“Yoga can be a good source of exercise,” said Jorianne Numbers, MS, an exercise physiologist with Northwestern Medicine. At the most basic level, she said, yoga is a form of movement that helps you burn calories, which is a major part of losing weight (though your exact amount burned will depend on your height, weight, and gender).
But there’s more behind yoga’s relationship with weight loss than first meets the eye. An effective practice also fosters a mind-body connection that makes you more mindful in every facet of your life. “Yoga brings you into a heightened state of awareness,” explained Lara Heimann, physical therapist, yoga instructor, and founder of LYT Method, a yoga certification program. Moving through different poses and holds increases your awareness of your body, and that can translate to other effective weight-loss habits, like eating healthy, which is key for losing weight no matter what exercise you’re doing. (Try this two-week clean eating plan to get started.) “The congruency between mindfulness on and off of the mat is what can make yoga more effective for weight loss than other forms of exercise,” Lara told POPSUGAR.
Yoga has long been regarded as an effective way to relieve stress, and that on its own can be a weight-loss tool. “Having a less stressful life, and fewer stress hormones such as cortisol, can help anyone lead a healthier lifestyle,” explained Liza Janda, a certified yoga instructor at Yoga Janda. Cortisol is an appetite stimulant, hence why we tend to eat (and overeat) when we’re stressed out and to crave unhealthy foods in particular. A relaxing yoga practice can help you deal with stress in a healthier way and even avoid it, and the related weight gain, altogether. (Try this relaxing yoga sequence or one of these stress-busting yoga videos to see for yourself.)
Which Practices Are Best For Weight Loss?
If you’re looking for pure calorie burn, our experts agreed that fast-paced Vinyasa yoga is the practice to choose. “A good Vinyasa class will take you through a variety of movements, with a focus on integrating your core and weight-bearing on your hands and feet,” Lara explained. Imagine a classic flow from plank to tricep push-up to upward facing dog – you’re getting a core burn, working your triceps, then using your arms to hold up your bodyweight as you stretch. This kind of weight-bearing move “increases heart rate and builds muscle,” Liza told POPSUGAR. The more muscle you build, the more calories you’ll burn even after you’re done exercising.
Power yoga is another good choice, Jorianne told POPSUGAR, though it’s more intense and better suited for people who are already in good shape. “In power yoga, there is less meditation and more of a focus on standing poses and faster-paced movement,” she explained. Your heart will pump even harder than in a Vinyasa class, which is good news for losing weight; Liza recommended aiming for a heart rate that’s 55 to 85 percent of your maximum to get the most calories burned out of a class. (Use this guide to calculate your max heart rate and find your target zones.)
And what about hot yoga? “Vinyasa classes burn more calories than the hot yoga,” Lara told POPSUGAR. “Hot yoga makes you feel like you’re working harder than you actually are because your body is just trying to thermoregulate.” Basically, sweating more doesn’t mean you’re burning more calories. “The sweat you produce should come simply from physical exertion,” Liza said, not from temperature.
A more gentle yoga class, such as Hatha, won’t burn as many calories. But it can benefit your mental health and decrease stress levels while helping you be more mindful, all of which have weight-loss benefits as well.
How Often Should I Do Yoga to Lose Weight?
For the best weight-loss results, Liza recommended doing yoga three times a week. Continue to stay active and get your heart rate on the other three to four days as well, whether through cardio, weightlifting, or HIIT workouts of 45 minutes to an hour. (We recommend this dance workout for cardio, this Nike weightlifting workout, and this belly-targeting HIIT circuit, all 45 minutes in length.) And keep your nutrition in mind, too. “Exercise alone without dieting makes losing weight hard,” Jorianne said. “Weight loss occurs when you burn more calories than you consume.”
“Milia can look like whiteheads,
but they are actually tiny keratin cysts that form in a pore.
Since milia are encased under skin, they can sit there for months
bothering you unless they are extracted,” board-certified
Dr. Heather Downes
Milia are harmless, but many people want to be rid of them for cosmetic reasons. Dermatologists typically puncture the skin with a sterile instrument and then use a tool called a comedone extractor to squeeze them out of the skin. According to Healthline, chemical peels and topical retinoids may also be helpful in clearing away milia.
