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Want To Improve Your Eating Habits? You May Try Yoga, Experts Say.

October 9, 2009 by  

Want to improve your eating habits? You may try yoga, experts say. According to a new study, yoga may help practitioners eat more mindfully, preventing them from overeating and reducing the risk of obesity.

Earlier research had suggested regular yoga practice may help prevent middle-age people from gaining weight and promote weight loss in those who are overweight.

In the new study, scientists from Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center found a significant link between yoga practice and mindful eating. They define the latter as being aware of why one eats and stopping when full.

The researchers explain that those who eat mindfully tend to weigh less than those who eat when not hungry or in response to stress.

Alan Kristal, an author of the initial study, says reasonable eating habits improve the typical approaches to weight loss, such as dieting, counting calories and limiting portion sizes.

"Adding yoga practice to a standard weight-loss program may make it more effective," he adds.

Kristal himself has practiced yoga for 15 years and says it cultivates mindfulness in many ways, including being able to hold a challenging pose with an accepting, calm mind and focus on the breath.

"[It] teaches how to maintain calm in other challenging situations, such as not eating more even when the food tastes good and not eating when you’re not hungry," he observes.
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