One more study tells the world, that Yoga can help with weight control and weight loss. The latest study was held by the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington.
The study involved 15,500 healthy, middle-aged, men and women. This is a group that typically has difficulty with weight loss, since the number of calories needed declines, and the energy levels needed to burn calories, is not what it used to be.
Unfortunately, this is a fact that I have become painfully aware of during the past few years, and cutting back on food was my unwanted last option. Although, I cross train almost daily, it took me one year to lose 16 pounds of extra weight.
Back to the study: Yoga practice was defined as practicing at least 30 minutes once a week for four or more years. Comparatively speaking, this is truly "bare minimum," and many Yoga teachers used to say that this amount of Yoga will do nothing.
How times change; Yoga has been keeping people fit for approximately 5,000 years, and its many health benefits are still a mystery worthy of more studies.
Alan R. Kristal, Dr.P.H., the study's lead author at Hutchinson Center's Public Health Sciences Division said, "Men and women who were of normal weight at age 45, and who regularly practiced Yoga, gained about three fewer pounds during that 10-year period than those who didn't practice Yoga."
Until all the studies are in, it would be safe to say that adding Yoga practice to your weekly routine, and eating wisely, will contribute to weight control or weight loss.
When seeking a Yoga teacher, find one who is compassionate, yet will encourage you to practice more frequently. The results you will gain from regular practice, of three to four Yoga classes per week, will be extraordinary, especially, if you practice Yoga for years.
Yoga is very low impact - in comparison to many aerobic exercise routines, and can be practiced for longevity. Your knees, spine, hips, and shoulders, will thank you for the condition Yoga will keep them in. Many of today's "standard" forms of exercise do not have the same "bragging rights," as Yoga.
With respect to eating, take the time to identify hunger and cravings. You will notice that they are not the same thing. Being a chocolate lover, it is much better to eat a piece of chocolate, now and then, than to buy a dozen chocolate donuts. This is not to justify, or surrender, to chocolate, but to eat it in moderation, and not every day.
Based upon what I have said so far, it is all about identification, control, and moderation. We have to stop "mindless eating" habits.
Recently, researchers found that women who received a 1200 mg. calcium supplement, on a daily basis, reduced their number of premenstrual food cravings by 54%.
On another note: When you have anxiety, your body produces more of the hormone cortisol, which may increase the volume of carbohydrates you eat. Carbohydrates temporarily increase our levels of serotonin, making us feel relaxed for the short term.
Learn the art of substituting foods for more nutritionally dense variations. I cover this, in detail, in my eBook, "14 Days to Change Your Life," which will be released in August 2005.
Being in the best shape you can be is also connected to positive thinking. Therefore, use self-improvement sources to keep you on the right track toward optimum health.
Paul Jerard, is a co-owner and the director of Yoga teacher training at: Aura Wellness Center, in North Providence, RI. He has been a certified Master Yoga teacher since 1995. He is a master instructor of martial arts, with multiple Black Belts, four martial arts teaching credentials, and was recently inducted into the USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame. He teaches Yoga, martial arts, and fitness to children, adults, and seniors in the greater Providence area. Recently he wrote: Is Running a Yoga Business Right for You? - for Yoga students, who may be considering a new career as a Yoga teacher. http://www.yoga-teacher-training.org/index.html