Yoga And Meditation trigger the growth of new brain cells…
Many have heard about Yoga and the tremendous benefit of it. It’s an ancient practice after all. These days it’s becoming more and more popular. How good is this bendy sport really though? They say Yoga is very healthy for your body and brain; it can prevent Dementia and improve the symptoms of it. In fact Yoga can slow down the process of the memory loss! We’re amazed, tell us more…
In previous articles such as “Musical Medicine & Dementia” we’ve discussed how music can be an effective therapy for people living with Dementia, now we’re looking at the bendy craft that is yoga for the same results.
Here are a few interesting facts about Yoga and its benefits:
- Practicing Yoga can improve your sleep patterns, and help you cope with insomnia, which is something very common among many people and people with dementia too. Sat Bir Khalsa, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, says: “Yoga is an effective treatment because it addresses insomnia’s physical and psychological aspects.”
- Meditation may preserve your mind and slow the Alzheimer’s disease.
- Yoga could reduce the risk to get heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, stress hormones.
- Yoga can also improve balance, reduce falls, ease arthritis, and improve breathing for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. According to HARVARD MEDICAL SCHOOL.
According to a new study by BETH ISRAEL DEACONESS MEDICAL CENTER “the brain changes associated with meditation and stress reduction may play an important role in slowing the progression of age-related cognitive disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.”
The ‘hippocampus’ – the part of the brain responsible for emotions, learning and memory is known to atrophy as people progress toward mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease according to Wells. The ‘hippocampus’ is activated during meditation. People who practice Yoga and meditation can concentrate better and experience less atrophy.
Yoga also helps to build strength and balance. Practicing yoga can help you to achieve better balance and by that prevent falls. Which is a leading cause of injuries for older adults, including adults with dementia. Meditation can prevent chronic stress, anxiety, depression and the feeling of loneliness all of these are suspected contributors of Alzheimer’s disease, thus a reduction of the risk here is noted. Yoga and meditation engage different parts in our brain and both are considered as ‘brain exercises’, on the components of practice (breathing, movement, postures, chanting, visualization, concentration). Additionally, yoga can help to the brain to recover from injuries.
“A new study has found that intense concentration and relaxation could lead to a growth of new brain cells, protecting against the brain shrinkage linked to – and slowing – Alzheimer’s.”
In addition to yoga and meditation, exercise and general physical activity have a serious impact on the well-being of people with dementia. Exercising also helps to reduce the risk for cancer, stroke and heart disease. It also helps to keep our bones strong and reduces the risk of osteoporosis.
Yoga is very good for your heart, the following position helps to slow down the heart rate and it makes you feel relaxed.
What’s great about yoga is that it can be done anywhere. All you need is your yoga mat. Outdoor yoga is very therapeutic.
The yoga supergran is a proof that Yoga has no age limit, at the age of 83, Bette Calman was still able to practice yoga and according to her she became even better within the years. ‘I’m proof that if you keep at it, you’ll get there. I can do more now than I could 50 years ago,’ Mrs Calman said.
Yoga and meditation contribute a lot to our health, we at the DC support the practice of yoga. We look forward to introducing yoga practise in our café once built. Until then, we encourage you all to sit comfortably, leave your troubles at the side of the mat, close down the eyes and relax into the thought that we have nowhere to go, no-one to be and no thoughts to trouble us…Namaste.