Please enable Javascript in order to get HealCode functionality

Mindfulness Yoga and
Weight Loss Benefits

Mindfulness is the newest buzz word in the pursuit of better health. For months, newspapers, magazines, and TV shows have promoted the benefits of mindfulness.  But did you know that while mindfulness is being heralded as a “new” or recent trend, it's an ancient practice that has always been front and centre in the practice of yoga.

The practice of mindfullness in yoga challenges participants to focus on the present moment. Yoga promotes and develops mindfulness in a variety of ways. These include being able to hold a challenging physical pose while observing any discomfort in a gentle and non-judgmental way. You do this by being accepting, calming your mind and focusing on your breath.  Developing and nurturing this ability to be calm and observant during this physical discomfort will teach you how to develop a calm mind in other challenging situations that you may face during your day. Also, mindfulness can have a positive impact on your eating behaviour.

Curb Unhealthy Food Cravings

Researchers have discovered that people who ate mindfully often weighed less than those who ate mindlessly.  Often mindless eating is described as eating when not hungry or it can be eating as a response to anxiety, depression, or boredom.  Conversely, mindful eating is being aware of what you are eating, why you are hungry, and being able to stop eating when you are full. Researchers have discovered a strong association between practicing yoga and mindful eating. This relationship is not evident in other types of physical exercise including walking and running.

Mindful eating reduces weight gain as it interferes with unhealthy food cravings such as overeating, or bad food choices. This benefit is independent of the additional advantages of the physical activity aspect of practicing yoga. The focus of yoga is on the breath and body, and this key to its benefits. Increasing mindfulness while on the yoga mat makes it easier for those who practice yoga to stay tuned in and mindful during the rest of the day. The connection between your mind and body translates into realizing that your body is craving a jog or walk. It also influences your eating habits in that you only eat when you are hungry.

In summary, the practice of mindfulness in yoga can help promote weight loss by:

  1. Increasing your body awareness, especially in relation to hunger and satiety
  2. Developing effective stress management that will reduce the occurrence of stress eating
  3. Promoting mindful eating

Including yoga in your physical activity regimen for recovery and flexibility training as well as the practice of mindfulness.  Regular yoga practice will reduce stress and increase mindfulness and lead to improved eating habits, sleep, and self-awareness.

If you haven’t tried yoga before the first step is to get to a class and get to your mat.  Once you’ve done that, the hardest part is over, and you can look forward to the rewards of practicing mindfulness for your body and mind.

Located in the heart of Ancaster, Heron Creek Yoga offers more than 25 classes per week, for all kinds of real people from Restorative Yoga, to Beginner to Advanced Yoga.  Through our classes and coaching, we can work with you to help you improve your mindfulness and help you obtain your fitness and health goals.