Many people have lost weight in a healthy way with the help of yoga. However, many experts claim that doing yoga alone would not help them lose weight. When yoga is paired with a balanced diet, it will help you lose weight. It will also keep your mind and body in good shape. It improves your mindfulness and your relationship with your body.
Stress has a negative impact on both body and mind. Pain, anxiety, insomnia, and an inability to focus are all symptoms of stress. The most common cause of weight gain is stress. Yoga may help you deal with stress and depression by promoting relaxation (1). In addition, you will try to change your lifestyle by adding more nutritious foods rather than binging on junk food.
The physical benefits of yoga, combined with stress control, aid in weight loss. It may help in the maintenance of good physical and mental health.
One of the reasons yoga asana makes you feel so good is that it stimulates your parasympathetic nervous system. Thanks to two elements that almost all yoga asana practices have in common – musculoskeletal lengthening and strengthening and steady breathing. These lead to overall better health.
Benefits of Yoga:
Healthy eating and exercise are two important components of weight loss. These elements are essential, along with yoga poses, to lose weight. Yoga is more than just a series of strengthening poses. It has a lot of advantages, including:
- Greater adaptability
- Improved breathing
- Increased vitality and energy
- Balanced metabolism
- Improved athletic performance
- Improved muscle tone
- Better cardiovascular health
- Loss of weight
- Stress reduction
A recent study comparing the benefits of yoga and exercises reveals that yoga may be more effective at improving a variety of health-related outcomes compared to exercises. (2)
A study was done to ascertain if yoga could help adolescents in secondary school with their mental well-being. The findings indicate that yoga is appropriate and practical in a secondary school setting. It has the potential to play a protective and preventive role in improving mental health. (3)
Yoga is a spiritual, emotional, and physical discipline that has been practiced for thousands of years. People have discovered a range of health benefits associated with yoga over time. Yoga is an exercise that includes body and mind.
Practicing yoga asanas will help you improve your posture while preventing neck and lower back pain. Yoga can aid in the strengthening of the body’s weak muscles. It aids in muscle toning, which helps in avoiding muscle strain.
How Yoga helps in Weight Loss
Yoga can help with weight loss by reducing stress. In addition, consistent yoga practice encourages a balanced lifestyle, making it more likely that you’ll be able to sustain your weight loss. Most importantly, yoga helps with behavioral improvement by listening to the body first. It can also be beneficial for people who have previously tried to lose weight.
Yoga may assist you in reducing your food intake. As a result, you become more conscious of the negative consequences of overeating.
Yoga interventions reduce obesity-related outcomes like BMI, body weight, body fat, and waist circumference. However, it’s unclear if this is due to increased physical activity and lean muscle mass or changes in eating habits. This research aims to learn more about the experience of losing weight through yoga. (4)
Yoga inspires people to live a healthy lifestyle. You’ll lose weight quickly if you incorporate yoga into a workout routine that involves calorie-burning cardio exercise.
Yoga Poses to lose weight
Many fat-burning yoga poses will help in boosting your metabolism and fat breakdown. By practicing these poses every day, you can start getting visible results in as little as three weeks. Just make sure that you set aside time to practice this daily and keep yourself motivated enough to never miss a day of practice. Always try to do these asanas on an empty stomach early in the morning for the best results.
1. Surya Namaskar
The Surya Namaskar or the sun salutation is in itself is a comprehensive body exercise. It comprises 12 different poses. When Surya namaskar is repeated multiple times in a flow, it tones the muscles in the body. As a beginner, you can start with a couple of repetitions of the Surya namaskar and slowly build up both the count and the tempo for fantastic results.
2. Warrior pose or Virabhadrasana
This is an asana that adds grace to your movements and helps you tone your hamstrings, thighs, and legs
- Stand with your feet 3-4 feet apart on the ground
- Raise your arms to parallel to the ground to shoulder height
- Move the right foot by 90 degrees
- Bend your right knee while breathing out
- Turn your head towards your right
- Stretch both your arms and legs further
- Hold this pose for about a minute
- Repeat on the other side.
3. Cobra pose or Bhujangasana
The cobra pose or the Bhujangasana helps in toning your upper arms, hips, and chest. It also helps your body get the optimum amount of fresh oxygen, which helps burn fat.
- To do this, lie flat on your stomach, your toes touching the ground
- Your hands must be tucked under your shoulders
- Inhale and lift the chest off the ground using the force of your arms
- Waist down; the body must be firmly planted on the ground
- Hold this pose for half a minute and release it back to the floor with an exhalation
4. Bow pose or Dhanurasana
The Bow pose or Dhanurasana is a slightly advanced pose that helps burn fat and ton the stomach. This asana will help you get rid of belly fat.
