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Yoga can help individuals manage stress levels

Category: Hormones and Metabolism

Individuals who have received cortisol test results showing high levels of stress may benefit from taking a yoga class. The findings of a new study from Johns Hopkins University indicate that the practice is affective at helping people manage stress.

According to the Baltimore Sun, the researchers enrolled nearly 100 fourth- and fifth-graders into a 12-week class that taught them meditation and yoga. The children were asked before and after participating in the program to fill out surveys concerning their stress levels.

The researchers found that participants were significantly more able to concentrate in class after practicing yoga and meditation. Additionally, they reported spending much less time ruminating over negative thoughts caused by stress.

The findings are particularly important for individuals who live in inner-city environments, as the researchers told the news source that these people often experience much higher levels of chronic stress, and that this can have negative effects on their overall health.

Managing stress is important, as cortisol, which is released during moments of stress by the adrenal glands, affects a number of health systems in the body, including the immune system, the circulatory system and the skeletal system, according to the National Institutes of Health.

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