When looking for natural ways to boost your immune system, you might be surprised to learn that yoga is a great method for doing this. The key fundamentals of yoga helps boost immunity and relieve stress. So, how does yoga boost immunity?
Yoga boosts immunity by improving the lungs and airways through deep breathing exercises. It also stimulates the body’s defences against toxins by improving the lymphatic system. Yoga ensures that oxygenated blood travels more quickly and easily to various parts of your body.
Practising yoga has many well established benefits but using it boost your immunity and relive stress are less publicised. So let’s take a closer at how yoga boosts immunity in your body. I believe after reading this article you will be convinced of the benefits of yoga for boosting your immune system.
Why Use Yoga To Improve Immunity?
It may sound strange that yoga can improve your immune system. It’s a practice of meditating and positioning your body into sometimes difficult postures, so how can that work on the immune system? Well, yoga actually does a lot more than meets the untrained eye!
Yoga works on every part of your body. As you move between postures, you’re stimulating different parts of your mind and body. This promotes a healthy lifestyle and builds up your immune system over time.
Using the deep breathing methods and different postures of yoga, you are changing the way your body works. You’re even allowing for oxygenated blood to travel more quickly and easily to various parts of your body.
Improves Lungs and Airways
The deep breathing associated with yoga is often thought to improve your stress levels, but that isn’t the only thing they help. In fact, by doing those deep breathing exercises, you can improve your lungs and airways.
Deep breathing strengthens the muscles of the lungs and allows for better breathing, even when not practising yoga. Those exercises in yoga help condition your lungs to increase their capacity and strength. Improving the amount of oxygen your blood gets helps carry that to other parts of your body, which is much needed for a healthy immune system.
Stimulates the Lymph System
Your lymph system is your body’s way of flushing out the toxins in your body. The lymph system in your body works to filter out the toxins in your blood. It runs your blood through the lymphatic system and then pumping it back out without those elements that lead to ailments and infections. The lymphatic system regulates the fluids in your body to prevent swelling and reduces your risk of getting sick.
Your lymph system doesn’t do this work on its own. The movements and postures of yoga help to move these fluids through your lymph system and prevent any blockages that may occur.
Relieves Stress and Anxiety
Having stress and anxiety can lead to a slew of other health problems without even noticing. In fact, higher levels of stress or anxiety can leave your immune system defenceless against viruses and other ailments.
The reason that yoga is so beneficial for your stress and anxiety is that the deep breathing exercises help you clear your mind. This clarity will allow your body to focus its energy on other areas, such as the lymphatic system.
Stress raises your resistance to certain hormones, such as cortisol. Increases in this resistance will work against your immune system and can lead to inflammation in other areas of your body. Reducing your stress limits not only this risk but also alleviates your chances of colds and other minor ailments.
5 Yoga Positions To Boost Your Immunity
There are so many yoga postures that you can use to boost your immunity. It promotes flexibility and allows for the optimal usage of all the defences your body already has. Below you’ll find information on 5 different yoga positions that will help you boost your immunity.
The Viparita Karani Position
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This is a great position to help boost your lymph system and move the fluids in your body. It helps drain the fluids from your legs so that they might work their way through the lymph system and back.
You perform this posture by laying flat on your back with your legs against a wall above you. This posture allows gravity to do the work for your lymph system by allowing the fluids to drain from your legs quickly. When performing this posture, remember to maintain deep, even breathing to get the most out of this beneficial pose.
Watch the video below to properly perform the Viparita Karani, also known as Legs on the Wall:
Shishuasana (Child’s Pose)
This posture is a good one to help combat cold and flu season. It works to de-congest your body as well as reduce your stress and calm your mind. This pose will also help relieve any back pain you may be experiencing.
To perform this pose, you’ll need to sit on your knees, with your hips resting on your heels. You’ll bend your body forward over your legs and rest your forehead on the ground in front of you. Your arms should be kept alongside you, with your palms facing up. Press into your thighs and hold. At the end of the pose, you’ll slowly raise your body and then relax.
If it’s uncomfortable to rest your forehead on the floor, you can place one fist over the other in front of you. Rest your forehead on your fists rather than on the floor. Check out the video below for step by step instructions for Child’s Pose:
The Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)
This is a pose that will improve the circulation of blood to your heart and other organs. While this posture boosts your immune system, it also increases your flexibility as well. Increased flexibility and mobility will enhance the performance of your lymph system.
To perform this posture, you’ll start by lying flat on your stomach with your face on the ground. With your feet close together, place the palms of your hands under your shoulders and keep your elbows tucked in close to your body. Push your upper body off the floor while keeping your belly button on the floor.
Anuvittasana (Standing Backbend) for Respiratory Relief
This posture can be used for respiratory relief, especially during cold and flu season. This specific position will twist your body and open your airways. It works great to keep your nasal passages clear as well.
To perform this position, you’ll stand with your back straight and your feet together. Place your hands on the small of your back with your fingers pointed down. Arch your lower back backward as far as you can. If it’s uncomfortable, you can bend your knees slightly to relieve some of that pressure.
Matsyasana Posture to Detox and Strengthen Immunity
This posture, which is also known as fish pose, is great for boosting your immunity. It works by opening up your nasal passages and relieving congestion. The fish pose also boosts your energy levels.
To perform this pose correctly, you’ll lay flat on your back. Slowly tilt your head back until the top of your head is resting on the floor. Keep your legs straight out with your feet together. Place your palms face down at your sides and breathe evenly.
Yoga may not be something you think of when looking to improve your physical health. However, it’s actually one of the more natural ways to do just that. There are plenty of yoga postures that you can do from the comfort of your own home that will reduce your stress and improve your health. Hopefully, this article has provided you with helpful information on how yoga can boost your immunity.