Yoga For Fat People

by Lisa Maharaj
(Trinidad)


I feel these yoga poses are very hard to do; I am a very overweight person. Would I be more healthy and lose weight with these yoga poses?

Answer

Yoga helps us to lose weight by improving health of the body, remove the toxins from the body and reducing stress. Yoga practice helps the body to regain strength and stamina, ensure proper functioning of all body organs. It helps to regulate our metabolism.

Yoga may not directly promote weight loss unless it is accompanied by self discipline, lifestyle changes and strict diet control. Advantage of yoga is that it improves mental and physical health and also significantly helps us to be more self disciplined, make lifestyle changes and following a strict diet control.

Is yoga a sufficient exercise for you to lose weight? If you are an expert yogi and practice yoga for more than an hour, yoga is an sufficient exercise to maintain ideal body weight. For example, in your case you are not able to do some of the asanas, you can add another physical activity like jogging, walking or any game to your daily routine. Get active and start moving your body.

Your Challenges


Strength and Flexibility. Yoga can benefit the obese by building strength, flexibility and balance. In addition, yoga positions are designed in a way that stimulates the glandular system, which invigorates and energizes the body. Yoga also revitalizes the nervous system and improves your cardio-respiratory health.

Healthy Eating. Eat only as much is required to survive and eat only healthy nutritious food. Unhealthy food loads your body with calories, loads your digestive system and leaves toxins in your body. Eat as per yoga diet principles. Controlling your food intake is the most important requirement for weight loss.

Stress. Stress and resultant emotional eating can be a significant factor contributing to weight gain. Yoga practice lower your stress levels and your quality of life improves.

Emotional Support. Low self esteem and lack of emotional support can lead to mindless eating. Yoga removes stress, anxiety and negative emotions and can improve your eating patterns.

Self Awareness. Yoga will improve your self awareness. Know about the needs of your body and know your physical fitness levels so as to avoid over exertion and avoid injuries. Look inwards and do not bother about what others may think of you, do not look outside for support. Do not become self conscious.

Self Discipline. Self discipline and strong determination is the key to long term weight loss and is the cheapest method of weight loss. Also, life becomes more disciplined when we are doing yoga regularly. For example, if you practice yoga in the morning and evening, your eating becomes more disciplined as you cannot eat 3 hours before yoga and at least 30 minutes after yoga. Do not eat after sunset.

Correct Breathing. Ensure that your breathing technique is correct. Pranayama practice especially kapalabhati pranayama helps promote weight loss.

Correct Sitting. Maintain correct sitting posture for pranayama or meditation. You can use a small cushion and place it behind you, as it helps elevate your hips up when sitting on the floor making it comfortable to sit on the floor.

Special Considerations


Adapt to Yoga. You have to adapt the various yoga poses as per your strength and flexibility. You can stretch only as far as possible and hold a pose only as long as is comfortable for you and repeat the pose 2-3 times. You must begin with few simple poses that you can do comfortably for 3-4 weeks and gradually increase the range of motion and the number of repetitions. Once you gain confidence you can attempt difficult poses. You can visit an experienced yoga teacher or adapt this generic beginners yoga sequence for your requirements.

Multiple Sessions If you do not have the strength to go through one hour class, divide your practice in two, three sessions and have adequate rest between the sessions.

You have to include the following in your yoga practice
~Yoga Asanas
~Pranayama
~Meditation
~Diet Control

Hope this helps
Daljit

References
Yoga for weight loss
Yoga diet
Yoga breathing



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