Yoga & Your Health

Practicing yoga and mindfulnessWhen life gets crazy, it’s easy to set aside personal health goals. Yet, that’s when the mind, body and spirit need TLC the most. Mindfulness and meditation, mixed with a little gentle yoga, can help bring life back into balance.

“If I could put all the benefits of meditation and exercise into a pill, I would,” said Dr. Ancy Maruthanal, an internal medicine physician and Club W’s medical director. “Nothing makes me happier than a patient who is able to stop taking diabetic or high blood pressure medications because of lifestyle changes.”

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Reduced stress, better sleep and improved relationships are a few of the mental and emotional health benefits you can gain from practicing meditation, mindfulness and deep breathing techniques every day. “Happiness is another benefit,” Dr. Ancy added. “Mindfulness makes you grateful for what is around you, and with gratitude comes happiness.”

Regular yoga practice adds a physical element to the mix. It’s a fantastic way to strengthen your core, and the poses incorporate deep breathing, which helps relax muscles, blood vessels and the heart. Yoga also emphasizes the use of mindfulness to achieve various patterns of breathing and poses.

Make It a Habit

“Practicing mindfulness, meditation, deep breathing and yoga take dedication and a time commitment,” Dr. Ancy acknowledged. “I incorporate yoga into my morning routine. Much like showering and brushing my teeth, I don’t leave home without exercising. You have to make it a priority; otherwise, it’s easy to skip out.”