5 min read

How to Lose Weight with Yoga

By: Kristina Lauer

Does practicing yoga and getting closer to your feel-good body step by step sound like a dream to you? Then we have good news for you. The right combination of a regular yoga practice and a healthy diet can help you reach a feel-good weight.

Other positive effects of a regular yoga class, such as less stress and better balance in everyday life, can also promote weight loss. We’ll tell you how to use yoga for weight loss, plus keeping you relaxed and present and helping you practice self-love.

A little reminder in advance: Whether you’re working on your vinyasas or prefer another way to stay active, always keep an eye on your diet when losing weight. Balanced nutrition is essential so that your body isn’t missing out on anything while you’re trying yoga for weight loss. Just add our Shape Shake 2.0 to your diet plan* to reduce calories while still fueling your body with the best ingredients out there.

Yoga for Weight Loss – How Does It Work?

Doing yoga for weight loss sounds contradictory at first glance. If you know the philosophy behind yoga, you’ll be aware that it didn’t start out as a way to torch maximum calories. Yoga is primarily intended to help you be in the moment, to consciously control your breathing, and to achieve a state of calm through meditation.

Does this mean you can’t use yoga for weight loss? Definitely not! The philosophy behind yoga doesn’t have to stand in your way. In fact, it can support your journey. Because regardless of where you are on your path to fitness or shape goals, we need you to know how important it is to show acceptance of and comfort with your body at every step of the way. Before picking up yoga for weight loss primarily, make sure you are going to enjoy the entire journey and feel grateful for your yoga practice’s effects on your body – whatever effects it does or doesn’t bring. Self-love and self-acceptance don’t stop you from changing or evolving, on either a physical or mental level. Rather, they ensure that you can see the bigger picture regarding your goals, enjoy your progress, and live contentedly and fully.

If you already enjoy doing yoga, a regular practice can accompany and support you in a yoga for weight loss journey. It’s important that you enjoy your practice, because you’ll be doing it regularly from now on! New to yoga for weight loss and wondering how it’ll best fit in with your goals? Check out our article Yoga for Beginners: Here’s what to expect from your first session!

Don’t stress! Take a Relaxed Path to Your Feel-Good Body with Yoga for Weight Loss

The great thing about yoga is that it’s so much more than just a workout! Yoga incorporates a whole philosophy of life that keeps you present and self-aware. Yoga teaches you to consciously pay attention to your surroundings, your behavior, and your thoughts. The keyword here is mindfulness.

Wondering what mindfulness has to do with yoga for weight loss? The answer is: a lot! Focusing completely on yourself and the moment during a yoga class and switching off your mind can help you clear your head and reduce stress. And studies have shown if you’re always stressed, it’s hard to lose weight. A constant excess of the stress hormone cortisol switches your body into a kind of “survival mode” that can not only mess with your sleep, but also with how your body accumulates fat deposits or retains water.

There’s a good reason that yoga classes often start with a mindfulness exercise, such as a short meditation, a body scan while lying down, or a short breathing exercise. This helps you “arrive” mentally at the session, draw your focus into yourself, and consciously notice how your body or your breathing feels. This puts you in the here and now, learning to distance yourself from your other thoughts and worries. The goal is to be in the moment throughout the practice and feel the effect of each asana and breathing exercise on you and your body. It’ll activate the effects of yoga for weight loss.

A white man and a woman of color practice yoga for weight loss in a wooden-floored living room. A small white dog with a red collar stands between them.
©Svetikd

Eat Mindfully: Savor Each Step Towards Your Goal

Mindfulness doesn’t stop with your yoga for weight loss practice. It’s worth applying mindfulness to other areas of your life as well. Take your diet and eating habits. Unfortunately, a lot of us tend to eat very quickly, and more often than not while looking at a screen. That takes a lot of the pleasure out of the experience of eating. If you want to lose weight and keep it off, concentrate on your meals with all your senses, and give yourself the time to fully experience them.

Plan your meals in advance. Give yourself enough time to savor every bite. Chew slowly and notice how the food feels and smells. Not only will this make your lunch a lot tastier, but it can also help you listen to your body’s needs and make choices that feel good and are good for you, which in turn will help on your yoga for weight loss journey. You’ll notice which foods feel good to you and which don’t, and when you’re full – before you’ve already eaten more than you need.

Pick a nice, healthy recipe for your next meal, such as a beet soup with cashew swirl or peanut butter and jelly overnight oats, and try to enjoy your food mindfully. This is guaranteed to give you much more pleasure than mindless snacking at your desk.

Also worth reading: Want to learn more about mindfulness? Then read our article Bring mindfulness into your life and see the changes unfold!

Last but not least: to lose weight, you can’t avoid a calorie deficit. But do you have to count calories to reach your feel-good weight? That’s up to you. Being mindful of what you eat and switching to a balanced diet can already take you quite a long way. Here we have more tips for you on how to reach your feel-good weight without counting calories:

  •   Prepare your meals fresh yourself if possible, or plan and cook them ahead of time
  •   Eat a balanced diet so that all macronutrients (complex carbohydrates, healthy fats. and proteins) find their place on your plate
  •   Emphasize consuming unprocessed food
  •   Eat vegetables every day
  •   Integrate a protein source into every meal
  •   Stick to fixed mealtimes
  •   Avoid liquid calories (e.g. sugary juices and sodas)
  •   Enjoy your food mindfully and minimize distractions, for example from your phone
  •   Reflect on your eating behavior and ask yourself: How do I feel when I eat?

If you’re looking for inspiration for your new eating plan, check out our healthy weight loss recipes.

Summary

  •   A regular yoga practice paired with a balanced diet can help you lose weight.
  •   A healthy dose of self-love will make your weight loss journey more satisfying and fun.
  •   Yoga can enhance your mindfulness and help reduce stress.
  •   Eating mindfully and consciously can make you more aware of your eating behavior and help you to better perceive your body’s signals.

More healthy living facts from foodspring:

*Weight loss with Shape Shake 2.0: Replacing two daily meals with one Shape Shake 2.0 each contributes to weight loss as part of a low-calorie diet. Replacing one meal helps you maintain your weight. The product fulfills the intended purpose only in the context of a low-calorie diet. A low-calorie diet must also include other foods. Be sure to drink enough fluids every day. Ensure a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.

 

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