GABA GABA! Yoga as a Medical Treatment?

I got hooked on yoga because it made me feel good. I could sit here and tell you that my body and soul became one and I went through some great transformational awakening…but it just isn’t true. At times I found yoga class quite annoying, actually. I was stressed. I could barely sit still.  But I kept returning because I always left class feeling happy.  The more often I practiced the better I felt off the mat. And five years later here I am running my own yoga business (happily!).

What is it about yoga that builds occasional practitioners into devotional yogis? Where does this ‘good feeling’ come from?

Let me introduce you to GABA. G-A-B-A is a chemical the nervous system uses to calm down. It stands for gamma-aminobutyric.  In 2007 researchers at Boston University School of Medicine actually did a study that found practicing yoga elevates GABA levels in the brain. So more yoga, equals more GABA, equals more calm, right? Correct!

More and more medical scientists are considering yoga’s immense health benefits and its role in the medical world. Depression and Anxiety Disorders both are associated with low levels of GABA. Medications, like Valium, are manufactured to assist in the simulation of this chemical in the body. If yoga was adopted as a serious medical treatment, could we lessen the use of prescriptions and most of all, their side effects? Better yet, could we use it as a no-drug treatment for sensitive individuals such as rehabilitating addicts or struggling teenagers that wouldn’t do well on prescriptions?

Obviously, I am not a doctor, I don’t have the answers and I know every medical case and individual varies. But if yoga has fostered a greater sense of happiness, contentment and confidence for others, what is there to lose?

I truly believe that yoga has transformational power. As a professional in the industry I have personally experienced it and witnessed it in others. I founded Unique Yoga Events in an effort to provide the public with easier access to passionate, experienced yoga instructors. Our mission is to bring yoga to more people in more places. By providing classes like Corporate Yoga, Teen Yoga, Senior Yoga, Bridal Yoga and much more, we help our customers find balance in everyday life.  I guess in a way we are spreading the GAMA 🙂


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