Weight loss is a decrease in one’s body weight that results from voluntary circumstances (such as diet, exercise) or from involuntary circumstances (such as illness, cancer, malabsorption, inflammation).

However, most instances of weight loss arise due to the loss of body fat, with severe and extreme cases resulting in the loss of muscle, protein and other bodily substances- which can also all too easily be depleted.

When it comes right down to whether yoga can help you lose weight, it really is a balancing act of energy in versus energy out. Your body is not stupid. It will burn a set amount of calories every day, which is known as your basal metabolic rate.

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If this number and the amount of calories that you burn off during your activity add up to more than the calories that you consumed for the day, then of course you will lose weight.

However, if you consume more calories than you burn, than obviously you are going to gain weight rather than lose.

Yoga certainly can help with weight loss if you pair it with caloric reduction. However, yoga is not the most effective means to lose weight or burn calories on a per hour basis.

Lifting weights, incorporating HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), and including endurance activities will help to burn more calories than yoga will.

However, the health and psychological benefits that yoga offers that the other exercise modalities cannot are incredible and include:

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– Flexibility: improving ROM (range of motion) throughout your muscle and joints;

– Strength: certain yoga poses require slow movement, precise breathing, and incredible core strength;

– Pain & Injury Prevention: certain yoga poses will help to improve and restore alignment and posture, helping back pain and spinal compression;

– Better Breathing Practices: yoga will consciously teach you how to effectively focus on your breath, which affects the amount of oxygen that gets into your brain and muscles.

– Calmed Mental State: slow bodily movements help with bringing a new sense of peace;

– Stress Reduction: focusing on the yoga movements will help to relieve bodily stress and keep one’s mind in a healthy state, eliminating any contributing weight gain factors;

– Mind-Body Harmony: practicing yoga can lead to mindfulness, helping to connect the mind and body self-awareness factor.

Therefore, doing yoga will definitely help with weight loss, but isn’t a complete solution to weight loss. Rather, it is a healthy addition with many positive health benefits- both physically and mentally.

Incorporating it into one’s weight loss plan will only increase success rate of losing weight and practicing healthy habits.

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