When the mind and body are connected, activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA) is reduced (American Council on Exercise, 2012). The adrenals decrease the production of cortisol and catecholamines, which are hormones produced by the adrenal glands and released during times of physical and emotional stress. The primary catecholamines are epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine (some of which are part of the “fight or flight” response). When the hormones decrease, so do arousal and hypervigilance (American Council on Exercise, 2012). 

Yoga Benefits

Yogi's experience pleasure (or transcendental experiences) that are the same uplifting feelings derived from eating certain foods. As a result, yoga “rewires” the brain and reduces stress-related habits. When awareness is present, individuals are cognizant of their actions and relationship with food. The more “good” hormones that are secreted, the more positive the transition into healthier behaviors. Yoga connects the sensations of feeling good away from food and binge eating. 

Yoga is a profound exercise that organically changes people, perceptions, and behaviors. Balanced hormones integrated with relaxed states of assisting the emotional body to process life circumstances. In simple terms, the “rewiring” is an organic process that enlightens beings and enhances self-confidence. Overcoming food addictions with yoga is a journey and not an instant recovery method. The more the body stimulates positivity outside of food, the more inclined an individual will be to leave negative food habits behind. 

Elizabeth Kovar, MA, health & fitness expert, and author studied yoga in five different countries. Her master's thesis, "Creating Yoga Programs for People with Movement Disabilities," was implemented on a 12-week study for people with Stage 1-2 Parkinson's disease. Based in Seattle, she serves as fitness coordinator at a local recreation center.