More benefits to yoga it seems. Apparently, regular yoga practitioners are more mindful of their eating habits and tend to be slimmer overall than non-yogis, regardless of other physical activity and eating patterns. Just another reason to pick up the practice if your weight and good looks mean anything to you, not to mention all the other health benefits that come along with doing yoga.
Current research at the Frank Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle reports a link between yoga practitioners and “mindful eaters,” people who are better aware of their feelings of hunger and fullness and why they eat. This is in direct opposition to emotional eaters, binge eaters, nervous eaters and all other eaters that eat to soothe anxiety, depression or other mood swings. Although many of the studies participants were engaged in at least 90 minutes of walking or moderate and strenuous exercise, only regular yoga class participation was linked to mindful eating.
According to study leader, Alan Kristal, yoga challenges people to focus and accept their surroundings without judgment, key teachings that might encourage better discipline about eating. “This ability to be calm and observant during physical discomfort 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 says.
That may be true, but as a long-time yogi myself I’ll put it more simply: After busting my balls in a grueling hour-and-a-half yoga class, I am certainly NOT going to throw it all away by putting away an extra large pizza. But that’s just me. How’s that for yogic wisdom?