People do yoga for many reasons, however, it’s never been the go-to for weight loss. I’m about to bust that, and explain how yoga actually helps you lose weight, if that’s what you’re going for, of course!
First, yoga lowers stress. Yoga calms down the sympathetic nervous system, leading to reduced chronic and acute anxiety. Research has proven that people who regularly practice yoga have more brain cells in areas that increase focus, regulate stress, and promote self-awareness.
Sooo….people under high stress typically crave junk food. Thus, less stress means less unhealthy cravings!
The stress-lowering effects of yoga also decrease levels of cortisol, a stress hormone that promotes belly fat and fat storage in general.
Second, yoga has been proven to ward off depression symptoms, making you more happy when you’re doing yoga. Happier people are proven to be more active, burning more calories than depressed or unhappy people per day.
Third, research has shown that regular yoga practice improves quality of sleep. Sleep deprivation is linked to weight gain and decreased levels of leptin, which suppresses appetite. Therefore, yoga improves sleep quality, increasing leptin, suppressing appetite for high-calorie food!
Last, yoga makes you more mindful. Similar to increased self-awareness, yoga helps you slow down and pay attention to your actions. Regular yogis slow down and pay attention to how their food tastes and smells, making them eat less and have fewer cravings than those who don’t, according to research in Appetite.
All these factors form a chain-reaction that makes yoga change your way of living, warding off excess fat. The best part about this form of weight loss is that it’s a lifestyle change, not a quick fix. Yoga affects your hormones naturally, which controls cravings and habits in a sustainable, healthy way.