Rosacea can cause red patches and bumps on the skin.
“Patients with rosacea have very
sensitive skin. Their skin gets easily irritated by sunlight,
cold wind, and irritating skin products. As a result, their skin
can turn red and form small. temporary pink bumps and pustules
that look like acne, but are actually bumps of inflammation,”
explained Dr. Downes.
Periorificial dermatitis can cause “breakouts” around the nose and mouth.
Periorificial dermatitis causes clusters of small, itchy, and
sometimes sore red bumps on the face. When the condition affects
the lower half of the face, it may be known by the more specific
term of perioral dermatitis.
If you think you have body acne,
you may want to make sure it’s not actually folliculitis. This is
a condition in which
normal hair follicles become
inflamed or infected,
resulting in small red bumps. It most commonly occurs on the
chest, back, arms, and legs.
“The bumps look like acne, but if
you look closely, you will see the pattern follows hair your
follicles. This condition is usually caused by bacteria but can
sometimes be caused by yeast in the skin,” board-certified
Jerome Potozkin told
“Some might mistake keratosis
pilaris for acne, but it’s a genetic condition that occurs when
the skin doesn’t exfoliate normally and the keratin blocks the
pores, causing these tiny bumps,” Dr. Debra Jaliman, dermatologist and assistant professor of
dermatology at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, told
“Chickenpox is quite commonly
mistaken for acne. That is because it causes an itchy rash along
with small blisters that are filled with fluid,” Dr.
Hardik Soni, emergency
medicine physician and medical director of Ethos Spa, Skin, and
Laser Center, told INSIDER.
Dr. Soni told INSIDER that staph
infections often cause pimple-like boils, bumps, and redness that
can be easily mistaken for acne. Unlike normal pimples, staph
infections can process to pus-filled blisters or large patches of
One of the most alarming types of
acne-mimickers is a type of skin cancer called basal cell
“Basal cell carcinoma is the most
common skin cancer and is often mistaken for a pimple. Pimples
usually resolve over days to weeks. If instead, it lasts several
months, you should see a board-certified dermatologist as it
might need to be biopsied to rule out skin cancer,” Dr. Downes
The good news is that basal cell
carcinoma is considered a low-risk skin cancer. According to the
Skin Cancer Foundation, it is only life-threatening
in exceedingly rare
“The risk of it spreading in the
is close to
zero. It is just
locally destructive to adjacent tissues,” explained Dr.
The typical treatment involves
surgically removing the affected area. Even though basal cell
carcinoma isn’t usually an aggressive type of cancer,
it can result in scarring if left
untreated for too long. Get any suspicious marks or bumps checked
sooner rather than later to catch skin cancer early.
This cat tent is super easy to make – you really just need a t-shirt, some wire hangers and a piece of cardboard. As a bonus, it really only takes five minutes, so if your cat ignores it you didn’t put too much effort in. 😉
Step 1: What You’ll Need:
a medium t-shirt
a 15 x 15-inch piece of cardboard (mine was 13×15 and a little wonky)
two wire hangers
something to cut the hangers with and help bend them – I used a large pair of pliers. 🙂
Step 2: Cut the Hangers
Cut off both squiggly ends. I untwisted mine and then cut, but that’s not really necessary.
Step 3: Shape the Hangers + Reinforce the Cardboard If Needed
Shape the hangers so they look like the above – try to make them smooth and pretty uniform. You want two graceful curves that will go from corner to corner of your piece of cardboard.
I also took this time to tape on a couple supports to the cardboard and tape all around the edges for a little more stability. This is really only necessary if you’re using a piece of cardboard with a crease in it.
Step 4: Poke a Hole in Each Corner
You should be able to use the end of the hanger to do this!
Make sure it’s at least a half inch in from each edge and not too large.
Step 5: Tape the Two Hangers Together
Cross the two hangers in the middle and make sure all the ends touch the surface you’re working on. Tape them together really well so they don’t shift.
