Yoga is an ancient technique of both relaxation and exercise that affects both physical and mental health. Yoga has originates from in the East, but it has been transferred to western countries because of its proven beneficial effects. Furthermore, western scientists became more interested in exploring the possibilities that yoga can offer, so there have been many studies designed specifically to investigate the features of different yoga techniques. Here are some of the proven health benefits that yoga can offer.
Effects Of Yoga On Mental Health
Several recent studies have shown the improvement in patients with various types of depressive disorders who practiced yoga regularly. One of the problems arising in the treatment of depressive patients is the motivation to undergo the treatment process. The tricky part is that yoga must be practiced and it requires focusing on the instructions, which may be difficult for persons with depressive disorders. In any case, many patients suffering from depression succeed in finding relief from their symptoms while practicing yoga.
Chronic fatigue is one of the most common debilitating issues among people from developed countries. Furthermore, patients with chronic diseases, such as cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and neuromuscular disorders often suffer from this condition. Yoga has been found to increase energy and lower the symptoms of chronic fatigue, both in healthy individuals and in persons with chronic diseases.
Persons with a distinct form of disorders related to stress, called posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can also benefit from practicing yoga regularly. This disorder often appears after wars, terroristic attacks, natural disasters, and other stressful events. Researchers have recently found that practicing yoga from one week to six months can significantly improve the symptoms of PTSD.
In general, everyday stress can be very well managed by yoga techniques combined with various meditation techniques.
Effects Of Yoga On Physical Health
Yoga has been proven as an efficient method for improving physical fitness. Not only that different positions of the body strengthen different muscle groups, but they also provide a beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system by increasing blood flow to the large muscle groups. Furthermore, breathing techniques used in yoga allow better oxygenation of the blood.
Studies have shown that persons with cardiovascular diseases can have significant improvement of their condition by practicing yoga regularly. This is especially true for persons with high blood pressure. Patients with ischemic heart disease (angina pectoris) are good candidates for yoga, because it is not a very strenuous activity, and yet provides a great benefit for the narrowed coronary blood vessels.
Short-term positive effects of yoga have also been noticed in patients suffering from diabetes mellitus. In order to examine long-term effects, larger randomized studies should be conducted.
Besides these conditions, yoga is also helpful for chronic pain management, migraines, spine-related conditions, and even cancer. Nobody knows exactly the mechanism by which yoga affects all kinds of different medical conditions, but further research focused on this ancient technique will surely reveal more. For now, we can say that practicing yoga is both safe and beneficial for healthy individuals, as well as for persons with various medical conditions.
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