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Yoga combines exercise and meditation, making it an ideal fitness routine for everyone. It’s good for the body and mind — but many studies have proven some amazing benefits of yoga for women. For instance, it can make the skin more radiant and practicing can lead to a longer life. Learn the five unexpected merits of yoga, plus some lifestyle habits to make it more effective.
1. Prenatal Benefits
Yoga comes in various forms to suit every need and prenatal yoga is perfect for expectant mothers to help them throughout the labor. Some yoga poses, like those involving gentle stretching, can help them increase flexibility and get some low-impact movement.
Prenatal yoga is structured to provide general health advantages, from psychological to physical. By doing the poses, you can reduce stress and symptoms of depression, which are prevalent in many women after childbirth.
More importantly, it can also relieve labor pain. One study on 581 women found that doing yoga substantially decreased the pain felt by mothers during labor. It’s recommended for pregnant women.
Before jumping into doing the poses, ensure you get a green sign from your doctor confirming it’s entirely safe for you. While yoga is generally safe, you might have an underlying condition that makes it unfit for you.
2. Sharpens the Brain
One of the benefits of yoga for women is a healthier brain. According to Harvard Health, the brain changes when you do yoga. The brain networks improve connection with each other, leading you to develop a sharper memory and learning ability. Inclusively, this activity boosts multiple cognitive functions, such as thought, memory and awareness.
MRI scans found that yoga devotees had a thicker cerebral cortex — the part of the brain that processes information — and hippocampus — the region involved in memory and learning — than those who don’t practice it. Both brain areas reduce in size due to aging, but yoga practitioners showed less shrinkage than their counterparts.
If you want a healthy brain as you age, consider practicing yoga.
3. Makes Your Skin Glow
Radiant skin is one of the benefits of yoga for women who spend hundreds of dollars to fix skin problems. Yoga comes in as a chemical-free method to achieve healthy skin.
One of the causes of premature aging in women is stress. It can wreak havoc inside the body and manifest as wrinkles, fine lines and pimples.
Yoga is an effective method to reduce stress and improve any skin condition. Some poses, like forward bends and inversions, increase circulation to the face and head. It enables the blood to carry oxygen and nutrients all the way to the skin. At the same time, it clears waste products and carbon dioxide away from the skin and prevents the build-up of toxins responsible for the dull appearance.
In addition to traditional yoga, there’s also face yoga that targets problems in the face. Exercises engage various facial muscles to tighten and ease tension and boost circulation.
While yoga can undeniably boost skin condition, other lifestyle habits are as important in maintaining skin health. Find a way to add it to your daily routine so you can have glowing skin every day.
4. Increase Longevity
A longer life is one of the benefits of yoga for women and various studies confirm this. Harvard researchers reviewed 33 studies with yoga intervention that included 2,384 participants. The result found that doing yoga increased the walking speed and the ability of people over 65 to rise from a chair — both metrics indicate less frailty and increased longevity.
Researchers looked at factors that contribute to frailty and found balance problems, challenges with walking, brain decline and specific chronic conditions to elevate the scale. Yoga is a practice with multi-faceted health benefits and effectively minimizes causes of frailty in women.
5. Slows Aging
Similar to how yoga increases longevity, its anti-aging benefits are rooted in countering the deterioration due to old age. It includes the following:
- Reduced physical ability and flexibility
- Higher risk of chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases and diabetes
- Memory problems and brain decline
- Changes in the skin’s appearance
Most of these aging indicators arise because of oxidative stress, inflammation and the shortening of telomeres or the structures required for cell division. At some level, yoga can negate the impact of these problems and slow the aging process at a cellular level.
Yoga has been proven to reduce the anomalies of the mind that disrupt homeostasis, leading to uncontrolled aging. Mind-body interventions like yoga can reduce oxidative stress that accelerates cell aging. Moreover, it increases telomerase activity to maintain telomere length. Daily yoga practice can slow the aging process and promote general health.
Yoga and Lifestyle Changes
Making the benefits of yoga permanent is only possible if you combine it with positive habits. That’s why many women are drawn to the practice, as it encourages an overall lifestyle haul. Other things you can do are:
- Eat healthy foods: Good nutrition and yoga can increase immunity, support injury management and help fight chronic diseases. Consume more fruits and vegetables and skip processed foods and sugary beverages.
- Get enough sleep: Experts recommend 7 to 9 hours of sleep for general well-being. When you’re not tired, executing the poses and focusing on the practice is easy.
- Drink lots of water: Hydration is essential for proper body functions. You may sweat a lot when doing yoga, so ensure you replenish by drinking enough water.
- Quit smoking and moderate your alcohol intake: Smoking and alcohol in excess can deteriorate your health. You can drink alcohol moderately, but you must completely quit smoking. Don’t hesitate to get professional help if you need guidance on how to do so.
Yoga Is Beneficial for Women
Yoga is a low-intensity exercise perfect for women looking to integrate a less strenuous physical activity into their lifestyle. It’s beginner-friendly and doable at home with the help of online yoga lessons on video platforms.
Regardless of your reasons for starting yoga, the benefits of yoga for women are abundant. It can mitigate several health concerns and manage labor pain if you’re expecting a child soon. It also promotes skin health, protects your brain, slows aging and enables you to live longer. Yoga is more effective if paired with positive lifestyle habits.
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