- Lie on your stomach
- Keep your feet slightly apart
- Now fold back your knees
- Hold your ankles with your hands
- Inhale and lift your chest off the ground
- Hold the pose and breathe deeply
- Release the pose on an exhalation
- Relax your body before repeating
5. Utthita Trikonasana
When we focus on the chest and stomach in other poses, one part we forget is the hips, and the love handles. The side bends help in dealing with the love handles.
- Stand with your feet apart on the ground
- Raise your hands parallel to the floor
- Now turn your right foot 90 degrees
- With your right hand, reach down and hold the right ankle
- The left hand is raised upwards
- Hold the pose for 30 seconds and feel the stretch in your hips
- Repeat on the other side.
6. Parivrtta Utkatasana – Twisted Chair pose
Yoga’s variant of the squat is also known as the Parivrtta Utkatasana. However, you should be aware that it is a little more strenuous and tones the abdominal muscles while working the quads and glutes. The lymphatic and digestive systems are both supported by this asana. It’s a fantastic way to shed pounds.
7. Locust Pose (Shalabhasana)
It is an intermediate backbend pose that stretches your entire back and improves your back’s flexibility and strength. This pose stretches your back and chest while also making you feel more energized. In addition, it activates the body’s internal organs and improves blood circulation.
When to Perform Yoga
The best time to practice yoga is in the morning before breakfast. So wake up early in the morning and freshen up, take a shower if you want, and then start your day with your yoga routine.
Stretching with yoga is best performed after a workout. This is because you can really stretch all of the muscles you just worked on. This will help you heal quicker and bring your heart rate back down, helping you to be more relaxed once again.
A Diet with Yoga for Better Results
- Drink detox drinks as a part of your routine
- Include fresh fruits and whole grains in breakfast
- Space between meals
- Eat a lot of lentils, and cooked vegetables like carrots, beets, sweet potatoes, or pumpkin for dinner
Study reveals yoga practitioners who eat a vegetarian diet tend to value yoga as a way of life rather than a treatment
Side Effects of Yoga:
A national cross-sectional survey was done to check the adverse effects of yoga. It was observed that one out of every five adult yoga practitioners experienced at least one acute adverse effect. One out of every ten experienced at least one chronic adverse effect, predominantly musculoskeletal symptoms (common symptoms include pain, weakness, stiffness). (5)
When you disregard your body’s warning signs and try to stretch beyond your established limits, you will overstretch. Stretch to the point where you feel a soft tug, not a hard tug. It’s a safe idea to work under the instruction of a professional trainer to stay away from getting these injuries.
The three most common negative effects recorded in a study were soreness and discomfort, muscle injuries, and fatigue. In addition, the ocular pressure rises in few yoga positions in inversions like Headstand and Shoulder-stand. This may cause problems such as eye disorders.
Inversion poses and forced breathing can also raise blood pressure. In addition, certain advanced yoga techniques, such as Breath of Fire, may lead to high blood pressure. It is more common in patients suffering from hypertension.
Over-aggressive Forward Folds can irritate your spine’s fragile disks, particularly those in your lumbar spine. You might have a serious spinal injury if you round your back too much or try to go too far before you’ve warmed up.
Yoga, an Indian method of mind-body rejuvenation, has tremendous benefits for all people. It can be done by obese people looking to lose weight to those looking to relax. Yoga is a centuries-old practice that can get you a toned, balanced body and a stress-free mind. It not only helps with weight loss but also encourages physical and emotional well-being. Yoga can also aid in the toning of muscles and the improvement of metabolism. Practice these yoga poses and achieve a healthy and active lifestyle by losing weight.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How much weight will yoga help you lose?
It varies from person to person and is determined by various factors, including the kind of asanas, duration, eating habits, and medical conditions.
Is it possible to lose belly fat with yoga?
Yes, yoga will help you get rid of belly fat. Basic stretches and asanas (such as Surya Namaskar) will assist in the reduction of belly fat.
Is power yoga a good way to lose weight?
Yes, it will help you lose weight. On the other hand, Hatha yoga is advised because it is more effective in the long run. People with medical problems should avoid performing power yoga.
- “Yoga for anxiety and depression” – health.harvard.edu
- “The Health Benefits of Yoga and Exercise: A Review of Comparison Studies” – liebertpub.com
- “Evaluation of the mental health benefits of yoga in a secondary school: a preliminary randomized controlled trial” – pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
- “A Different Weight Loss Experience: A Qualitative Study Exploring the Behavioral, Physical, and Psychosocial Changes Associated with Yoga That Promote Weight Loss” – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
- “Adverse effects of yoga: a national cross-sectional survey” – biomedcentral.com