While science has only begun to validate what yoga and ayurvedic practitioners have known for 1000s of years, one thing is blatantly obvious: a regular yoga practice reduces your weight.
The amazing thing? It doesn’t even have to be an intense, vigorous, 1000 chaturangas in an hour yoga practice. Gentle yoga (even restorative yoga!) if done consistently, is enough to reduce your weight.
As Matthew Sanford said, “Yoga isn’t about putting your leg behind your head…it’s about bringing awareness to your movements, noticing what feels good, and living fully in your own body— whatever body that may be.”
By doing yoga, you gain two weight-busting advantages with no extra effort:
First, as Sanford notes, you gain a better understanding of your body. Your awareness of sensation in your body is heightened. Bye bye cravings- you’ll see them coming a mile away and you’ll be better prepared. You’ll start to see patterns emerge… such as when you’re thirsty, you crave sweets. More amazingly, when you love your body you crave foods that nourish your body. Hint: sugary, fattening foods (ahem, cupcakes) are not nourishing. And when you do crave a cupcake once every blue moon, you won’t feel bad indulging because with your heightened awareness, you’ll enjoy every bite that. much. more.
Second, yoga reduces stress. Duh. When you’re stressed, a nice little hormone called cortisol comes out to play with the fat on your tummy. So what happens when you stress less? Less cortisol= less belly fat. A study by the National Institutes of Health found women who consistently practiced yoga burned nearly 2 ½ times more body fat than the control group (these Zen ladies were only doing restoratives!)
The most important thing if you want to lose weight? Get best treadmills for home. For fifteen minutes. For two hours. As long as you’re there, you’re blasting fat.
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