Overeating Help: A Benefit of Yoga

How yoga can help boost mind-body awareness, willpower and heathy eating habits.

Medically reviewed in January 2022

Wouldn't it be nice if, just once, you were able to say no to those office muffins or that second slice of Friday night pizza?

Good news: Yoga could boost that willpower. Aside from making you stronger and more flexible, yoga may help you become more mindful about your eating choices, too.

Mind over muffins
In a 2009 study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, researchers surveyed more than 300 adults on their exercise and eating habits. Detailed questionnaires revealed that people who regularly practiced yoga had a different eating style than people who did other types of exercise. Yoga practitioners were more tuned into their appetites and were better able to judge when they were full. This may be why the yoga devotees also had lower body mass indexes (BMIs) on average, too.

Work your will
Yoga requires calm and focus. The poses also require people to pay close attention to their bodies. And researchers suspect the increased mind-body awareness from yoga is what gives people an edge against many of life's challenges.

It’s that kind of mindfulness that may help them whiz past the fast-food drive-through and head home for a healthy dinner instead.

Article sources open article sources

C Framson, AR Kristal, et al. “Development and validation of the mindful eating questionnaire.” Journal of the American Dietetic Association. 2009 Aug;109(8):1439-44.

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