bring comfort and other side effects. I sometimes have an internal struggle to eat or not to eat. If I manage, I use my thinking and remind myself that food is a ‘fule’ I run on and I shouldn’t over-associate it with pleasure. Comfort and pleasures I can find in many other things, but that’s good in theory. Being able to moderate the internal struggle with a known and rehearsed breathing procedure is something practical. Not only that, I take action, but there is also a physiological effect.

Even though I strongly encouraged nose breathing for weight regulation, mouth breathing for a few cycles works better for me when a momentary food craving occurs. In particular, breathing, similar to the exercise dying man’s breathing.

Food cravings response tool

  • Exclusive mouth breathing.
  • Quick inhale to half diaphragm amplitude followed by a short exhale.
  • Hold my breath for about 6 sec.
  • Repeat for a few rounds.

Remarks and details

I hold my breath for about a fifth of my ‘air hunger start time’ which is 31 sec.

          31÷5= about 6 sec.

I exaggerate my breathing and move my body backward when I inhale and forward when I exhale.