Incorporating both aerobic exercise and yoga into your exercise regimen may offer more benefits than either form of exercise alone, according to new research. In an 18-month-long study on people who had both heart disease and type 2 diabetes, one group practiced traditional Indian yoga, another did aerobic exercise, and a third did both aerobic exercise and yoga. The good news: Everyone got healthier. Blood pressure, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, and cholesterol levels improved in both the yoga-only group and the cardio-only group. The great news: Those who did both cardio and yoga had double the improvements! Traditional Indian yoga is different from most popular yoga classes in the United States, focusing not only on poses but also on meditation, breathing, and spiritual practice. But research supports the stress-relieving, strengthening, and overall health benefits of American-style yoga, too. And while this study focused on chronically ill people, both aerobic exercise and yoga can help prevent disease.
"The yoga mat is a good place to turn when talk therapy and antidepressants aren't enough."