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Hatha Yoga Therapy for Obesity
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Forum Posts: 20
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April 27, 2015
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January 9, 2008 - 1:12 pm
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I am teaching Yoga to some new students. Kindly tell to me your information and ideas about how you would approach a group of obese students with yoga as therapy for weight reduction. Any help in this matter would be useful.

Kind Regards,

AS Kumar


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January 10, 2008 - 3:04 pm
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Namaskar AS Kumar,

My first suggestion would be that these students get their doctor's permission to practice yoga. Once they have permission to practice yoga, they should also be awre of all modifications. Chances are some of this group also has high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and heart conditions. Needless to say, they should be walking as much as possible too. They should make it a point to walk at least once per day.

The Sattvic diet (Yoga diet) is moderate enough for most, but not applicable to all. Allergies can change the food we eat and nobody is going to stick to a diet full of food they hate or have an allergy to.

One more thing to consider, Paul has a holistic weight control course for Yoga teachers. Inside he gives all kinds of information about execise, diet, attitude, motivation, etc.

Truthfully, his courses are so reasonably priced it is unbelievable and it sounds like you need a weight loss certification course designed for a yoga teacher. You can wait around for more answers on the forum, but if it was me, I would get the basic iformation down while i was waiting.

Om Shanti My Friend,



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May 8, 2008 - 2:25 pm
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Yoga and Weight Loss

Excess weight gain has become a phenomenon in today's age. The factors could be lifestyles, stress, emotional, wrong food habits, lack of exercise, thyroid problem etc. Its a fact that within yogas ability to create total well-being, lies its ability to reduce excess weight through burning calories, boosting metabolism and encouraging a healthy lifestyle.

Yoga is not a quick fix, but can be an excellent long-term holistic approach to loosing excess weight and keeping it off. Not only that, yoga creates many other positive changes: improves self-esteem, increases mental focus, reduces stress, promotes flexibility and increases strength and balance.

Yoga has a powerful stimulating and strengthening effect on the endocrine organs and thus can boost metabolism to burn more calories. The twisting and compressing of the yoga postures massage the internal endocrine organs regulating their function and improving local circulation. But even with yogas effect on metabolism, the age-old weight loss formula of reducing calorie intake and increasing calorie output is still important to follow.

Twisting poses, back bends, forward bends and inversions are used to stimulate the endocrine system and boost metabolism. If the weight gain is due to a hormonal imbalance poses that affect the thyroid in the neck will be helpful: camel, shoulder stand, rabbit, plow, and bridge.

Practicing the Sun Salutations will be especially helpful in boosting the body's metabolism as will moving quickly (vinyasa) between any series of poses. Do not attempt a fast paced vinyasa until you have achieved a basic understanding of the poses. Being significantly overweight may cause difficulty in forward folding poses and inversions, you may want to avoid or minimize these at first.

The standing poses, especially the warrior and lunging poses are used to strengthen and tone the muscles, build endurance, warm the body and increase caloric output.

The standing poses are empowering and grounding, and regularly practicing them increases self-confidence and self-esteem. Use Kapalabhati and Ujjayi Pranayama to help warm and energize the body and further boost metabolism. Practice Kapalabhati before or after your yoga practice, and use Ujjayi with vinyasa and holding yoga poses.

Incorporating a yogic diet and lifestyle will create a holistic weight loss program and positive long-term change. A modern yogic diet is high in fiber, whole grains, legumes and vegetables; and low in fat, animal protein and processed foods.

A yogic lifestyle encourages awareness and consciousness, compassion, self-knowledge, and the practice of the principles of right conduct and lifestyle of the yamas and niyamas. Yama, respect for others, includes nonviolence, truth, honesty, moderation, and noncovetousness. Niyama, positive self-action, includes purity, contentment, discipline, self-study, and devotion.


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May 10, 2008 - 8:38 pm
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I agree with the Yogic diet completely. It is true that the Yoga diet and Yogic life style is not a sudden, jolting, or crash diet. These crash diets seem to get short-term success, but alas they are long-term failures, and can endanger ones's health.

Over the long-term one will see the wonderful results of the Yogic way of life. Disease, pain, and ailments are reduced or eliminated due to Yoga practice and a Yogic diet.

Om Shanti,



Forum Posts: 14
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June 26, 2008 - 3:17 pm
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There are too many easy, quick, and cheap foods. All of these are bad choices that you can find at any drive thru. If your hungry it is easy to pull over to get take out for a burger, fries and a shake. To offset this, it would be best for most people to carry a trail mix that consists of dried fruit, nuts, and granola. There are some that have small chocolate or yogurt pieces too.

This will not carry you for more than an hour or two but by then you might be eating a healthy meal. The point is to have something that cuts the hunger until you can make a better choice at home. Most of us love to eat sattvic food, but not all the time. It is just too cooling of a diet in the winter time.

How many of you can exist on celery sticks and for how long? There are a few diehards, but I for one love to eat, so walking around with veggie sticks and hommus in my cooler all day is not an option.

Om Shanti,


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