Diabetes & Yoga

diabetes and yoga

Yoga

Yoga, a combination of physical, spiritual, and mental practices with Indian origins, is increasingly gaining popularity worldwide. It is a means of balancing the body, mind, and soul, and thus an important aspect in curing and controlling sedentary lifestyle conditions such as obesity and diabetes.

The benefits of yoga go beyond that. If practiced regularly with the help of a trained professional, it improves one’s body posture, helps in muscle building, stress management, helps in controlling blood sugar, etc, thus improving the overall quality of life.

Diabetes

Approximately 34.2 M people in the US are living with diabetes: a chronic lifestyle condition caused by insulin resistance, i.e., when the body cannot make enough insulin or use it efficiently. Over time, blood sugar levels go up, and if left unmanaged, results in chronic hyperglycemia and cardiovascular-related complications.

Also, glucose is the body’s major source of energy. When insulin is not working properly, the cells will not have enough energy. That is why most diabetes patients are always tired even after long periods of resting.

Can yoga help control diabetes?

The simple answer to this is, yes.

Yoga is a cost-effective way to manage diabetes and other sedentary lifestyle conditions. In fact, it is an emerging trend in the medical field since there is adequate proof of its healing power. Many patients suffering from different health conditions have found practicing yoga to be super beneficial.

Below are three ways in which a diabetes patient can benefit from practicing yoga.

  • Dietary management and mindful eating habits

Keeping up with a busy lifestyle often makes us overlook our own health and self-care. And so, yoga participation can help in that as it advocates for mindful eating practices such as incorporating more vegetables and fruits into your diet. Yoga practice also teaches the importance of regulating eating patterns. This then facilitates improvements in dietary intake, weight loss, and glycaemic control.

  • Controlling blood sugar levels through weight management.

Regular exercise is crucial to maintaining a healthy body. And diabetes patients are advised to incorporate at least 30 minutes of exercise in their daily routine to enhance weight loss.

While yoga is perceived as a slow exercise, it can be super helpful for type 2 diabetes patients. The several postures and stretches done during yoga practice help improve the sensitivity of beta cells and thus improving the production of insulin thereby increasing glucose uptake. Also, they can start with simpler exercises and advance to more rigorous thus promote steady weight loss.

  • Lowering stress levels.

Life can be stressful; everyday issues can add to emotional stress which has a detrimental effect on the body. Diabetes can cause additional stress. Yoga practice promotes relaxation and helps improve chemical balance in the brain thus reducing stress.

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