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Yoga for the brain

Yoga instructor Lamya Arsiwala tells you how yoga can boost brain power, and about some simple asanas you need to perform to experience these benefits. There are many reasons why the practice of yoga helps boost brain power. Studies have shown that practicing yoga regularly causes brain cells to develop new connections. Changes occur in brain structure as well as function, and these result in improvements in cognitive skills, such as learning and memory. Yoga, thus, has benefits in the areas of memory, attention, awareness, thought, and language. MRI scans have been used to study people who did yoga regularly and compare their brains to those who did not; practitioners of yoga were seen to have a thicker cerebral cortex (which processes information) and hippocampus (which is involved in learning and memory) compared to those who did not practice yoga. Moreover, while these areas of the brain tend to shrink with advanced age, regular yoga practitioners experienced less shrinkage – suggesting that yoga may even stave off cognitive decline.

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