Lots of famous celebs like Jennifer Aniston practice yoga on a regular basis, so it must be helping them to burn the belly fat right? Well, kind of, but not really as much as you’d think.
Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a quick way to burn away that belly fat, then yoga isn’t the answer. However, there are lots of reasons why you should give yoga a go, and it will certainly contribute just fine towards shedding those extra pounds!
Does yoga burn belly fat?
First of all, if you are looking to burn belly fat then it’s important to know that there isn’t a method of exercise or diet that specifically targets the fat cells around the stomach. You may have read about some amazing exercises that blast away that belly fat in no time – but this isn’t really the case!
Weight loss is a gradual process, and the fat cells all around your body will gradually disappear at the same time. So no matter how many sit-ups you do, you won’t really make a real difference to the fat around your belly unless you have a balanced diet and exercise.
So why practice yoga?
Although yoga won’t directly target belly fat, it is however an exercise that can get the heart pumping and the metabolism racing. So if you are thinking about devising a plan of action to get rid of that belly fat, then it’s certainly a good idea to bring yoga into the mix.
It also doesn’t matter if you are completely new to yoga and don’t think you’ll be very good at it. There is a learning curve to yoga just like anything else, and not only will it help
All of these things are extremely important when it comes to weight loss, so this is why yoga can be a great contribution to any diet and exercise regime!
Isn’t yoga quite static?
There are certainly some aspects to yoga which won’t get the heart racing too much, but it really does depend on which style of yoga you choose. Some forms of yoga are more energetic – Ashtanga and Vinyasa for example.
The most direct way to burn body fat is to choose an exercise that is strictly cardio and very energetic. Interval training for example is a fantastic way to get the heart pumping.
However, studies have shown that practicing yoga as well training in the gym will not only contribute to burning calories, but will also help you to mediate your body better and help you to develop the tools needed to be able to listen to your body as well.
A 2009 study, conducted by the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Institute, found that people who didn’t practice yoga regularly were more likely to gain weight – in contrast to those that did who were able to better control there eating habits, and more likely to maintain or lose weight.
So should I include yoga in my regime?
Absolutely! If you have the time and the energy, then yoga is a fantastic way to help you better understand your body and will contribute to your overall performance in the gym, as well as help you maintain a healthy balanced diet.
Yoga is very much about discipline, and when it comes down to it, discipline is what’s needed when you are trying to lose weight and get fit. With the added bonus of helping you to sleep better at night, yoga may just be what you need to keep on the path to a healthy life!
Yoga resources and further reading:
- A guide to yoga (NHS)
- Yoga videos and guides (Yoga.com)