Article by Melody Biggar
Yoga curbs stress, sheds pounds, eliminates toxins, lowers cholesterol and reduces cravings.
Yoga is one of the most holistic exercises there is, focusing on the trinity of mind, body, and spirit. Countless benefits include easing anxiety, improving coordination, strength, and posture, and aids in weight-loss because it combines deep breathing, relaxing meditation, and limbering poses.
Breathe Deeply, Burn Fat
When you breathe deeply and consciously – instead of taking short, shallow breaths – you not only feel more relaxed, you burn more calories. Studies have shown that regular deep breathing burns up to 140% more calories than riding a stationary bike
To lose the unwanted pounds quickly, try Bikram yoga, which is a mix of low-key twisting poses and cardio exercises performed in a room where the temperature has been raised higher than 100 degrees, making you sweat out those harmful toxins; or Ashtanga Yoga, which combines complex yoga poses with deep breathing techniques.
These twisting poses stimulate your internal organs, which in turn boosts your metabolism, helping you to lose weight. And since Bikram yoga is practiced in such high temperatures, when your body sweats out toxins you then lose weight. Yoga also reduces stress hormones and increases insulin sensitivity, so your body kicks into fat-burning mode and burns food as fuel rather than storing it as fat.
Doing even one session of yoga will help tighten your muscles and improve your posture, making you look and feel five pounds leaner. The more often you practice yoga, the more patience and self control you learn. As you become more disciplined, you become better able to ignore cravings for unhealthy food, which is a key component of any effective weight loss program.
Inverted Yoga-Decreased Cholesterol
You can control your cholesterol and blood pressure by doing yoga and eating plant-based foods. When you practice inverted yoga poses, including the the crane pose, the plough pose, and the headstand , your l egs and abdomen are higher than your heart, which allows blood to flow throughout your body and increases your circulation. Inverted yoga poses not only improve your cardiovascular health, they stimulate your brain and glandular system, and relieve pressure on your abdominal organs.
Another type of yoga, known as integrative yoga therapy, is sometimes used to alleviate certain medical conditions, including asthma, clinical depression, insomnia, back pain, arthritis and multiple sclerosis.
Karmic Benefits of Yoga
While yoga has many amazing physical benefits, it can also be good for your soul. One of the main tenants of yoga is ahimsa, a Sanskrit term meaning to do no harm to any living being. At the end of each yoga practice the partipant bow to each other and say “Namaste,” which means “The light within me honors the light within you.”
There’s virtually no limit to what yoga can do for your body and your spirit. You are never too out of shape to take up yoga. As Bikram Choudhury, the founder of Bikram yoga says “Never too late, never too old, never too bad and never too sick to do this yoga and start from scratch again.”. If you’ve been struggling to lose weight, eat healthily, and improve your strength, posture, and flexibility, fitting yoga into your lifestyle is a wise and healthy choice.
About the Author
Melody Biggar is a writer for Holistic Voice- your online guide to living a natural, organic and healthy lifestyle.
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