It is common knowledge that yoga is good for your body and mind, providing benefits such as greater flexibility, increased strength, and increased energy and mood. There is also growing evidence that it can be good for your heart.
Yoga practice, originated in India thousands of years ago, has been favored by some as an alternative to healthy their bodies. The researchers also found that patients in the yoga group had reduced inflammation and a better quality of life compared to patients in the control group. According to everydayhealth.com, Here are 5 benefits of yoga for heart health.
1. Yoga Gets You Moving, It’s Good for the Heart
Not getting enough exercise can lead to heart disease, the number 1 killer of both men and women in the United States, according to the American Heart Association (AHA). But it’s never too late to start. Research shows that people who do yoga are more likely to become active and adopt healthy eating habits, which can protect the heart. Young adults who practice yoga regularly report healthier eating habits and more hours of moderate to vigorous physical activity.
2. Yoga Helps You Relax
While researchers haven’t determined exactly how stress contributes to heart disease, stress can lead to increased behavior and other factors that increase the risk of heart disease. These include smoking, physical inactivity, overeating, and high blood pressure.
Studies show that yoga can help improve mental health, promote feelings of relaxation, and elevate one’s mood among people who practice it. Mind-body exercises help regulate the parasympathetic nervous system, the part of the nervous system that tells you to calm down.
A study published in August 2020 in Stress & Health showed that yoga classes with breathing exercises and meditation reduced perceived stress and increased attention in participants.
3. Yoga Can Lower Your Chances Of Getting High Blood Pressure
Yoga may play a role in managing prehypertension, according to a systematic review published in September 2021 in the Scientific World Journal. Researchers reviewed several studies that found meditation, and breathing exercises and yoga, lowered systolic and diastolic blood pressure (the top and bottom numbers on a blood pressure reading) in patients with prehypertension.
Although the review did not provide a structured “dose” of yoga poses and breathing techniques, the study authors concluded that yoga may help reduce the chances of developing high blood pressure or heart disease.
4. Yoga Can Calm Irregular Heartbeats
Atrial fibrillation, or afib, is an abnormal heart rhythm characterized by a fast and irregular beat that can lead to stroke and other complications. According to a study presented at the European Society of Cardiology Congress in 2020, practicing yoga can help people with afib manage their symptoms.
The study involved 538 participants from 2012 to 2017. For 12 weeks, participants did not do yoga, then for 16 weeks, they attended 30-minute yoga sessions each day, which included postures and breathing. Over a 16-week period, participants experienced a decrease in the number of episodes.
5. Yoga Introduces a Sense of Community
After a heart attack or other significant cardiac event, many patients may feel social isolation and may even develop depression. “Patients may not feel safe or strong enough to go outside,” says Dr. Ostfeld.
“They may face their death in a way that is new to them. Or they may start to realize that they may not be able to do all the things they used to do.”
Evidence suggests that yoga can help with that. A study published in January 2015 in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that participation in community programs that target cardiovascular risk factors and behavior change is associated with reduced mortality and hospitalization rates in rural areas of Maine.
That’s 5 benefits of yoga for heart health. May be useful.