You’ll eat more mindfully.
The more people practise yoga, the less likely they are to eat when they’re sad, stressed, bored or full. You’re also more likely to savour meals, which increases the feeling of satisfaction after eating.
You’ll gain self-control.
The meditation component of yoga can help strengthen the brain’s anterior cingulate cortex, the region associated with self-regulation and impulse control. This makes you more inclined to make better choices when facing health-related decisions, such as what to eat or whether to exercise.
You’ll reduce stress.
Practising yoga lowers your body’s built-in stress response, so you’re less likely to store extra kilojoules as belly fat. When German researchers put 40 women with abdominal obesity on a 12-week yoga regimen, their abdomens shrank nearly 4cm
(1.5 inches), even though none of the participants changed their diet.
You’ll gain more self-compassion.
Those who regularly practise yoga are less critical of and more at peace with their bodies, which makes them more likely to take good care of themselves.
(Discover more yoga moves to feel calmer in the April/May issue of Prevention!)