Yoga for Longevity: 10+ Research-Backed Ways Yoga Can Prolong Your Lifespan

Last Updated on February 14, 2024 by Lifevif Team and JC Franco

Yoga is good for you – that’s what we know. But how is it good for you? While the health benefits of Yoga are assumed by the majority of the global population, just how much do we know about its physical, mental, and spiritual benefits? Many Yogis believe that practicing Yoga will help them to live longer. I wanted to find out precisely why. 

Everyone seems to be seeking out the secret to longevity and youthfulness. However, no-one can really trick time and turn back the clock – or pause it even. What you can do is focus on a healthy lifestyle that will automatically earn you extra longevity. Healthy lifestyles, generally, translate to long lifespans.

Simply doing Yoga isn’t going to ensure that you live 50 years longer, but it will put you and your body in a good position to live a long and healthy life; if you are dedicated to the lifestyle that is. Below are 15 ways that Yoga can add value and years to your life.

15 ways Yoga can help you live longer.

1. Yoga promotes a healthy-living lifestyle.

There is no denying that some of the key elements to a long and healthy life are: healthy diet, exercise, sleep, and a healthy mindset. Yoga promotes all of these things in a practitioner’s life. If you are truly committed to Yoga, it is about more than just spending 90 minutes on a Yoga mat a few times a week. It’s about approaching life in a healthy way; body, mind, and soul. By simply following the Yoga lifestyle, you will be increasing your chances of a long lifespan. 

2. Practicing Yoga lowers the risk of heart attacks.

While not all forms of Yoga are high energy like power Yoga, doing any form of Yoga will increase your heart rate

Doing a form of exercise that elevates your heart rate above its regular resting rate, for at least 30 minutes, is an excellent way to boost heart health and reduce the risk of a heart attack. Of course, Yoga does not compare to the cardio workout of running or high-energy aerobics, but it still has a healthy impact on the heart and is particularly useful for those who cannot get involved in other forms of cardio for some reason.

3. Yoga practice increases bone density.

As we get older, bone density becomes a problem. Osteoporosis and general age-related wear and tear can result in severe ailments for aging people. Yoga, done regularly, can help to prevent these problems by increasing the body’s bone density. Any weight-bearing exercise could potentially improves bone density. 

While weights are not used in Yoga, using your own bodyweight to achieve certain poses will naturally increase bone density and do wonders for keeping osteoporosis and similar ailments at bay. 

4. Yoga poses strengthen and tone muscles.

As we age, it is crucial to maintain muscle tone and strength in order to remain physically fit and healthy. If you stop exercising and building muscle strength as you age, you will lose muscle mass and be more prone to serious illnesses, including high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease and more. While Yoga has a relatively high impact on muscle building, it is a low impact exercise. This means that it can be comfortably enjoyed even at old age.

5. Yoga promotes a healthy digestive system.

Digestive system problems seem to arrive along with age. As years go by and we age, our digestive systems slow down considerably. Of course, the right type of exercise can help to speed things along and maintain a healthy gut and digestive system. Yoga poses are designed to help promote digestion and improve the detoxification of the body. Also, a healthy digestive system means a lower risk of colon cancer.

6. Practicing Yoga regularly enhances the quality of sleep.

Sleep is imperative to longevity. Some say that it is the key to a long and healthy life. The more sleep you manage to get, the better it will be for you. In a world of over-stimulation, insomnia and poor quality sleep is often the norm. 

Yoga quiets the mind, slows down the body, and helps to eliminate stress. This makes for a body that is primed for sleep. Some practitioners do a relaxing session of Yoga just before bedtime to ensure a restful night’s sleep.

7. Yoga keeps lymph and immune systems clean.

Your lymph nodes play a role in the functioning of your immune system. Lymph nodes are filled with a fluid that aids in the removal of waste and toxins from the body. Often, these lymph nodes become full of fluid that needs to be drained. Regularly draining the lymph nodes help the body and its immune system to function better. 

You can naturally drain these nodes and boost immune system health by regularly practicing certain Yoga poses and stretches. Certain Yoga movements are designed to drain the nodes, allowing the body to fight off infections. 

8. Yoga poses help to develop better balance and reduce falls.

Yoga poses are challenging at first, but as your core strength and muscles develop, they become easier. Most Yoga poses are designed to improve balance. The sturdier you are on your feet as you get older, the better it will be for you. This will mean fewer falls and, of course, increase your time out of assisted care or old age home living.

9. Yoga increases circulation.

In Yoga sessions, you will find yourself relaxing, but that’s not all. You will also move, twist, and invert your body. All of this increases your blood circulation immensely. Increased circulation delivers more fresh oxygen to your organs, which in turn helps the body fight off disease and also reduces the risk of strokes and even heart attacks.

10. Doing Yoga regularly boosts the adrenal system.

You might be wondering what the adrenal system is anyway. The adrenal glands, just above the kidneys, produce cortisol, which helps with dealing with stress – it’s a hormone. Keeping the adrenal gland healthy and functioning will ensure that your body functions well in terms of stress response, immunity, metabolism, and blood pressure. Many of the Yoga poses and movements are designed to ensure that the adrenal system is creating the correct amount of hormones for efficient adrenal system functioning.

11. Yoga reduces stress and anxiety.

Yoga is a complete body and mind experience. The controlled breathing that is combined with the meditative approach and physical poses helps to reduce stress and promote whole-body and mind relaxation. This helps keep stress and anxiety under control.

12. Doing Yoga improves mobility (the more you move, the easier moving will be).

In order to be youthful for longer, you need to keep moving. Keeping fit and agile as you age will mean that the effects of aging aren’t particularly harsh on you. Aging people often experience problems with mobility. The movements and poses in Yoga are designed to promote a full range of motion in all joints.

The concept is that as you age, the more you move, the easier moving will be.

13. Yoga lowers blood sugar.

Yoga poses are designed to help with detoxing the body. Some of the postures are known to increase how sensitive the body’s β-cells are to glucose. This means that it helps the body regulate insulin secretion and boost the supply of blood to the muscles. This assists with the uptake of glucose, thus lowering blood sugar levels. This is beneficial to people with diabetes.

14. Yoga practice reduces the risk of depression.

Yoga is a fairly focused form of physical exercise. Exercise that is done consistently is known to increase the production of serotonin, which is known as the happy hormone because it helps deplete feelings of depression. The more Yoga you do, the happy you should start to feel.

15. Yoga poses prevent degenerative joint diseases.

Aging can bring on various joint problems and degenerative diseases. By practicing Yoga, you can enjoy a full range of motion in joints. This strengthens cartilage and ensures that underlying bone is kept healthy and protected. It is important to start exercising joints and maintaining a full range of motion as early on in life as possible. 

‘Add Life to Your Years and Years to Your Life’ with Yoga

If you are looking to add longevity and value to your life, Yoga is a great way to start doing that. The physical, mental, and spiritual benefits are simply undeniable. Will Yoga make you live longer? Yoga itself is not a magic elixir, but it does encourage a healthy lifestyle, which promotes a longer lifespan. 

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This article was co-authored by our team of in-house and freelance writers, and reviewed by our editors, who share their experiences and knowledge about the "Seven F's of Life".

JC Franco
Editor | + posts

JC Franco is a New York-based editor for Lifevif. He mainly focuses on content about faith, spirituality, personal growth, finance, and sports. He graduated from Mercyhurst University with a Bachelor’s degree in Business, majoring in Marketing. He is a certified tennis instructor who teaches in the New York City Metropolitan area. In terms of finance, he has passed the Level I exam of the CFA program.