Through yoga, you can improve more than your fitness – you can also boost your heart health. Find out how yoga helps your heart health.
While yoga can help improve flexibility and balance, it can also help with cardiovascular health by promoting blood pressure, sleep, and more. “There are four distinct but interconnected areas in which yoga has specific benefits, not just for heart disease but any disease,” says Dr. Sat Bir Singh Khalsa, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, yoga researcher, and neuroscientist.
There are active forms of yoga, like power yoga and Vinyasa yoga, that are considered examples of moderate-intensity exercises under the federal exercise guidelines. Moreover, various forms help boost flexibility, balance, and muscle strength, which are essential for better physical fitness. In addition, yoga helps lower blood pressure through its deep, slow breathing techniques.
Stress is a common part of life, and yoga can help you manage it by building up your emotional resilience. When stress increases your heart rate and blood pressure, yoga activates the rest-and-digest response. As you regularly practice yoga, you’ll be able to improve your relaxation response and be less reactive to intense emotions.
According to a 2012 survey from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, over 80% of yoga enthusiasts claimed a reduction in stress. Moreover, almost two-thirds said they felt motivated to exercise more and four in 10 reported that they felt inspired to eat healthier.
“You’re more aware of the positive feelings you enjoy when you eat healthy foods and exercise,” says Khalsa. “You’re also more likely to notice the negative effects of eating junk food and sitting on a couch all day.”
“[People who practice yoga] have a different perspective on the meaning and purpose of their life, and their goals become less materialistic and more spiritual and charitable,” says Khalsa. In fact, some research suggests that having a higher sense of purpose in life may reduce the risk of cardiovascular problems.
Furthermore, some evidence suggests that combining yoga with a low-fat vegetarian diet, moderate exercise, and supportive relationships may shrink arterial blockages. In fact, Medicare has been reimbursing participants of the Ornish Lifestyle Medicine program since 2010.
Yoga can provide a multitude of benefits to your health and overall wellness. If you’re just getting started, look for a beginner class and work your way up. For the best results, find a class that includes the four pillars of yoga: postures, breathing practices, deep relaxation, and meditation.
In addition to yoga, you can give your health a boost through supplements like L-arginine Plus. Its ingredients effectively promote circulation, blood pressure, cholesterol, and more. Give your heart health the support it needs by including yoga in your routine and taking L-arginine Plus.