Gentle Yoga and Weight Loss

Getting in touch with yourself

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Recently we posted an article encouraging you to sleep more if you wanted to lose weight. As someone who doesn’t like to exercise, I am all about simple, easy, lifestyle changes I can do that will help with the battle of the bulge. Imagine, my surprise when I came across an article on Prevention.com The Surprising Way Gentle Yoga can Help You Lose Serious Weight . I am all for anything that involves “gentle” and weight loss.

The conventional school of thought is that in order to lose weight you have to burn more calories than you take in. Yoga doesn’t work that way. A key focus in yoga is increasing mindfulness. According to the article: “Increasing mindfulness on the mat makes it easier to stay tuned in the rest of the day—which could translate into something as simple as realizing that your body is craving a walk or eating only when you’re hungry.”

Yoga helps you tune into the present moment and listen to your body. Focusing on the breath gives you a mechanism to control stress. This can lead to better food choices which overtime result in weight loss.

It is important to note this is not a magical 12 weeks program that will give you instant abs. “Overweight people who did yoga at least once a week for 4 or more years lost an average of 5 pounds, while those who didn’t practice packed on an average of 13.5—a difference of nearly 20 pounds.” Yeah, 4 years is a long time, but losing is better than gaining. “In another study, published last year in the Journal of Alternative Medicine, overweight men who practiced yoga and breathing exercises daily lost an average of 4 pounds in only 10 days.” That sounds more promising.

There are so many benefits to practicing yoga: increase flexibility, increase muscle tone, improved posture, better focus,improve your balance, and, of course, weight loss.  If you’re considering getting started in a yoga practice check out www.yogadownload.com for audio and video yoga classes, including a great collection of beginner classes you can do in the privacy of your own home.

Written by Myrtis Smith

African American. Female. Christian. Sometimes-Vegetarian.

Wife. Mother. Daughter. Sister. Friend.

Writer. Teacher. Zumba Enthusiast.