IL 6It looks like you can add one more health benefit to yoga’s long list. This one is about reducing inflammation, a firey condition that arises from stress and other factors and makes us vulnerable to diseases like cancer, diabetes, arthritis, Alzheimer’s. and many others. (Thanks to blog sistah Stacie Stukin for her heads-up on this.)

This particular yoga study, done at Ohio State University and published in , showed that women who practiced relaxing, restorative yoga regularly (at least twice a week) had a lower level of the cytokine (a substance secreted by immune system cells)  (IL-6) in their blood, a key culprit in instigating inflammation. It also found that those women maintained a lower level of IL-6 when exposed to stressful situations. (The image at left of the red curls is a graphic representation of IL-6–say “cheese,” little cytokine!)

Since yoga has so many elements–breathing, stretching, paying attention–it’s hard to know which parts we can extract and apply to reducing stress outside of yoga for non-yogis. But this study does underline the fact that stress has a tangible, immediate impact on our blood, bodies, and lives. The good news being that it is possible to reduce its impact just as tangibly. 

What do you do to reduce stress?

Like what you see? Click here to subscribe and get Fresh Living in your in-box every day!

More from Beliefnet and our partners
previous posts

This is the post in which we say goodbye.  We’re both leaving our respective jobs at Beliefnet, and so it’s time to step away from the blog. So, this is the post in which we say goodbye…by saying thank you.  Thank you to you, the readers, for clicking and visiting and sharing the myriad ways […]

Are you a frustrated dreamer? I know I am. I often wake up with fragments of scenes echoing in my mind that seem really meaningful–but then I leap out of bed, start my morning routine, and in seconds they’re gone. I want to linger in that realm and tap into the guidance and insight rising […]

Because I lack an engineering degree and don’t understand why we can’t just stop this thing NOW with a 10-ton wad of gum or giant boulder or massive Q-tip, I’ll share more spiritual wisdom from elders. This is from the beautiful, amazing International Council of 13 Indigenous Grandmothers–they each represent a continent and a native […]

“Worry is a prayer for something you don’t want.” – Sharon Gannon I love that. The other day someone expressed concern about my excessive worrying habit, and I’ve been contemplating on it ever since. Doing my best to actually contemplate, rather than worry. I’ve been on a renewed Gilmore Girls binge lately and last night as Lorelai, […]

Close Ad