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Yoga As An Aid To Weight Loss
Roy Thomsitt

Learn how a yoga practice can help you lose weight by increasing your metabolism.

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Yoga is wonderful for nurturing a state of mental and physical well being . It promotes a balanced and healthy lifestyle, and yoga techniques can be applied also to removing excess weight, thus bringing you an extra benefit, that is if being overweight is a problem to you.

Practicing yoga will increase your metabolism. An increased metabolism leads to an increase in the calorie burning process, so combining yoga with a calorie burning program may bring you excellent results. Of course, the use of yoga is no rapid weight loss method. Used over a period of time, though, it can bring good results. If you keep to the rigors imposed by yoga discipline, you should gain a holistic, long term solution to balance your life style and help you reduce and prevent any surplus weight. In addition to losing weight, you will also experience an increased ability to concentrate and focus, higher resistance to stress factors, and overall a healthier way of life.

Let me just explain a little more about how yoga will benefit you. Your metabolism is regulated by the thyroid, a component of the endocrine system. The thyroid is responsible for the chemical processes in your body that transform food into energy. Yoga uses a series of twisting poses that stimulate the work flow of the internal organs, thus boosting metabolism. This in turn burns more calories, and reduces your body weight. Improved local blood circulation is another direct effect of the use of yoga postures, which leads to a healthier, more energetic body. When the calorie intake is lower than the calorie output, your body will start burning fat cells to acquire the necessary energy. A perfectly healthy and strong metabolism takes this process even further, and you may well see better results than traditional weight loss formulas.

To stimulate metabolism, various back bends and forward bends are used. Poses that affect the neck area, where the thyroid gland is situated, are particularly helpful if the weight problem is caused by a hormonal imbalance. These poses can be those of the camel, rabbit, plow, bridge and shoulder stand. Moving quickly between a series of poses can accelerate the process. To those who are well overweight, some of the bends may prove to be a difficult. If you fall into that category, don't despair. You should gradually increase the difficulty of the postures until you have the confidence to go to more complex exercises. This is not a test or a competition; you need to be relaxed and at ease, and just do what you can. Each time, you will probably find it that much easier, and you can do a little more.

To strengthen muscles, you use standing poses, such as the warrior. The use of standing poses will aid a higher level of endurance, and an increased caloric output. You may energize the body and increase your metabolism even more by using Kapalabhati and Ujjayi Pranayama.

A good diet should also be followed to support this holistic weight loss system. You should try to eat foods that are rich in fiber, vegetables, fruit, whole grains, while eating less high fat and processed food items. Balance is essential in all matters concerning your diet. variety is good, as is modest consumption.

A gradual approach is essential with all yoga practices. Do not expect results to be spectacular and immediate, but this is one of the best long term weight loss methods available. In addition to weight loss, you can also benefit from an increased protection against adverse factors through your improved immune system and sense of well being. Hopefully, too, you will feel an inner peace that will assist you in losing weight without succumbing to all the pressures and temptations.

Roy Thomsitt is owner and part author of http://www.routes-to-self-improvement.com