Yoga Lifestyle Tips

Read these 5 Yoga Lifestyle Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Yoga tips and hundreds of other topics.

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Must I stop smoking if I practice yoga?

Yes or No

When you practice yoga, you are NOT REQUIRED to stop smoking. But, in all fairness I want to mention that after you begin your practice, you may find that you don't want to continue smoking.

Yoga stresses proper breathing and can improve your oxygen capacity. You might see the benefits and improvement are more apparent in others who don't smoke, and then decide to give up smoking yourself.
This is entirely a personal decision.

Do I have to change my lifestyle to practice yoga?

What Changes?

You may wonder if you need to change your lifestyle to practice yoga. The answer is NO. Yoga is not a religion. It doesn't require that you fast or abstain. You don't have to become a vegetarian or change your eating patterns. Nor do you have to give up drinking or smoking. However, you might notice that your tastes change after you begin to practice yoga. As you become healthier and in tune with your body, you MAY feel differently about the impacts overeating, smoking and drinking alcohol have on your body. I've practiced yoga for many years, and the biggest change in my lifestyle was that I'm more aware of my eating habits. I try to choose more natural foods whenever possible.

Do I have to follow a special diet if I do yoga?

Food Choices

First, to answer the question most people ask – No, you don't have to become a vegetarian to practice yoga. You don't have to follow any special diet. One thing you may find though is that you will become more conscious of your food choices. As you get more in tune with your body and what it needs, you may find you're choosing more healthful foods.

Do I have to follow a special diet if I do yoga?

Strict Practice

In a strict yoga practice, you'll find that people follow certain practices:

- They avoid Tamasic foods. These are things that are stale, tasteless, unripe, overripe or putrified. They include meat, mushrooms, and frozen, preserved, canned or overcooked foods.

- They avoid Rajasic foods such as onions, garlic, eggs coffee, tea, and hot peppers.

- They choose Sattvic products, which include cereals, fresh fruit and vegetables, natural fruit juices, milk, butter, beans, and honey.

Remember, this is NOT a requirement of a general yoga practice.

Is yoga a religion?

Religion or Not

People often ask if yoga is a religion. Yoga is NOT a religion.

In traditional yoga there are steps for guidance in leading a meaningful life, such as moral discipline, self-discipline and meditation. But there are no religious teachings involved in practicing yoga - no single creed, no religious obligations (like attending services), and no rituals where one must profess allegiance to certain beliefs.

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Guru Spotlight
Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.