Health Problems You Can Fix with Yoga

Before it became a lifestyle staple in Hollywood, yoga for most people bring to mind images of people sitting cross-legged on the floor and groaning low ohmmm’s. But now, more and more people and celebrities are claiming that yoga transformed them. Bet you’re wondering how.

Elements of Yoga

Yoga has three elements, each one having its benefits.

Asanas – refers to the physical poses and exercises which help align the spine, energize glands, improve blood flow, induce relaxation and enhance well-being.

Pranayama – refers to the control of breath. Breathing is normally slow, deep and abdominal. The control of breath clears blockages caused by stress, toxins or unhealthy diets.

Dhyana – refers to meditation. This can stimulate relaxation the autonomic nervous system and aid in medical conditions such as blood pressure and stress-related and mood disorders.

Health benefits of yoga

Reduce stress

It can affect the wear and tear of the body that is linked with stress. After going through difficult "flight or flee" situation, yoga can bring you down from such a stressful level and reduce the stress hormones released in the body. Yoga can also combat mental and physical deterioration caused by chronic stress by reducing stress hormones.

Relieve anxiety

Practicing yoga can help you develop a stronger state of mind, enabling you to effectively cope with anxiety. Its disciplined postures create a sense of control. Studies show that yoga can soothe daily highs and lows caused by feelings of anxiety.

Increase in energy

Practitioners claim to have increased energy levels. A British study revealed that 30 minutes of yoga poses, stretching and breathing exercises resulted in "markedly invigorating effect" both mental and physical energy. The controlled poses of yoga boost blood flow, causing energy levels to increase. Another study of 135 male and female hatha yoga participants (6 months) showed improvements in energy, well-being and quality of life.

Boosts mood

The same British study also found that 30 minutes of regular yoga increased alertness and enthusiasm. Studies who checked brain scans of patients suffering from depression found that GABA levels increased after an hour of yoga. Low levels of the GABA neurotransmitter is linked to depression.

Treat insomnia

Yoga enhances bodily functions – e.g. improvements in the nervous system (specifically the brain), increase in blood flow – that can improve the quality of sleep. Improved quality of sleep allows you to reach REM sleep – that level where in our body can really rest, and from which we wake up feeling well-rested and refreshed. You’re also likely to fall asleep faster because of a relaxed mind and body, thanks to yoga.

Aid in controlling ADHD

Through yoga, one can attain a mind and body connection. An well-coordinated mind and body may be very beneficial to people with ADHD. Practicing yoga may help placate their impulsive and hyperactive behaviors, and encourage a better sense of control and concentration.