Self-healing through Yoga and Meditation

  • Know the benefits of Yoga and Meditation and how both can help self-healing.

Stress is omnipresent in today’s life. However, chronic unaddressed stress can play havoc on our physical and mental well-being. Conventional medical treatments, often fail to fully cure and heal diseases. Hence, more and more people are turning to alternative therapies that include yoga and meditation practices. Yoga which includes a rhythmic set of asanas with controlled breathing is believed to heal many chronic conditions while meditation helps to calm and relax the mind thus helping to manage stress.


This article gives the benefits of yoga and meditation that heal imbalances in our body and mind.


Yoga as a way of life

Yoga is an Indian philosophy that goes back centuries. An approachable form of workout, yoga involves asanas or postures that are accompanied by breath control. However, the scope of yoga transcends the realm of physical postures as it encompasses mantra chanting, pranayama and meditation. In fact, at a higher level, a yogic way of life nudges us to turn our focus inwards and become more aware of our surroundings.


To put it simply, yoga is all about connecting our mind with our body in one union. In fact, the word yoga is derived from the Sanskrit word Yuj which means to bind or yoke. Similarly, yoga has an organic view of helping keep our body and mind in the same place and at the same time.


Benefits of yoga

Notwithstanding the spiritual reasons, yoga is practiced today for its many physical health benefits.


1. Eases chronic low-back pain

Sedentary lifestyles lead to poor postures. This can lead to low back pain and pain in the neck and shoulders. Yoga relieves lower back pain by building stability and core strength. Yoga and meditation together enable relaxation while easing the discomfort that arises from chronic lower back pain. Cat/cow pose, Standing Forward Bend and Downward Dog are some of the best yoga poses to relieve lower back pain.

2. Fights fatigue

Yoga stretches help pump oxygen-rich blood to the muscles and organs of the body. This helps fight tiredness and fatigue. Bikram yoga and Hatha yoga have particularly been found useful in fighting fatigue. Inversion postures like Forward Facing Dog and Forward Fold where the heart is at an elevated level are particularly useful in increasing energy.


3. Fights inflammation

Inflammation is a precursor for many conditions including diabetes, arthritis, Chron’s disease etc. Many scientific studies have shown that regular yoga practice lessens the biochemical makers in many chronic conditions.


4. Boosts immunity

Chronic stress leads to a loss of immunity making you susceptible to illness. However, yoga is a good natural intervention to beat stress. Although research in this area is still at an early stage, there is a good amount of data to show a distinct link between regular yoga practice and better immunity.


5. Improves mental health

Chronic stress plays havoc on our mental health. Many people suffer from mental health conditions like anxiety, depression, PTSD and panic attacks. Yoga has proved to be a good add-on to conventional therapies. There have been many positive outcomes related to mental health by healing through yoga and meditation.


Meditation: the key to self-awareness

Yoga and meditation together have offered a healing touch to many ailing people around the world. If yoga is perceived as a form of exercise that includes physical postures, meditation is looked upon as a window for realizing self-awareness and spirituality. Meditation involves training your mind to focus and develop concentration. Meditation imparts a sense of calm and peace that helps nurture your emotional and overall well-being. 


Benefits of meditation

Yoga and meditation aid with relaxation and help fight stress. Here are a few other health benefits of meditation that promote self-healing.


1. Aids in stress reduction

Stress reduction is by far the most common reason for people to meditate. Stress is related to elevated levels of stress hormone namely, cortisol. Elevated cortisol levels can further aggravate stress and lead to sleep disruptions and hypertension. It may also result in depression and anxiety. Practices such as mindfulness meditation helped reduce inflammation responses tied to stress. Furthermore, meditation improved symptoms in stress-induced conditions of PTSD, IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and fibromyalgia.


2. Promotes emotional health

It has been observed that people who suffer from chronic ailments have low self-esteem and recurring negative thoughts. However, some meditation forms can help improve self-image and gain a more positive attitude towards life.


3. Fights sleeplessness

We all must have suffered from sleeplessness at some point in our lives. However, chronic lack of sleep or insomnia can be debilitating and cause spiraling cycles of mood disorders like depression. However, practicing meditation especially close to bedtime helps reduce anxiety and improves the quality of sleep.


4. Helps manage pain

Chronic painful conditions like arthritis and fibromyalgia can affect the quality of life. However, people who practice meditation have a better ability to cope with painful conditions and can even experience lesser pain sensations.


5. May help fight addictions

Meditation promotes mental discipline that can help fight your dependencies. This can be achieved by the perception of triggers of addictive substances and self-control. Also, practicing meditation helped people reduce binge and emotional eating by controlling food cravings.


6. Pranayama - breath of life

Yoga, pranayama and meditation together form a complete yoga regimen that most people are prescribed today. For those unversed, pranayama are a set of breathing exercises which usually follow asana practice.


In pranayama, one controls the duration, timing and frequency of each breath. There are various kinds of breathing exercises like Kapalbhati, Anulom-Vilom, Bhastrika and Ujjayi pranayama that help increase energy levels in the body and aid in the removal of toxins.


Pranayama practice benefits are almost similar to those of yoga and meditation. However, pranayama improves lung function and serves as a lung strengthening tool for respiratory conditions like asthma, tuberculosis and pneumonia.

The bottom line

In its entirety, yoga  is a vast domain comprising self-disciplinary and contemplative practices. A yogic way of life may include prayer, mantra, rituals and even selfless gestures besides simply the physical asanas. Besides, there are a great variety of yoga and meditative styles that people follow. The idea here is to enhance your quality of life by improving your physical and emotional well-being.



1. Benefits Pranayam

2. Benefits of Meditation

3. Benefits of Yoga

4. Benefits of Yoga

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