Push the ends through the holes you just made in the corners.
Step 6: Bend the Ends and Tape Them Down
Bend at least an inch on the bottom of each hanger so it sits against the bottom of the cardboard. Tape the ends down flat against the cardboard – make sure you tape it well so it’s nice and smooth and won’t snag the shirt when you pull it over!
Step 7: Check and Make Sure Everything’s Lined Up
At this point you can bend the wire so that it looks nicer – fiddle around with it and use the pliers if you need to straighten it out a bit. 🙂
Step 8: Create a Tent!
Pull the shirt over the tent frame and position it so the neck hole is in the front middle and the bottom of the shirt is trailing behind the tent frame.
Flip the whole thing up so the bottom is facing you and the hole is pointing upwards.
Fold up the excess from the bottom of the shirt and tighten it up so the neck hole is taut and safety pin the bottom in place. Then pull the sleeves tight and safety pin them in place too.
As you can see in the last image, it should be pretty tight over the frame. Keep tucking and safety pinning until it’s ready!
As you can see in the last image, it should be pretty tight over the frame. Keep tucking and safety pinning until it’s ready!
(Yes, I know it would make sense to cut it, but I decided to leave it whole and safety pin it instead so it would be easy to remove and wash. :D)
Step 9: Give It to Your Cat!
I put a paper bag inside as a floor since it’s been pretty hot here and a blanket would be waaaaay too warm. I also put a little catnip inside as a bonus.
Coughing is one of those irritating symptoms that usually indicates a deeper health concern. Often, it can be hard to isolate the cough and figure out exactly why you are experiencing this uncomfortable condition. Many people simply reach for the cough syrup without a second thought, searching for some measure of relief. However, it is essential that you understand what different coughs mean and what they reveal about your health.
Any kind of cough is merely the body’s natural defense mechanism. When you cough, your body is trying to remove foreign or unwanted objects from your airway. In short, it is the final protective barrier between your mouth and lungs and is an essential tool for keeping a healthy airway.
Though it is difficult to pinpoint the source of a cough without medical intervention, these common conditions are often directly related to distinctive coughs that can help you narrow down an underlying cause.
Identifying factors: Usually a dry cough at first and turns into a wet cough with green, yellow, red, or rust-tinged mucus. The wet cough usually develops after a few days.
This is a bacterial or viral infection of the lungs and will be treated accordingly by your primary care physician. If it is bacterial, your doctor will usually prescribe antibiotics. Viral pneumonia is treated simply with rest and time. Keep in mind that you should always spit out extra mucus, as swallowing it can lead to an irritated stomach lining.
If you have pneumonia you may also experience fever, chills, trouble breathing, and pain when breathing in deeply or coughing.
Identifying factors: This is usually a hacking cough that produces excessive amounts of mucus in the morning and often gets better as the day progresses.
COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is usually caused and exacerbated by smoking. This is a disease that includes both chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Emphysema causes the air sacs in your lungs to lose elasticity while chronic bronchitis is due to swelling in the lining of the lungs. COPD is usually treated with medication such as bronchodilators and inhaled steroids. It is also essential to stop smoking and depending on the severity, you may need oxygen therapy to restore lung health.
If you have COPD you may also notice persistent shortness of breath that is worsened with physical activity, chest tightness, wheezing, and fatigue.
Identifying factors: An asthmatic cough is usually a dry cough with a rattling or wheezing sound present in the lungs. It usually worsens with exercise or at night.
Asthma can be a serious condition and should not be taken lightly. If you suspect asthma, it is important to get a diagnosis from your doctor and begin to focus on taking deep, full breaths as soon as possible.
This condition causes inflamed airways and may be accompanied by fatigue, shortness of breath, and chest tightness.
Identifying factors: This can be either a wet or dry cough and is caused by mucus trickling down the back of the throat and irritating nerve endings.
Postnasal drip is due to allergies or a cold and is the most common type of cough. A cough related to allergies may also be accompanied by sneezing or itching while cold symptoms may cause congestion and a sore throat. You may also notice that your cough gets worse at night.
