Often than not, life can get busy and stressful – leaving no room for one to maintain an active lifestyle. There just doesn’t seem enough time in the day for you to grab your trainers and head off to the gym. However, you don’t need to carve out an hour of your day to keep fit. In fact, just giving yourself 15 minutes to practice yoga is all you need to protect your health.
An ancient discipline hailing from ancient India, yoga is a great tool to keep both your mind and body calm and healthy. Regardless of how busy and hectic life gets, if you’re going to practice at least one exercise a day, it might as well be yoga. That said, read on to find out what putting 15 minutes aside a day can do for your overall health.
Benefits of daily yoga
Aids weight management
Yoga is a great toning exercise and, as a result, it helps to speed up your metabolism. This then forces the body to burn fat, which can then lead to weight loss.
Additionally, it also helps to relieve stress and a few of us are guilty of indulging in the wrong comfort foods. Instead of eating healthy comfort foods, some of us choose to turn to chocolates and ice cream to ease our stress levels. As a result, we’re soon packing on some unwanted pounds. However, according to a study published in The American Journal of Managed Care, those who partook in a form of yoga that was focused on stress relief ended up losing some weight.
An essential part of the yoga discipline is the ability to breathe properly.
Poor breathing can affect your ability to concentrate as well as your sleep. By practicing yoga every day, you’ll improve your breathing and this will increase lung capacity. This will then ensure that your body gets enough oxygen to stay healthy.
Moreover, those battling respiratory problems may benefit as the discipline helps to ease the symptoms associated with asthma (1).
Boosts your energy
If you feel yourself battling with the afternoon slump, instead of grabbing another cup of coffee, rather grab your yoga mat.
Practicing yoga can provide you with that energy boost that you need to get through the rest of the day. By increasing blood flow and encouraging breathing work, yoga is a great natural way to get your energy going.
Improves both flexibility and posture
Yoga involves a lot of stretching and over time, you’ll notice your muscles become stronger and your flexibility will also improve.
Also, as our desk jobs can affect our spines and leave us with poor posture – coupled with backaches and pains – practicing yoga is a great way to improve your posture. In doing so, back and neck pains will be alleviated, you’ll have fewer headaches, and you will also have improved muscle function.
Improves your mood
Exercise has been linked to improved mood and yoga is no different.
According to a study published in the journal Ancient Science, yoga can help to boost your mood by stimulating the release of feel-good neurotransmitters. It appears that the higher the levels of these neurotransmitters are, the lower the levels of depression and anxiety.
Protects heart health
Heart disease is the number one cause of mortality worldwide which is why it’s important to adopt a lifestyle that serves to protect your heart health.
Yoga helps to reduce the risk of heart disease by encouraging blood circulation, lowering high blood pressure, and even reducing the levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol (2).
Reduces stress levels
In the fast-paced life that we live, it’s normal to find ourselves stressed. However, your health can suffer if this stress becomes chronic. This is why it’s important to find ways which you can manage your stress levels, without compromising your health.
As mentioned, yoga is a great stress-relieving tool. It incorporates meditation and breathing exercises which help to reduce the levels of the stress hormone cortisol. In doing so, your stress levels are lowered and there is no longer a risk of your health being affected.