How Yoga Can Improve Your Mood

How Yoga Can Improve Your Mood

In the 1978 movie Animal House, “Toga! Toga! Toga!” was Bluto’s call for their fraternity to throw a party. The goal? To help a younger frat member, Flounder (Stephen Furst), climb out of his depression after Bluto (John Belushi) and friends wrecked his car. According to today’s research, however, the crew at Delta Tau Chi could have raised his spirits by doing Yoga! Yoga! Yoga!

Investigators at Columbia University, Boston University and Harvard University have found that practicing yoga three times a week lowers symptoms of depression in folks with major depressive disorders and that three times a week is a lot more effective than doing yoga just twice a week. Plus, the yoga was equally effective in easing symptoms of depression for folks taking antidepressants and those with depression who were not on medication.

The researcher’s study, published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, used the practice of Ivengar Yoga—a form of Hatha Yoga that uses precision posture alignment and breath control—for 12 weeks in a well-supervised environment with a good instructor.

So, if you’re dealing with chronic depression, or even just a temporary bout of the blues, seek out a yoga center. Also, take a look at Everyday Yoga at and check out Dr. Mike’s group at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute. They’ve been offering yoga classes for years and provide a training and certification program for instructors. And if you have other health concerns, always check with your doc before starting any exercise regimen.

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