Freeze Time with Your Mind: The Surprising Anti-Aging Effects of Yoga

Aging affects our immune system, making it more vulnerable to inflammation, which can lead to health problems like heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and stroke. However, a study conducted at Ohio State shows you can fight inflammation and boost your immune system with an activity that requires no exertion.

Yoga to the Rescue

According to the study, practicing yoga poses can help reduce the production of interleukin-6 (IL-6), a significant factor in causing inflammation in the body. Additionally, yoga reduces stress, making it an effective tool for reducing inflammation and strengthening your immune system.

Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, the lead author of the study and a professor of psychiatry and psychology, explained that expert yoga practitioners in the study had lower levels of inflammation even when they were under stress.

This suggests that by incorporating yoga and other stress-reducing techniques into our daily lives, we may be able to respond to stressors more calmly and prevent inflammation-related diseases.

Another researcher, Ron Glaser, added that yoga is an enjoyable and straightforward way to reduce the risks of developing heart disease, diabetes, and other age-related diseases. More importantly, it’s an activity that everyone can try to improve their overall health.

Getting Started with Yoga

Here are some tips to help you start your yoga journey:

  1. Choose the right style: There are various types of yoga, such as Ashtanga, Bikram, Hatha, Iyengar, and Vinyasa. Each style has its unique benefits and focuses on different aspects. For instance, Ashtanga is fast-paced and intense, while Hatha is gentle and suitable for beginners.
  2. Find a qualified instructor: A knowledgeable teacher can provide guidance, correct your form, and help prevent injuries. Make sure your instructor has proper certification from a reputable yoga school.
  3. Start with beginner classes: If you’re new to yoga, look for beginner-level classes that focus on basic poses and breathing techniques.
  4. Be patient and consistent: Yoga is a lifelong practice, so don’t expect drastic changes overnight. Give yourself time to learn and grow at your own pace, and try to practice consistently for the best results.
  5. Listen to your body: Learn to recognize your personal strengths and limitations. Don’t push yourself too hard, and always adapt postures to your comfort level. If a pose causes pain, stop or modify it to avoid injuries.
  6. Use props and modifications: Props like yoga blocks, straps, bolsters, and blankets can help you ease into poses and deepen your practice. Also, don’t hesitate to modify postures as needed to accommodate your specific needs.
  7. Create a home practice: Practicing yoga at home allows you to deepen your understanding of the poses and develop a routine tailored to your needs. However, make sure you attend classes or workshops regularly to receive guidance from a qualified teacher.

The Link Between Stress, Inflammation, and Your Immune System

It’s essential to understand how stress, inflammation, and the immune system are interconnected. Under normal circumstances, inflammation is a natural response to injury or infection, working to protect and heal the body. However, chronic stress can lead to long-term inflammation, which weakens the immune system and increases the risk of developing various health issues.

Since yoga is known to reduce stress and help control inflammation, it’s an excellent choice for reinforcing your immune system and overall well-being, regardless of your age or fitness level.

Yoga for All Ages

Yoga is an excellent practice for people of all ages. Seniors, in particular, can benefit significantly from incorporating yoga into their daily routines. It’s known to improve balance and flexibility, which can help prevent falls and other age-related health concerns.

Likewise, younger people can reap the benefits of yoga as a preventive measure, maintaining a healthy immune system, and reducing the risk of future age-related problems.


Incorporating yoga into your daily life can help keep your immune system strong and fight inflammation, reducing your risks for developing various age-related diseases.

If you’re a beginner, start with gentle styles and practice with a qualified instructor to ensure safe and effective progress. Remember, yoga is a lifelong practice, so be patient and consistent, enjoy the journey, and experience the many physical and mental benefits it offers.