Are your yoga-practicing friends also some of the healthiest people you know? It turns out - it’s not a coincidence.
And it’s also not just because of the green-juice-drinking lifestyle that so many yoga practitioners adopt.
Study after study has shown that a regular yoga practice can actually have immense benefits for our immune systems.
How Yoga Helps Boost Immunity
And since we live in a world where easy access to global travel and constant interconnectedness exposes us to new and unpredictable pathogens, it has become more critical than ever to maintain a strong immune system.
By reducing the overall stress symptoms of the practitioner, regular yoga practice makes it easier to sleep, focus, and maintain a regular, healthy appetite. In turn, people that are very stressed or have chronic stress symptoms often have worse sleep, more trouble focusing, and are more likely to deal with disordered eating or might choose foods with less nutritional value.
Think about it: when you feel less stressed, you probably also feel better equipped to handle the day and any complications or small anxieties that might come up.
Likewise, bodies that are less stressed are also going to be naturally better equipped to handle the external germs and bacteria that make us sick.
One way that some yogis are supplementing their practice to provide even more immunity benefits is with the use of CBD.
In addition to the stress-relieving properties of CBD, this herbal extract has also been shown to lessen pain, inflammation, and certain types of disease. Since CBD does not contain the psychoactive properties of THC, it does not affect a yoga practioner’s state of mind other than producing a mild sensation of calm in certain situations.
This makes CBD the perfect addition to enhance a yoga practice for immunity.
We put together a short yoga flow in two parts - heating and detox - that is specifically designed to strengthen and support the immune system. When combined with CBD supplements, this yoga sequence is a great way to not only stay healthy during cold and flu season, but develop stress-relieving habits that will keep your immune system at its best all year round.
If you want to boost your immunity further and have all bases covered, as well as CBD, Drishti Multivitamin for Yoga could be the perfect product for you.
Breath of Fire
Prepare a relaxing and comfortable environment for your yoga practice. This might be a good time to take your CBD supplement or apply a topical CBD balm or lotion. You might also try laying out a blanket or yoga mat, lighting incense or a candle, and putting on comfortable clothes to move in.
We’ll begin in a seated position for the Breath of Fire. You might opt for criss-crossed legs, a lotus position, or maybe sitting back on your heels. The most important thing is to maintain a long, straight spine.
To begin the Breath of Fire, lightly close your mouth and draw in a long, slow, deep breath. Suck in air all the way up and hold at the top of your inhale. Next, exhale in tiny, sharp breaths out your nose while pulling your belly button in towards your spine to push out the air. These short breaths should be very quick - less than half a second. Relax the chest but keep the abdominals engaged. To sustain, take tiny sharp inhales between every exhale.
Continue for about two minutes, taking short breaks to refill air if need be. Discontinue if lightheadedness occurs.
This heating breath will bring warmth and circulate air throughout the body, helping to wake up the mind and the nervous system and prepare you for more movement.
Sun Salutation A
To continue the heating and warming of the body, come to stand at the top of your blanket or yoga mat. Bring your hands overhead and your palms together.
Fold down towards your toes with a flat back, hinging at your hips on an exhale. Take a deep inhale and lift up halfway, straightening your spine and gazing slightly forward. You might bring your fingers to your knees or shins.
On your next exhale step back to a high plank, and use the full breath to lower to your belly. Your hands will rest by your ribcage with your elbows pointing towards the sky. Use an inhale to peel your chest up and off the floor, gazing slightly upward.
On your next exhale, space your hands shoulder’s distance apart and press up to a downward facing dog. Your hips should be reaching skyward while your heels reach towards the floor.
Come up on to your tiptoes, look at the space between your hands, and use an exhale to jump or step to a forward fold.
Repeat 5-10 times or until your body starts to feel warm.
Lord of the Fishes Pose
Come to a seat at the top of your mat. Bend both knees and cross your right knee over your left so that opposite heels come to rest by each hip, with knees pointed forward. If you feel tightness in your knees here, keep your bottom (left) leg extended long so that only your right heel is tucked in towards your left hip.
Cross your left elbow outside your right knee and plant your left hand behind you, turning your gaze to your right side or all the way behind you.
Hold for 5-10 breaths, keeping your spine (especially your low back) long and straight, and helping to detox your internal organs.
Repeat on side two.
Seated Tree Pose
Remaining in a seat, take both legs out long in front of you and shake them out. Bring your right foot in towards your body so that the sole of your foot presses your inner thigh (or shin if you feel tightness in the knee) and your knee falls out to the right.
Lengthen your spine and hinge forward with a flat back, keep your gaze ahead of you. Hold for five breaths, and then round your spine so that your nose reaches towards your knees while walking your fingers towards your knee, shin, or toes. Hold for another five breaths.
Repeat on side 2.
Lie all the way down on your spine and bring your knees in towards your chest. Gently let both knees fall to the right side, coming to stack on top of each other. You might try moving your hips gently to the left just an inch or so. Take your hands out wide in a “T” shape and turn your gaze to the left. Close your eyes and hold for 5 full rounds of breath.
Repeat on side 2.
Repeat the above sequence on a regular basis coupled with daily intake of Drishti Arogya Multivitamin for a stronger immune system.