Medically reviewed by Shanmukha Priya, M.Phil and Ph.D. in Food Science and Nutrition
India is the home to Yoga, a practice that combines different yoga poses, breathing techniques and meditation.
This ancient Indian science does more than just acquaint you with nooks and crannies in your body that you doubt existed!.
While the benefits of yoga have always been known, recently it has outreached on a broader level. We can even see our PM, Narendra Modi making efforts in uplifting Yoga practices.
Today, he was seen performing Yoga Asanas in the rain at Lucknow’s Ambedkar Sabha Sthal, to celebrate the International Yoga Day along with thousands of people.
“Today, Yoga has become a part of so many lives. Yoga’s popularity outside India is high & has connected the world with India.”
– Narendra Modi
There are many types of yoga too such as the Iyengar Yoga, Hatha Yoga, even the most recent and popular Patanjali yoga or Ramdev Yoga.
On the day of International Yoga Day, we decided to venerate this science.
Presenting 11 lesser known benefits of yoga with yoga videos that is sure to leave you surprised and beelining outside a yoga class!
1. Yoga’s Two-Pronged Actions on Immunity
And you thought yoga for weight loss would be the first point. Yoga helps greatly in boosting immunity.
Yes, you read it right! A 2013 study in Plos One journal found that Hatha yoga resulted in a 3-fold increase in immune boosting genes and that too just within 2 hours of practising!
Apart from this, various yoga asanas help tackle stress, one of the key factors draining immunity. Guess yoga is the way to go to combat pollution and free radicals.
So this yoga day, start out well by practising this yoga for beginners poses as shown by Sobha Rani.
To know more about different yoga asanas and how you can incorporate them into your daily life, you can always consult our Possible Nutritionists.
And now you can have the first consultation for FREE! Yes, avail it right here!
2. Pump Up the Good Blood with these Yoga Asanas
This might seem like a no-brainer but the science behind it is wondrous. Inverted yoga postures such as the sirisasana, Sarvangasana mayurasana channelize impure blood from the lower part of the body to the heart and lungs where it is infused with oxygen.
Better oxygen flow means the better performance of the organs. In addition, yoga helps to thin blood, reducing the risk of the big daddies of heart issues such as heart attack and stroke. This is just among one of the benefits of yoga.
Doesn’t matter which type of yoga you practice, be it Patanjali Yoga propagated by Ramdev Baba, the important fact is to practice yoga regularly.
3. Migrate Pesky Migraines Away with Yoga
Are migraines crippling your life? Behold the benefits of yoga exercises to banish those aches to never-land.
A recent study found that practicing yoga poses for 3 months helped reduce migraine frequency and associated ugly effects.
Another reason for flexing away to glory. Yoga for weight loss would be looking at this great science with a myopic view.
Yoga is about awakening. Yoga is about creating a life that brings more beauty and more love into the world. Make your life Beautiful on this International Yoga Day.
4. Sleep Your Troubles Off with Yoga Poses
Although most of us battle away excess sleep, for some people with insomnia (sleeplessness), it is a different battle altogether. Much to their good luck, yoga benefits them too.
Research finds restorative yoga asanas such as savasana, pranayama, and even meditation to encourage sleep.
Many researchers have blamed overactive mental and physical processes for sleeplessness.
Yoga helps calm and soothe them, lulling one to a long night’s sleep. So this International Yoga Day, flex for a good sleep.
5. Yoga for Weight Loss: Fight Those Food Cravings
Every weight watcher has their own personal war: resisting snacks; ‘complementing’ dinner with something sweet, among many.
This ability to fight and win the taste battle can be made easy with yoga, say researchers.
A recent study found that people practising different types of yoga reported weight loss.
Yoga promotes mindful meditation training the capricious mind to focus on breathing, meditation and holding difficult yoga poses.
A trained mind is better poised to distinguish between hunger and eating on a ‘whim’. So are you in on this weight loss yoga technique?
