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Exercise and Yoga for Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the body lacks sufficient thyroid hormone. Since the main purpose of the thyroid hormone is to "run the body's metabolism", it is understandable that people with this condition will have symptoms associated with a slow metabolism. Over five million Americans have this common medical condition.  The hormone called thyroxin plays a major role in metabolism of the body and this hormone is secreted, stored and released in the body by the gland called thyroid.

As the name suggest, hypothyroidism means underactive thyroid as hypo means low, less, under or little. In this condition, the thyroid gland produces less thyroxin hormone that is not sufficient to the body’s requirement and therefore, the body lacks the hormone and ends up with metabolism complications.

While hypothyroidism is treated and controlled by the supplementation of thyroxin, exercise and yoga are two of the best techniques by which can easily help keep he r thyroid gland in its normal state.

Health professionals currently recommend that adults spend at least 30 minutes per day engaging in moderate exercise, five days per week. This has been shown not only to improve general health and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, but also to increase the body's sensitivity to insulin, thus lowering the risk of Type 2 diabetes.

Less than 10 minutes of intense exercise per week can be more effective at reducing diabetes risk than current recommendations of 30 minutes per day, according to a new study conducted by researchers from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland, and published in the journal BMC Endocrine Disorders.

"It is possible to gain significant health benefits from only 7.5 minutes of exercise each week -- if that is all that you find the time to do," researcher James A. Timmons said. "This is a dramatically different view from current thinking."

Light exercises like brisk walking, treadmill and aerobics on a regular basis are very useful. They improve the blood circulation in your body and therefore very helpful in thyroid hormone production.

You can also include various sports which are both fun and good exercise. Since hypothyroidism brings weight gain,  sports that burn the calories are preferred. Playing squash,for example, is one of the hiighest calorie burning sports. Other sports include tennis, basketball, football and running.

Swimming is another good way to keep your body fit and to keep your hormones level. You need not go for different kinds of strokes in swimming like butterfly etc. but you should swim at least for ½ - 1 hour early in the morning with water that does not contain any chlorine. Many naturopaths suggest taking baths in natural springs as an excellent way to keep your body fit and to boost your metabolism.

Yoga like Hatha Yoga, Pranayama (the breathing techniques), Shavasana (the dead posture), simhasana (the lion posture) and kapalbhanti (another type of breathing technique) help keep the thyroid healthy, but they also boost your health keeping you hale and hearty. Latest research  also supports Yoga and breathing technique (Pranayama) to be two of the best methods to control any type of diseases.

Some of the Yoga gurus suggest that meditation plays an important role in keeping your hormonal level normal. We know very well that hormones get disturbed during various human emotions such as anger and love. Meditation helps control brain chemicals and neurotransmission. There are various types of meditations and you can perform any of one that gives you peace of mind. Meditation along with Yoga brings stability in the mind, body and soul.

 Sources for this story include: www.reuters.com.

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The Canary Club is an educational advisory group with a team of medical advisors headed by Richard Shames, M.D.