Yoga is beneficial for a myriad of reasons. It’s an excellent workout for your body and mind, relaxing after a stressful day, and helps with flexibility. There’s regular yoga, hot yoga, aerial yoga- just to name a few of the many different variations available in today’s society. Yoga has proven to have both short term and long term benefits and will continue to be a popular workout in society.

But did you know that yoga can also benefit your brain? Yeah, the benefits of yoga just keep on going- here is exactly how:

May improve memory

How exactly are yoga and memory connected? According to a small study, consistently practicing yoga is shown to increase the grey matter in the hippocampus, thalamus, and caudate nucleus areas of the brain. Grey matter in the brain includes muscle control and sensory perception, so an increase in that would lead to improved memory.

Decreases anxiety

Many people do yoga as a form of stress release. Meditation and yoga are frequent suggestions as solutions to anxiety because of the increase in brain activity. Yoga lowers tension in the body and promotes relaxation of both the body and mind. The more consistently you do yoga, the less anxious and stressed you would be.

Improves well-being

Yoga is like the workout that does it all. Not only does it help with weight loss and flexibility, but it also improves mental health. Yoga reduces muscle tension, strain, and inflammation. It also can improve your attention and concentration and centers the nervous system. Practicing yoga enhances a person’s overall well-being by decreasing symptoms of depression, hyperactivity, and even sleep disorders.

Slows brain waves

If you’re finding yourself having a hard time falling asleep at night, try doing yoga right before you go to bed. Yoga has been linked to decreasing insomnia by lowering cortisol levels in the brain, which helps reduce stress. Ever find you can’t fall asleep when you’re stressed? It’s probably because your cortisol levels are too high. Yoga has also been found to increase theta waves, which help with meditation and alpha waves, which help with calmness.

Improves body image

Yoga can help you lose weight and become more comfortable in your body, but the connection between yoga and body image goes beyond just that. Yoga can help you become more appreciative of your body through the various challenging positions and movements. Yoga is generally slow-moving, meaning it can improve your relationship with patience and force you to take the time to do things slowly. Yoga is known to help with your mental states and consistently practicing it could help you find the root cause of a body image issue.