Skip to main content

Table 3 Themes identified by young adults: The influence of yoga practice on eating and physical activity (n = 46)

From: Yoga’s potential for promoting healthy eating and physical activity behaviors among young adults: a mixed-methods study

Theme Example Quotes
Eating Behaviors Motivated to make healthier choices “Because I know I’m trying to improve myself by doing yoga and I think I shouldn’t go and get a Subway sub. Or if I do, I get the healthier version. [Yoga] puts me in a mindset, like, I’m trying to be better, so then I eat better”
More mindful eating “[As a result of yoga] I tend to choose the things that fuel [my body] rather than the things that are just available and easy to eat and taste delicious.”
Management of stress and emotional eating “When you’re feeling less anxiety, more peaceful, more hopeful about things, then, you don’t see the need to consume everything in your house.”
More healthy food cravings “After you’re sweating for 60 min [in yoga], I get out and crave good food.”
The yoga community “I became closer friends with people that did yoga who also happened to eat healthier. I spent more time in places where people were interested in being healthy.”
Physical Activity Activity due to yoga practice “In the winter I don’t do any sports, so [Yoga’s] my one way of moving.”
Motivated to do other forms of physical activity “[Yoga] gave me enough confidence to go out and join the gym and get a personal trainer, and I don’t think I would have necessarily done those steps had it not been for starting out with the yoga and seeing results with that and feeling more comfortable with myself.”
Improved capacity to be physically active “I coach basketball…before that, I couldn’t get out and do stuff, and I started yoga, and I’m able to… run up and down with the high school kids now and play basketball with them. So [yoga] helps me be more active.”
Complemented an already active lifestyle “[Yoga] definitely makes my body feel better… but I definitely try to be very active, so in my mind I would say my activity level encompasses yoga versus yoga making me more active.”