What does research show about yoga for wellness?

Research on yoga for wellness indicates potential benefits in various aspects, including stress management, mental/emotional health, healthy habits, sleep, and balance.

A 2020 review of 12 studies with 672 participants found that yoga had positive effects on perceived stress in healthy adults.

A 2014 review of 17 older studies involving 1,070 participants showed that 12 of them exhibited improvements in physical or psychological measures related to stress due to yoga.

In a 2018 review of 14 studies with 1,084 participants, yoga was found to have beneficial effects on positive aspects of mental health, such as resilience and general well-being.

Yoga programs have been shown to motivate people to adopt healthier eating and activity habits in various studies.

A 2021 study involving 60 obese women revealed that the effect of yoga on body mass index (BMI) depended on changes in physical activity and daily fruit and vegetable intake.

A 2018 survey of 1,820 young adults indicated that regular yoga practice was associated with better eating and physical activity habits. Respondents believed that yoga encouraged mindfulness and healthier habits.

In a 2022 British study, participants at risk for health conditions reported making lifestyle changes in response to a yoga program, including reducing unhealthy food consumption, increasing fruit and vegetable intake, and boosting overall physical activity.

Yoga has been found to be beneficial for sleep in multiple studies, including those involving cancer patients, women with sleep problems, and older adults.

Health care workers, individuals with arthritis, and women experiencing menopause symptoms have reported improved sleep through yoga.

A 2014 review of 15 studies with 688 participants found that yoga had a positive effect on balance in healthy individuals, with 11 of the studies showing improvements.

Newer studies also support the idea that yoga can improve balance, particularly in community-dwelling older adults.