Also during the study, participants reported reduced levels of stress and anxiety. That led Panos and Zafar to investigate the benefits of their device for mindful breathing and anxiety reduction.

“Slow breathing and focused breathing have many effects on our body,” Zafar said. “It reduces the stress hormone levels, it reduces the heart rate, and it also reduces the blood pressure.

“It helps you focus on your breathing, which is a very important part of mindful breathing for relaxation.”

Zafar expects PEP Buddy will be beneficial for a wide variety of people and improve their quality of life, whether they suffer from breathlessness or want to improve their mindful breathing. He wants the reusable device, which can be cleaned with soap and water or in a dishwasher, to be accessible and affordable to everyone.

PEP Buddy will be available for purchase later this month through the company’s website,, and on Amazon. Zafar and Panos eventually plan for PEP Buddy, which is being manufactured in Dayton, Ohio, to be available in stores and doctors’ offices as well.

“There’s a huge audience out there who needs help,” Zafar said. “We want to help everyone we can.”

Featured image at top: PEP Buddy. All photos provided.

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