Did you know International Yoga Day repeats on the longest day in summer every year? This is also called Summer Solstice. A good day to try out different yoga asanas
6. Explore many Hues than Just the Blues
‘Being depressed’ is a commonly thrown around phrase for feeling low but the actual illness is not a matter to boast off. Consistent yoga has shown to help in depression.
On the scientific front, research shows that yoga and meditation help increase the levels of ‘feel good’ serotonin and decrease the activity of monoamine oxidase enzyme.
This enzyme is responsible for the breakdown of the feel good hormones which keep you up and away from earthly troubles. So go ahead and do that Ramdev yoga when you are down and out.
7. Strong Bones Just a Stretch Away
It is a well-documented fact that weight training helps improve bone strength.
Many of the yoga postures require lifting your own body weight. Hence, practitioners recommend yoga for weight loss.
Some postures such as adho mukha śvānāsana or the downward facing dog help train the arm muscles and strengthen bones in the arm, which are more susceptible to osteoporotic fractures (the ones where your bones look like sponge and fractures at the slightest instant).
International Yoga Day Quote: In the practice of yoga one can emphasize the body, the mind or the self and hence the effort can never be fruitless.
Additionally, yoga also helps lower the levels of stress hormones cortisol which erodes calcium from the bones. Strong bones seem like a dream when you are ageing.
Hence, it is all the more imperative to do yoga! Possible’s fitness trainer Sobha Rani brings forth gentle yoga exercises for senior citizens who are not actively mobile. So hop on and follow the yoga poses shown in the video below.
8. Helps Reduce High Blood Pressure with Relaxing Yoga Asanas
Almost all of us know one of the most relaxing yoga asanas is the savasana or the corpse pose. Two studies published in reputed journals compared the effects of savasana with simply lying on the couch.
They found that participants who practiced savasana experienced a 26-point drop in systolic blood pressure (the higher reading) and a 15-point drop in diastolic blood pressure (the lower reading). Blood pressure is one of the risk factors for deteriorating heart health.
This yoga day, reap in this unique benefit of yoga for good health.
9. Helps Prevent Digestive Discomforts with Twisted Yoga Poses
ga asYoga asanas can help clear digestive discomfortsStress is one of the principal factors which increases the severity of ulcers, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome among other digestive problems.
One of the benefits of yoga is to help reduce stress. In addition, yoga is like any other form of physical activity, so it helps to reduce constipation.
Although not proven, some yogis believe that the twisting yoga poses help in easing constipation and improves the efficiency of waste elimination. So practice from different yoga videos and stay gut healthy.
10. Condition your Heart with Yogic Poses
While some yoga asanas are also calming, if done vigorously or if you practice the more challenging Ashtanga yoga, then your heart rate can go in the aerobic zone.
However, studies have shown that yoga poses that do not jack up the heart rate in the aerobic zone still conditions the heart muscles.
Yoga has shown to lower the resting heart rate, increase endurance, and can improve the maximum oxygen uptake.
These are the signs of good aerobic heart muscle conditioning. No wonder many recommend yoga for health.
11. Gives you a Perfect Posture and Saves your Spine from Harm
Benefits of yoga extend to good posture and spine health too. Consider our head like a big heavy ball which is placed on an erect spine.
Because of this position, it reduces the load on the neck and back muscles. However, once you move it forward or backward, then it is a different ‘ball’ game.
Now do you get it why you feel tired after 8 straight hours of sitting? Not just that, certain yoga asanas and regular constant yoga practice provides a renewed flexibility that also helps keep the spinal discs supple.
Now you know how yoga is not just for weight loss but for holistic health. More reasons to do yoga!
International Yoga Day Quotes: Yoga is not about Touching Your Toes.
It’s about Unlocking Your Ideas about what You want,
Where You Think You can Go, And How will You Achieve when You get there.
So what are you waiting for, this International Yoga Day try on different yoga asanas and improve your health. Be it Iyengar yoga, Hatha yoga, or Ramdev yoga, practice any stream to get good health.
Our yoga for beginners and yoga for senior citizen videos will also help you in the same. So try yoga for health from today.