Yoga and Anxiety

8 Nov

Researchers at Boston University, USA. revealed that yoga elevates mood and decreases anxiety more than other physical activities. Scientists found a correlation between yoga postures, increased gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and decreased anxiety. As part of the study, there were different levels of GABA that correspond to yoga and practice common gait (walking). It was revealed that the volunteers who practiced yoga three times a week for 1 hour got improved mood and increased the level of GABA than the participants failed to start practicing. This discovery promises new perspectives for the treatment of mental disorders. Though GABA, if used as a drug can cause anxiety, wheezing or trouble breathing and trembling in the limbs, can be a natural source of healing. There are different types of yoga and all the types are effective to reduce anxiety.

On the other hand, Laughter yoga strengthens the immune system of patients with Alzheimer’s or cancer. Laughter Yoga (Hasyayoga) is a form of yoga employing self-triggered laughter. It also combines unconditional laughter with yogic breathing (PRANAYAMA). According to the agency told the Venezuelan therapist Erika Ruiz, ‘laughter therapy’ can be very effective for the Alzheimer patient. The benefits of laughter yoga are many.

  • Decreases blood pressure
  • Alleviates depression
  • Tones facial muscles
  • Strengthens the immune system
  • Promotes digestion
  • Better quality of sleep

Yoga can reduce, even in some cases completely cure, these conditions of psychosomatic origin through relaxing the nervous system and re-educating the body’s automatic responses to stress and anxiety. The yogis of India were the first to realize that mental immaturity and emotional instability are the main obstacles in the path of self-realization and overcoming it certainly depends on the person himself. Yoga has methods to know the inner  psyche, to understand it and to structure it properly. It has the techniques to achieve the unification of mind-body and harmonious coordination of all mental functions.

Techniques for managing stress and anxiety:

  1. Pranayama or control of vital energy through respiration
  2. Abdominal breathing
  3. Conscious and Deep Relaxation
  4. Meditation

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