Learn how practicing yoga can lead to a healthy heart.
Yoga is so much more than a great way to tone and strengthen your body. It can help you beat stress and anxiety, make you feel more calm and balanced, ward off depression, and may even help maintain a healthy heart and cardiovascular system.
Yoga and Heart Disease Risk
According to a review of yoga and cardiovascular disease in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, yoga can help lower the risk of heart disease. The participants in these studies practiced different types of yoga, from gentle to more rigorous forms. The wide range of participants included young, healthy individuals as well as older populations with health conditions. Those who practiced yoga saw improvements in a number of factors that may help maintain a healthy heart, including weight loss, lower blood pressure and lower levels of “bad” cholesterol.
Benefits of Doing Yoga for a Healthy Heart
Yoga is a stress reliever – When you’re faced with a stressful situation, adrenaline is released into your body as a “fight or flight” response, which causes your blood pressure to rise and your heartbeat to accelerate. Constant stress can wreak havoc on the cardiovascular system, and those who are prone to having this type of reaction to stress have a higher risk for heart disease than more balanced, calm individuals. Specific breathing techniques and meditation are integral parts of any yoga practice. Research has shown that deep breathing and meditation can calm the nervous system, ease stress, and lower blood pressure, which is excellent for maintaining a healthy heart and boosting your overall health and well-being.
Yoga may also help decrease stress-related inflammation – Inflammation is another way your body may respond to injury and harmful situations. Although inflammation is part of your body’s immune response, it is also a risk factor for many conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke. Studies have shown that less inflammation could be one of the keys to a healthy heart. A study showed that when women who practiced yoga had lower amounts of a compound linked to inflammation.
Yoga can help regulate blood sugar levels – There are all types of yoga postures that gently stretch, stimulate and strengthen your muscles. When you exercise, muscles draw in glucose from the blood, lowering blood sugar levels. This makes the insulin in your body work better, which may also help prevent cardiovascular problems and allow you to maintain a healthy heart.
Yoga can keep you motivated – Certain types of yoga are less strenuous than conventional exercise like weight lifting or running. Poses can be easily modified to meet your specific needs and abilities, which make it the perfect activity for those who are new to exercise or have health problems that limit their ability to perform strenuous exercise. More and more healthcare providers and healing instructors are integrating yoga into their practices, especially for people who are recovering from a heart attack or surgery and for those who want to maintain a healthy heart.
Additional Benefits of Yoga
You may also find that the mind-body connection you develop when practicing yoga can lead to better sleep, a healthier diet, and increased energy and joy. If you’re new to yoga, start with a gentle or beginner class at a yoga studio in Palm Harbor. It’s especially important to start slow if you’re older than 65 or suffer from any medical conditions. Before you begin, talk with your yoga instructor about any injuries or conditions you may have. They can provide suggestions and help you modify poses that optimize the benefits of yoga that help support a healthy heart.
Contact East West Healing Solutions to Learn More about Yoga for a Healthy Heart
Ready to improve your overall well-being and maintain a healthy heart? Give it a try at our wellness studio that is home to one of the best yoga studios in Palm Harbor. Contact East West Healing Solutions at 727-216-3972 to learn more.