Yoga & Happiness — Boost Your Mood With Yoga!

by | Feb 15, 2016

Yoga relieves stress and boosts mood

While all forms of activity are beneficial for your mental wellness, there is something special about yoga. If you find that you can’t relax during other forms of exercise, yoga is the ideal choice of activity. Stress often contributes to depressed mood, but research shows that yoga can effectively reduce stress and anxiety. This has a positive effect on your body, reducing the symptoms associated with stress, so your pulse, blood pressure and breathing rate all lower, helping your body cope better with stress. Yoga also seems to improve symptoms such as low energy levels, poor sleep and pain that often go with low mood and anxiety. Additionally, research shows that yoga triggers an even greater release of mood-enhancing brain chemicals than other types of activity. By managing stress and depressed mood with the help of yoga, you can avoid these problems having a significant impact on your life and you are less tempted to turn to unhealthy behaviors to cope. However, even if you have developed bad habits as a coping mechanism, taking part in yoga may help to manage cravings, which is why its practice is now incorporated into some withdrawal programs.

The value of the natural environment

Although you could enroll in a yoga class close to home, a change of scenery is in itself beneficial, particularly if you live in a built-up area. Enjoying pleasant surroundings while you practice yoga – whether that’s having a yoga class outdoors, catching a glimpse of greenery or making the most of the natural environment between classes – can really make a difference to your mood. For instance, studies found that activity in green surroundings help to ease stress and depression more than indoor exercise. This finding is understandable, as there is something calming about spending time around nature and you can’t help but feel more positive after outdoor activity against a pleasant backdrop. Certainly when you attend a yoga and happiness retreat you won’t be disappointed by the scenery on offer, letting you take in everything from coastal vistas to jungle landscapes, not to mention the relaxing surroundings of the retreats themselves.

Adventure boost positive feelings

From surfing and kayaking to mountain biking and travelling at speed down a zip-line, you’ll have the chance to try these and similar adventure activities while on your tour with Exotic Yoga Retreats. While admittedly these are far from the relaxing experience offered by yoga, taking part in these active pursuits can also boost your mood. As already mentioned, physical exertion promotes feelings of mental wellness, and as more extreme sports often place high physical demands on your body, this sends levels of the positive brain chemicals endorphins, serotonin and dopamine soaring. However, another aspect of more adventurous pursuits is that you receive an adrenaline rush when you take part in them, which can enhance feelings of positivity.

Nourishing your brain

Exercise and relaxation aren’t the only lifestyle factors that impact on your mood, as the food you eat also makes a big difference. A hectic schedule doesn’t just directly contribute to stress and depressed mood, but it can negatively influence your food choices, encouraging you to choose convenient options, which aren’t always that nutritious. If you end up relying on more processed foods, the artificial additives in these can have an adverse effect on how you feel, which is felt even more as these items are often low in mood-boosting vitamins and minerals. However, when you join a yoga retreat, the food served to you is wholesome and freshly prepared using local ingredients, which makes sure you receive a nutrient dense diet to enhance your mental wellness. Noticing the difference in how you feel may well encourage you to continue this way of eating on your return home, as nutritious food isn’t necessarily time-consuming or expensive to prepare.

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