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  • Kristen Fewel

Yo! Research shows increase in beneficial neurochemical GABA with yoga

Question: Can you benefit from yoga even when you're not "doing" it?

Research says "Yes!" Because the following benefits occur not only when you are doing yoga, but there are cumulative effects when an appropriate practice is done over time.

1. Yo, GABA! Yoga raises the levels of the brain chemical GABA, related to lower incidence of depression. []

2. Release less of a tension-triggered cytokine, a protein associated with inflammation. [Ohio State University article]

3. Lower blood pressure. ["Twelve weeks of [hatha] yoga produces clinically meaningful improvements in 24 hour systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure." from the Journal of Clinical Hypertension], 2016]

In addition to these clinically significant benefits, you will also experience an inner and outer harmony that can also be attributed to the practice. As your body and mind work more in harmony, notice how your perspective changes on issues of the past. I encourage you not to dwell on the issues, but to notice if your practice has made it easier to see what really was the issue, and how a "go with the flow" attitude can help let things fall into place-- even when they're not perfect, because let's face it, nothing needs to be perfect for life to be good!

Yoga perhaps cannot break the space-time continuum, but these combined effects can help make you a well-balanced person in harmony with your work, relationships, and your health-- so that's yoga working for a better future! Put the plan in place to make yourself a priority, and see how the people around you are more in harmony with you and the energy you bring to the party!

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