Bikram yoga is an excellent type of yoga for weight loss. A single session of Bikram yoga can burn up to a whopping 600 to 1500 calories. Needless to say this amount will depend upon how much effort you put into each class and how strong your poses are.
In order to maximize the benefits of Bikram yoga, a diet change is recommended (though not imperative). If you want to see results faster, it would be better to change your diet for hot yoga. While there is no specific Bikram yoga diet plan, there are general guidelines about what to eat before and after a Bikram yoga class as well as what food is beneficial when practicing this form of yoga. These include:
- Eat several small light meals throughout the day instead of three heavy ones.
- Make sure that your meals consist of some form of protein and whole grains to keep energy levels up.
- Keep your consumption of fatty foods, caffeine, refined sugar and dairy products to a minimum.
- Many people insist that their digestion changes after practicing Bikram yoga for a while. Spicy foods and junk foods now sit heavily in the stomach and are no longer as enjoyable as before making weight loss and calorie control a whole lot easier.
- What you can eat before a Bikram yoga class differs from person to person. Some people feel more energetic in class if they have eaten a small nutritious snack or some fruit an hour or so before class. Others insist that they can only practice on an empty stomach or if they keep a gap of four hours or more between their last meal and their yoga class. After a few sessions of your own, you will know what works best for your body.
- Bikram yoga tends to make you ravenous. After a class it would be better to keep on hand some healthy energy boosters such as nuts or a banana or some fresh fruit or vegetable juice.
- As you continue your practice of Bikram yoga you will become more attuned with your body and begin to differentiate between actual hunger pangs and eating out of boredom or for emotional reasons.
- A lot of people believe that Bikram yoga demands a vegetarian diet. This is not true though you may benefit from switching to leaner meats such as chicken or turkey over beef or pork. The main goal of a Bikram yoga diet is to provide the proper nutrition and help the body maximize its capability.
- An ideal Bikram yoga food plan would involve meals that are unprocessed and devoid of harmful additives and other chemicals. Try to buy mainly organic produce and include lots of fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet.
- The most important addition to any Bikram yoga diet is water. It is absolutely necessary to drink at least two to three liters of water a day to stay hydrated and balance out electrolyte levels in the body. Some Bikram yoga teachers encourage students to drink at least a liter of water before a session.
Bikram Yoga Diet Tips
- For the best results, try and make at least three classes a week or ten classes a month. Bikram yoga teachers insist that this is the minimum amount of sessions needed to reap the benefits of this dynamic yoga. If you can do more classes, aim for five days a week and watch how your body gets transformed. These classes have to be complimented with a proper diet recommended by your yoga practitioner.
- Keep in mind that weight loss with Bikram yoga is a gradual process and therefore you will have to keep to the diet for a longer time.
- Always consult your doctor before beginning Bikram yoga classes or any diet plan. The rigors of Bikram yoga may not suit everyone and it is better to get the all clear from yoru doctor before committing to any number of classes.
Bikram Yoga Diet Benefits
- Burning between 600 to 1500 calories per session
- Improving the lymphatic system and helping flush the body of toxins
- Improving metabolism and making weight loss easier
- Lessening unhealthy food cravings
- Treating any digestive problems
- Building muscle tone