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How yoga changes your brain can provide benefits beyond just the body and how it can positively affect the brain. One of the public misconceptions that yoga changes your brain is that it’s just a different form of exercise. It may be because people often see yogis doing pretzel-like stretches and poses. However, the truth is that the benefits of changes in your brain are more extensive than the physical ones. We can now see how regular exercise affects your brain thanks to modern technology and functional MRIs.
Yoga Changes your Brain Increases Grey Matter Density
Our brain mainly consists of two types of tissue: white staple and grey matter. An average human brain consists of about 60% white substance and 40% grey matter. Both play an essential role in healthy cognitive function, but each type of brain tissue has a different part:
- Grey matter is made up of your brain cells or neurons. Although it is called grey matter, it is pink in colour. Because while you’re alive, blood is constantly flowing through you. Grey matter is responsible for many functions in your brain, including learning abilities and memory, due to its neuron density. It is also responsible for interpreting your senses of sight, hearing, smell and touch. Additionally, it affects muscle control and self-awareness.
- White matter is the connections that extend from your brain cells. Its job is to connect different parts of your brain by allowing yoga changes your brain regions to send and receive signals from each other, just as the internet connects the world. Thus, healthy white matter allows your brain to coordinate your thoughts and movements.
In general, matter and white matter complement each other, allowing you to think, coordinate your movements, and interpret the world around you. Damage or reduction in both areas affects your cognitive abilities. The relevance of yoga to our brain matter is that new research has shown that yoga increases the matter volume in the hippocampus and anterior parts of your brain.
Why do you Have Folded Tissues in your Brain?
It is because your yoga changes your brain has to fit inside your head. And as your skull is small, it has to discover a way to “fit” in there.
Remember to prepare a small suitcase to visualize this. It has so much space. If you put all your clothes in there, it won’t be easy to put everything in there. But if you fold or fold your clothes correctly, you can fit more in the same small suitcase. The best part is that folding or buckling your clothes doesn’t change the size of your shirt or pants when you wear them. They always contain the same amount of tissue.
It uses the same concept as the gyrification, bending and twisting of yoga and changes your brain tissues to appear as folds. In development, they allow more surface area to fit into your skull, retaining more neurons.
What is the Place of Yoga? – Yoga Changes your Brain
Holistic yoga comprises three main components that deal with your physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. These come in poses (asanas), breath work (pranayama), and meditation.
Regarding your brain, meditation plays a significant role, as it is linked to growing the number of folds in your brain. According to a study by UCLA researchers, brain MRIs showed greater gyrification in the cerebral cortex of those who meditated for long periods. Researchers believe this is due to the brain’s neuroplasticity, which indicates that the brain adapts to changes in its environment. In this case, 20 or more years of consistent or regular meditation produced structural changes in the brain. Interestingly, the study also academic that the number of years of the application correlated with the amount of estrus.
Because your cerebral cortex is responsible for language, reasoning, perception, information processing, memory, and voluntary drive, increased gyrification leads to better function and faster energy processing.
When you do yoga changes your brain, your brain cells develop new networks, and changes occur in brain structure and function that improve cognitive skills such as education and memory. Yoga supports parts of the brain that play a crucial role in memory, attention, awareness, thought, and language.
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