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Most doctors think of yoga as "light stress relief," and a way to stay flexible. But yoga not only heals your injuries, it reverses the biological age of your cells, tissues, and organs.

Today, I’ll introduce you to the anti-aging powers of yoga, and show you an easy but very effective position you can practice at home right now.

East Meets West for a More Energetic Life

In her own words, "Yoga is not an overnight miracle cure, it’s a journey — and the effects last a lifetime. But even in a week or a few days, you’ll feel better."

"It’s all about linking your breathing to the movements of your body. Most people breathe in a very shallow way. But when you breathe deeply, it changes everything — your body and mind."

As an anti-aging physician, I know lung power is one of the best predictors of how long you’ll live. So bringing more awareness to your breath is essential in anti-aging medicine.

How well you breathe determines how long you’ll stay active and healthy.

The medical journal Chest did a 29-year follow-up to the Buffalo Health Study, which followed over 1,100 people up to age 89. The researchers found that the better your lungs work, the less likely you are to die of any cause. The correlation was even stronger for heart disease.

What’s more, scientific studies show yoga can reverse heart disease. One study, the Lifestyle Heart Trial, found that yoga shrinks the fatty plaque deposits that block coronary arteries. And yoga de-stresses you by increasing levels of the brain-chemical GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), which you need for a calm mind.

The list of yoga’s anti-aging benefits is long. It can:

Kata added: "Yoga helps you learn about yourself and listen to your body. It increases your flexibility, releases stress, teaches you how to handle challenges, grasp opportunities and respond to life in a more joyful way."

Research also shows that yoga has a direct anti-aging impact on your cells. And the good news is that it works for everyone — no matter how old you are. Kata told me she has students in their 70s, 80s and even 90s, who all live healthy, youthful lives — thanks to yoga.

One study published earlier this year revealed that practicing yoga slows the effects of aging by increasing the amount of the enzyme telomerase, which affects the age of your cells.5

Telomerase stimulates the growth and rebuilding of your telomeres. And the longer your telomeres, the younger your biological age and the younger you feel.

But yoga not only slows the aging process. It delays and even prevents the onset of disease, because it reduces oxidative stress and inflammation on your cells — the chief cause of most chronic diseases.

Kata’s Favorite Anti-Aging Yoga Position

As Kata points out, yoga "is for everyone — no matter what your age or condition."

Here’s her favorite "starting position." It’s a great stress-reliever and will have lasting anti-aging effects on your body.

It’s called Legs Up the Wall. This "therapeutic pose" is a restorative and gentle inversion that helps to promote balance and well-being throughout your entire body.

Beginners may find this position more relaxing with a support — either a firm, long pillow or two folded blankets.

Kata added that this posture is not recommended if you suffer from glaucoma or other eye problems, heart problems, serious neck injury, hiatal hernia or spondylolisthesis — or after the third month of pregnancy.