5 Scientifically Supported Benefits of Yoga

Although many people consider it a mere craze, yoga is definitely much more than that. It is a combination of meditation, breathing exercises and various more or less complex poses. Yoga offers many benefits for those who practice it. Some of those benefits are subjective, but there are many that have been scientifically supported, and there are several of those.

Stress relief

Practicing yoga can help relieve you of stress, which was a subject of several scientific studies, dated from 2006 to 2016. One of these studies, conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences from Bangalore in India, has shown that yoga can help lower cortisol and consequently stress levels in people with alcohol dependence, while another, published in the Journal of International Society of Preventive & Community Dentistry, came up with the similar results with patients suffering from periodontal disease. Also, there’s an Australian study, in which 131 people participated, and which linked yoga with stress and anxiety relief, but also with improved mental health and quality of life. So, if you find yourself stressed often, yoga could be the solution to your problem.

Chronic pain reduction

There has been extensive research on the ways that yoga can reduce chronic pain, including arthritis, back pain and several other conditions. For example, a study published in 1998 by the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia dealt with pain caused by the carpal tunnel syndrome in 42 people. It showed that practicing yoga was a more efficient way to relieve pain than getting a wrist splint. This, along with other research on the subject, tells us that taking up yoga and becoming a regular practitioner of it might be what you need to get rid of your chronic pain and make your life much easier.

Breathing improvement

Yoga can help you control the way you breathe through different techniques and exercises, which can help improve your breathing. These breathing exercises, along with the relaxing poses can lead to increased vital capacity. This means that, through yoga, you can enhance the amount of air that you can expel from your lungs, and that can mean a lot to people with asthma or lung disease. When your breathing is healthy, more oxygen can reach your blood and your organs, which can improve your overall health, keep you more energized and provide you with better endurance.

Heart health enhancement

Among other benefits, all of which are important, this one may be the top one. Since the heart is one of the two most important organs we have, along with the brain. It provides your whole body with gases and nutrients by circulating blood through your lungs and beyond, so it’s essential to maintain its health. The way yoga can help with this is by reducing some of the risk factors for cardiovascular disease. For instance, a 2003 research made a connection between practicing yoga and lower heart rate and blood pressure, which can lower your chances of heart problems. Plus, since stress can greatly contribute to the development of heart issues, by relieving you of it, yoga may become a significant factor in keeping heart disease at bay.

Anti-inflammatory features

Although inflammation is a common and sometimes harmless immune reaction, if it becomes chronic, it can promote the development of pro-inflammatory diseases in our body. These include some extremely serious health problems, like diabetes heart disease and even cancer. A study conducted in 2015 showed that people who practiced yoga during the period of about five years had lower inflammatory marker levels than the ones who didn’t. Even though more research could help confirm these benefits of yoga on inflammatory markers, there is still some evidence that by practicing yoga, you can guard yourself against different diseases caused by chronic inflammation.

Not only can yoga make you happier and more self-assured, as well as improve your flexibility and strength, but it can also contribute greatly to your wellness and keep you safe from some serious health conditions. This is why, if you’re wondering what type of physical activity you should take up, yoga is definitely something you should consider and try. Your body and mind will be grateful.

Zara Lewis
Zara Lewis is a proud mom of two, life coach and fitness and yoga enthusiast, passionate about promoting healthy lifestyle and creating a better world for the generations to come. She enjoys spending her free time with her family traveling, hiking and cycling. They love to experiment in the kitchen together and have lots of fun trying out new tastes.