Time and patience will usually remedy the common cold, and a spoonful of local, raw honey before bed can help you sleep. If you suspect an allergy, try avoiding the source and consider taking an over the counter antihistamine.
Indicating factors: Dry, spasmodic cough that usually starts or becomes worse when you are lying down or eating.
GERD, or more commonly known as acid reflux, occurs when acid from your stomach backs up into your esophagus. This condition is the second most common cause of chronic coughing, comprising about 40% of cases. When food passes through the esophagus into the stomach, a valve, known as the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) closes, which prevents food or acid from coming back up the throat. GERD is caused by an untimed relaxation of the LES which causes acid to flow backward from the stomach.
In 75% of cases, chronic cough is the only symptom of acid reflux, so it is vital to be aware of this condition. Treatments vary, so it is best to consult your doctor for an appropriate diagnosis and course of action regarding GERD.
Health and fitness expert Jillian Michaels says that in order to burn fat, you need to strengthen your muscles and burn calories.
Michaels says that moves like crunches aren’t always effective on their own, Instead, she suggests focusing on exercises like push ups and planks, which target multiple muscles and therefore burn more calories.
Michaels also says eating foods high in healthy estrogens, getting enough sleep, and managing stress can help combat stomach fat.
Weight loss is achieved by focusing on two things: diet and exercise.
Fat burn, similarly, is achieved by building your workouts around two goals: strengthening muscles and burning calories.
That’s according to Jillian Michaels, health and fitness expert and creator of the Jillian Michaels app.
Michaels says that many people fall into the trap of thinking that they can “spot reduce fat.” As a result they come to rely on moves like crunches, which specifically target the abs. Moves like these only condition and strengthen the ab muscles, though, and Michaels says that alone won’t get you a six pack.
In order to burn the fat off the top of those muscles – or any other muscle on the body – you need to burn calories, and to do that you need to focus on exercises that target multiple muscles, Michaels says.
According to Michaels, exercises that work more than one part of the body simultaneously are extremely effective at burning calories. She uses planks as an example, saying that they target your entire core, as well as chest, shoulders, triceps, and quads.
She says push-ups are another exercise that works other muscles in addition to the abs.
Besides working out, Michaels says managing stress and estrogen levels can play a role in burning stomach fat specifically. She says that where you store fat depends on your hormone levels.
Jillian “The more testosterone dominant you are, the more you’ll store belly fat,” Michaels said. “The more estrogen dominant you are, the more you’ll store fat in your lower body, which is why you don’t ever really see men with cellulite unless they have some sort of severe hormone imbalance.”
Jillian Michaels recommends eating foods high in healthy estrogens, such as flax, yams, and fermented soy to help combat stomach fat. Otherwise, she suggests getting enough sleep and trying to keep stress at a minimum.
What’s Body Fat Percentage, and How Is It Measured?
“Your body fat percentage represents the total amount of fat mass you have,” explained NASM-certified personal trainer and POPSUGAR Assistant Fitness Editor Tamara Pridgett. This is a combination of two different types of fat: essential body fat and storage fat. Essential fat is needed to protect your organs and joints, to keep you warm, and to help with reproduction. Storage fat is stored energy in the form of adipose tissue, and it’s the fat people tend to see on their bodies.
You can have your body fat percentage measured by taking skinfold measurements, which aren’t too accurate, even if taken by a professional. Gyms also can have you use an InBody machine that’s similar to stepping on a scale. It sends a bioelectrical current throughout your body, measuring body fat percentage. This also isn’t the most accurate.
A DEXA scan or a BodPod test are two of the most accurate ways to measure body fat percentage. These are usually only offered at specialized clinics and are pricey – around $250 to $300. What’s helpful about these in terms of your six-pack showing is that they can break down the exact percentages of where fat is distributed throughout your body.
What Body Fat Percentage Do I Need to See My Abs?
Many trainers agree that it’s difficult to give a specific percentage of body fat that allows for abdominal visibility. Certified personal trainer Virginia Kinkel, who has been operating and analyzing DEXA scans for five years, said that where you store fat, how much fat, and how much muscle you have will determine whether or not your abs show. “Two people with the exact same body fat percentage can store it completely differently. One person may have abs, one person may not,” she said.
