Let’s do weight loss with yoga is an idea that has been there in the minds of millions of people nowadays. It’s mostly marketed by various yoga studios, some brands who love to associate themselves with yoga for good PR, and some other groups of people. But have you ever asked yourself if yoga helps in weight loss or is it just a marketing scam?
Before, I start I have something to say. I have observed quite often that people incline toward yoga just because they think that yoga requires less physical effort than normal cardio or weight training session and their purpose of losing weight is also been fulfilled. However, let me tell you here only that this is entirely false. One can easily burn as many calories as cardio through yoga and it requires almost the same efforts if you’re doing it appropriately.
Now, before we enter the debate of whether yoga can help in weight loss or not, let’s discuss some points about yoga first.
Weight loss with yoga, Why?
So, what are those things which started the initial spark for yoga in people’s minds? And how are these things related to weight loss?
- Yoga helps in better sleep – Yoga has always been a calming form of exercise. Be it mentally or physically. And guess what, if your mind and body remain calm, you will definitely have a good night’s sleep. A good yoga asana that will do exactly this kind of job for you would be Yoga Nidra.
- Yoga increases your awareness – “This process of constricting of the consciousness is seen as knotting, crumpling or rippling of the consciousness, in Hindu traditions. Knotting, crumpling and rippling is accelerated in humans due to imagination – imagined hungers and fears. The purpose of yoga is to unravel, unkot and uncrumple it. This leads to the expansion of the consciousness that makes us increasingly aware. Yoga is the technique used for this unravelling. Observation and awareness play a very critical role in the practice of Yoga.” I think these lines of this Economic Times post perfectly sum up this point.
- Yoga reduces stress – I think that now, this statement has become a well-established fact. It has been backed by various studies too. To be honest, no study was required to prove this “so-logical” thing. Because yoga involves relaxing postures and asanas which is precisely the opposite of stress, it was quite natural for it to be a stress-buster.
- Yoga improves metabolism – It can improve the metabolism of our body in many ways. Like while doing deep-breathing asanas, asanas involving a great deal of stretching and twisting, etc.
Now there are many other benefits too, but in this post, we are mainly concerned about these benefits only.
So, how do these benefits help in weight loss?
Let’s take each point one by one and see how these things help in weight loss.
The first thing which we discussed was sleep. So let’s start from there. You see, sleep has always been heavily linked with weight loss due to its impact on our hunger hormones, ghrelin and, leptin, namely. Leptin suppresses our appetite whereas ghrelin does exactly the opposite. Now more sleep means increased leptin and decreased ghrelin whereas with less sleep vice-versa happens.
The second point was about awareness. This is yet another important thing a person should have during his/her weight loss journey. If the person is more aware, he/she will wisely choose his/her meal options. They won’t consume much junk food and will ensure that they take appropriate amounts of food and water.
The third point was STRESS! And you see, the higher you have this stress in your mind and body, the more unlikely you’ll be able to lose weight. Because stress triggers a lot of hormones that oppose weight loss and even make your heart unhealthy. Like cortisol and adrenaline.
Last but not least was metabolism! Something which everyone wants to have high nowadays. As nobody wants to go outdoors and wants their body cells to spend their energy at rest. Moreover, due to high metabolism, people could even consume more calories and still maintain or lose weight. So as you can see, metabolism has a big impact on our weight. And the higher we have it, the better it will be for us to maintain our weight or potentially lose it.
As you might have observed till now, yoga is centred towards weight loss only. It creates all the favourable conditions for our body to lose weight!!
So far, we know that yoga will certainly be a big boost for our weight loss journey due to its ability to create many “weight-loss-friendly” conditions.
Don’t go away from the post now thinking that from tomorrow you’ll start doing yoga and will eventually lose weight after a month or two. That’s not what I meant in this post. I said clearly that it creates favourable conditions for weight loss and that it does help in it.
But I didn’t say that yoga alone can be responsible for your weight loss!!
Weight loss can’t be done only by following one type of exercise or a drink or a special juice that some people try to market. It’s kind of more complicated than that but it’s still easy to understand and implement. Read the below post to get full insight for weight loss!