Millions of people are overweight and suffer the risk of obesity – a health hazard. Being overweight does not equal to obesity. Many confuse the two. Overweight simply means having excessive body fat. Obesity on the other hand, is a medical condition whereby accumulated body fat has reached a point of being hazardous.
Modern day life puts a lot of pressure on individuals to be in shape and look great resulting in a plethora of undesirous “get slim” practices, which include the proliferation of diet drugs, starvation, and unbalanced nutrition. I call this “undesirous” as the negative effects of such practices far outweigh the benefits.
On the other hand, losing weight is not as difficult as one may think it to be. The hardest part is getting into a mindset that is conducive to weight loss. I make it very clear to my students that the right mind set is as important if not more important than the actual physical routine. The trick is to maintain a burning desire to lose weight. To maintain a burning desire, always visualize your self with that figure you want. Do this at least twice a day for 5 minutes. As cultivating the right mindset is not the scope of this article, I will not delve further into this. Suffice to say that you should focus an equal amount of time focusing on your mindset as you would on physical activity.
Now there are many conventional methods of losing weight and one of the best methods is through yoga. The reason I am inclined towards Yoga is because it is simple, effective and can be performed by anyone. You do not require any sort of machinery or equipment to help you lose weight. All you need is a well ventilated 8 by 6 feet space virtually anywhere.
I have listed specific asanas (postures) below, which must be practised according to sequence. The asanas must be practised every morning on an empty stomach before 8:00 am as this helps you experience the additional joy of having more energy throughout the day. It will also help you maintain a vibrant and beautiful face. Having 5 glasses of water 30 minutes before practice is highly recommended.
The Yoga asanas that must be performed daily (in sequence) are:
- Suria Namaskar (Sun Salutation) – 12 complete cycles
- Sarvangasana (Shoulder Stand) – Hold the pose for 12 minutes
- Matsyendrasana (Fish Pose) – Hold the pose for 2 minutes
- Halasana (Plough Pose) – Hold the pose for 2 minutes
- Chakrasana (Wheel Pose) – Hold the pose for 1 minute
- Pashimostasana (Bird Pose) – 3 repetitions, holding the pose for at least 20 seconds
- Dhanurasana (Bow Pose) – 3 repetitions, holding the pose for at least 20 seconds
- Pawanamuktasana (Gas Expelling pose) – 3 repetitions, holding the pose for at least 20 seconds
- Trikonasana (Triangle Pose) – 5 repetitions, holding the pose for at least 20 seconds
- Agnisara (Stomach Flapping) – 20 flaps
- Yoga Mudra with all 3 Bandhas – 3 times, hold for at least 20 seconds
- Relaxation – 10 minutes
Do not be concerned if at first you are unable to complete the number of repetitions or hold the postures according to what I have prescribed above. Start with where you are comfortable and gradually increase your number of repetitions and pauses while holding a posture.
By practising the above postures everyday, your metabolic rate will increase, helping you burn fat at a faster rate. In addition to the postures above, you will have to adhere to the guideline below:
- Do not over eat.
- Chew your food slowly and properly.
- Do not retire soon after dinner.
- Avoid alcohol during meals or 3 hours before meal.
- Have regular and sufficient sleep.
Losing weight is not only confined to the practice of intense and vigorous movements. In yoga there is another very effective method called Prana Shakti. It is about balancing a person’s weight using ancient yogic techniques. This technique cannot be described or explained in a brief article as it must be learned from an experienced guru. The technique does not use physical movements but rather the invocation of prana (life force) through breath. Prana which is converted to heat has the ability to burn fat. This method has been proven very successful in my centre. It can be mastered within a few weeks of practice.