Although there isn’t one specific body fat percentage you need to see abs since everyone’s fat is distributed differently, there is a body fat percentage range you can aim for. NSCA-certified personal trainer, chiropractor, and owner of Movement Upgraded Ryan Hosler said that for men, if you’re around six to 17 percent body fat, your abs should be noticeably visible. For women, the range is 14 to 24 percent body fat. Definition will start to show on the higher end (17 percent for men, 24 percent for women), and your abs will become more sculpted as that number lowers.
Oftentimes, we can focus heavily on achieving a specific body fat percentage. This can be important for those managing weight-related chronic disease like heart disease and diabetes. But registered dietitian Rachel Fine, MS, RD, CDN, owner of To the Pointe Nutrition, who specializes in sports nutrition, warns that it’s critical to make sure that whatever body fat percentage you’re aiming for, you make sure it still allows for your body’s basal metabolism to function properly.
“Oftentimes, I will see athletes strive for extremely low body fat percentage, which cause hormonal disruptions that impair long-term health and performance,” she explained. “The body’s fat stores act as a direct moderator for several hormones, including bone building and appetite regulators. Without enough body fat, we risk a future of brittle bones and chronic hunger.”
One of the biggest concerns people begin to have as they age is osteoporosis. Just the thought of the bones breaking owing to even a nudge is painful, imagine going through it! Is yoga good for osteoporosis? Research states that yoga can help reduce the symptoms of osteoporosis or even reduce the condition. Let us dig a little deeper and figure out the connection between yoga and osteoporosis.
What Is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a degenerative disease. In this condition, the bones are weakened, and you are at a constant risk of having fractured bones. People have the highest bone density in their early 20s. As you age, the bone mass reduces due to various reasons. When there is too much breakdown of the bones and too little is built back, the bones tend to get brittle, resulting in fractures. Low levels of estrogen in women, low testosterone levels in men, lack of calcium, and vitamin D, sedentary lifestyles – all of these can be causes of osteoporosis.
How Does Yoga Help With Osteoporosis?
Yoga is a sort of strength training that helps you balance and align your body the right way. When your body is properly aligned, and you can balance, you automatically reduce probable injury. The standing poses strengthen your hips, which are sometimes the most affected by osteoporosis. Mild back bends build strength in the spine and decompress the vertebrae. Yoga also improves the circulation of blood in the body, which means better absorption of nutrients. But to benefit from yoga for osteoporosis, you have to practice it for 30 days at least five days a week. Having said this, you should not overdo the practice either. Start slowly with simple asanas, and then increase the time and the level of difficulty as you progress. You will notice significant changes eventually. But beware of some yoga poses to avoid with osteoporosis! You must consult your doctor before you begin yoga. You should also speak to your yoga instructor about your condition before you start practicing.
7 Powerful Asanas In Yoga For Osteoporosis
Ardha Pincha Mayurasana
Also Known As – Padahastasana, Hasta Padasana, Standing Forward Bend
Benefits – This asana stretches, tones, and strengthens the bones in the lower spine, legs, and hips. It also ensures that every part of the body is oxygenated and balanced. It works on the reproductive system and improves hormonal imbalances. Just ease into the asana. Do not push yourself too much when you begin, or else you will be left with an injury. With practice, you can progress.
How To Do It – Stand straight while placing your palms on your hips. Breathe in, and bend your hips as you breathe out. Place the palms next to your feet on the floor. Place the feet parallel to each other. Push the torso forward and extend your spine while lifting the tailbone. Hold the pose for a few seconds, and release.
2. Virabhadrasana II
Also Known As –Warrior Pose II
Benefits –This asana is amazing because it works on your arms, spine, and legs. It strengthens the muscles as well as the bones. This asana also helps improve the balance in the body. It helps with better circulation and hormonal imbalances too.
