“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Rarely have those words rung more true than in our current environment of COVID-19-forced school closings, event cancellations, and mounting worldwide concerns over a pandemic that threaten to spin out of control.
It is a time when most of us are feeling worried and powerless in the face of all the changes unfolding around us. Should we cease normal contact with friends and co-workers? Should we stop the normal social interactions we enjoy and relish? How can we keep our loved ones safe and healthy?
There are many questions, and so far, few answers. Yet, as always during difficult times, the one recourse we have is to turn within and look for deeper resources: in our own inner strength and in the wisdom and knowledge we have available to us from outside sources.
In this regard, the knowledge of yoga and the ancient Ayurvedic wisdom give us a particularly rich resource to draw on. Both yoga and Ayurveda provide numerous insights into how we can support our daily health, build greater immunity against disease, and even slow the rate at which our body ages.
And best of all, all of these are not isolated benefits, As you use yogic techniques to improve well-being, you also build greater strength and immunity against disease. As you build greater strength and immunity against illness, you also reduce your risk of age-related chronic diseases and slow the rate at which your body ages. It’s all one package.
In modern terms, the knowledge of how to work with our mind and body to foster greater health, strength and well-being and prevent disease is referred to as lifestyle medicine. Yoga, we might say, is the first form of lifestyle medicine, i.e. the systematic application of daily habits to prevent disease, foster greater health, and even slow aging.
In this free download, renowned yoga therapist, physical therapist and author Dr. Ginger Garner discusses the applications of yoga as lifestyle medicine with a special focus on how yoga can help us take greater control of how healthy and well we stay over time.
While we are currently mostly concerned about how we can prevent becoming infected with the COVID-19 virus, we would benefit from focusing on preventive measures that also help us prevent some of the preventable long-term conditions. Two out of three people over 65 suffer from more than one chronic disease like high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and so on. Yet, we know that 80% of these diseases are preventable.
Yoga as lifestyle medicine teaches us that through proper application of the key lifestyle factors that impact our day to day strength and immunity, we also can reap numerous other benefits. Lifestyle medicine takes the concept of prevention to a new level. We now know that healthy habits, healthy lifestyle does a lot more than preventing disease – it can actually make us look and feel younger while at the same time making us less susceptible to both infectious diseases and longer term, chronic illness.
In this interview Ginger discusses:
· How yoga offers a nearly complete system of lifestyle medicine in and of itself, and how to supplement and adjust yoga to make sure everyone can reap the benefits.
· Why you need to pay attention to subclinical imbalances, i.e. markers you can screen for that indicate disease preconditions long before disease actually develops.
· How many serious health issues, even many types of cancer, can be averted by paying attention to these subclinical factors
· Why labs is an important screening tool and why the standard way many health professional read labs may miss important warning signs of e.g. pre-diabetes, chronic inflammation, and so on
· The new science of epigenetics, which shows that gene expression is variable and even genetic risk factors can be modulated by lifestyle
· How to influence genetic expression to make your genes work for, not against you
· And much, much more!
You may also enjoy Dr. Garner’s course, Self-Care Hacks for Short-Term Sanity and Long-Term Health – Yoga and Lifestyle Medicine.