The proven benefits of yoga
Researchers at Boston University School of Medicine discovered that practicing yoga may elevate gamma-aminobutyric (GABA) levels, a neurotransmitter produced in the brain. Low GABA levels are associated with depression and anxiety. Researchers discovered a 27pc increase in GABA levels in participants after just one session of yoga.
LOWER BLOOD PRESSURE
A study at the University of Pennsylvania found that patients who practiced yoga two to three times per week for 24 weeks experienced a higher drop in their blood pressure when compared to those that followed a specialised, blood pressure-reducing diet.
BETTER MEMORY & CONCENTRATION
Researchers at Wayne State University in Detroit discovered that a single session of Hatha yoga improved memory and concentration compared to more vigorous exercise.
A study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology found practicing yoga had the same effect on reducing cardiovascular markers as other forms of cardio exercise.
A study published in the International Society for Sexual Medicine showed that practicing yoga for one hour twice a week for 12 weeks increased sexual arousal in women who had metabolic syndrome (which tends to lead to a lower sex drive).
The American Journal of Managed Care reported that those performing restorative yoga (which is focused on relaxation and does not feature challenging poses) lost more subcutaneous body fat than those performing stretching exercises.
LESS LOWER BACK PAIN
A study in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that yoga relieves the symptoms of chronic lower back pain and leads to better back-related function and mobility.
RELIEVES SYMPTOMS OF ARTHRITIS
Yoga significantly improves the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis according to numerous studies.
REDUCED LEVELS OF INFLAMMATION IN CANCER SURVIVORS
The Journal of Clinical Oncology reported that breast cancer survivors that practiced yoga for three months lowered their inflammation levels by 10 to 15pc. (The participants attended twice-weekly 90-minute classes for 12 weeks.)