How To Do It –Widen your legs, placing them hip-width apart. Twist the right heel, pointing the toes outwards. Pivot with the left foot. Ensure that the arch of your left foot is in line with the right foot. Lower your hips and radiate all your energy out as you stretch out your arms. The arms must be in line with the shoulders. Turn your gaze to the front, and take long, deep breaths. Hold the pose. Release, and repeat on the other side.
3. Ardha Chandrasana
Also Known As –Warrior Pose II
Benefits –This asana is a balancing pose. It not only improves your ability to balance with the weak bones, but it also strengthens the bones in the legs, spine, and arms. This asana improves the nutrient absorption through blood circulation.
How To Do It –Place your feet hip-width apart. Now, lift your right foot off the ground, and bend your body to the left, bringing your left arm to the ground for support. Once you are comfortable, place your right leg parallel to the ground, or lift it as much as you comfortably can. Raise your right arm up, and turn your gaze towards it. Hold the pose for a few seconds. Release, and repeat on the other side.
4. Utthita Parsvakonasana
Also Known As –Extended Side Angle Pose
Benefits –This asana stretches and strengthens the legs. It also works on the arms and the back. This asana massages the abdominal organs and the reproductive system, and therefore, hormonal imbalances are also rectified. There is also an increase in the absorption of vitamin D and calcium in the bones due to the enhanced circulation of blood.
How To Do It –Place your legs hip-width apart, and twist the right foot such that the toes point outwards. Ground yourself using your left heel. Make sure that the arch of the left heel is in line with the right foot. Lower the hips and stretch out your arms. Now, slowly bend your body such that the right arm touches the right foot. Extend your left arm upwards. Look at your left arm and breathe. Release after a few seconds, and repeat on the other side.
5. Ardha Pincha Mayurasana
Also Known As –Dolphin Pose
Benefits –This asana works wonders in strengthening your spine. It lengthens the spine, removing all the stress trapped in it. It gives the bones and hamstrings a good stretch, which strengthens the legs. The circulation of blood is improved, and hormonal imbalances are rectified.
How To Do It –Come onto your fours, and gently lift your knees off the floor, thereby straightening them. You should ideally place your feet flat on the ground, but in case you cannot, it is ok to lift up on your heels. Take two steps backward, and once you are comfortable, work on the arms. Fold your arms at the elbows, and place your forearms flat on the ground clasping your palms. Lower your head to the ground, fitting your crown in your clasped palms. Your shoulders should come close to your ears. At this point, your body should resemble an inverted ‘V.’ Hold the pose, and breathe long and deep for a few seconds before you release.
6. Setu Bandhasana
Also Known As –Bridge Pose
Benefits –This asana works primarily on enhancing blood circulation and strengthening the back. It is a great asana for women as it works on their reproductive system and helps rectify the level of estrogen in the body.
How To Do It – Lie on your back, and fold your legs at the knees. Lift your back and hips off the floor. Also, ensure that you straighten the shoulders. Place your arms on the floor and stretch them out such that they reach your feet. Take three long breaths, and then release.
7. Urdhva Dhanurasana
Also Known As – Chakrasana, Wheel Pose, Upward Facing Bow Pose
Benefits –You must make sure you practice this asana only once you have been practicing yoga for osteoporosis for a while, and you have seen progress. It is an advanced asana for osteoporosis, and can work as a check to see how much you have progressed. This asana enhances oxygenation and nutrient absorption all over the body, owing to better blood circulation. It also helps to strengthen the arms and the legs. Since the reproductive organs get a good massage, this asana also helps to regulate the hormones in the body.
How To Do It –Lie on your back. Now, place your palms on either side of your head, with your fingers pointing towards your shoulders. Bend your knees and place your feet on the ground. Whenever you feel ready, push your palms and feet to raise the rest of your body off the ground. You need to be very careful while doing this. Hang your head, look backward and hold. Gently lower your body, placing your head on the ground first, and then your b
Have you ever tried any of these yoga poses for osteoporosis treatment? We definitely take our bones for granted. Don’t wait until it is too late! Regular yoga practice will prevent the problem from emerging altogether. But God forbid, if you do contract osteoporosis, you now know what to do.
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