International Yoga Day 2020: The need for managing mental stress has increased in the times of COVID-19 and before the condition becomes worst, here’s the time to do a self-check and realise that our body and mind need control. One way to do that is to adopt yoga in your lifestyle. Researches have shown that with the help of a yoga-based lifestyle, one can cure depression and other kinds of mental stress. We got in touch with celebrity yoga acharya and author of best-selling books on yoga – Ira Trivedi to give us insight about how yoga can be used to treat those who are suffering from mental illness or anxiety issues.Also Read - International Yoga Day: From Jennifer Aniston to Robert Downey Jr, HERE Are 10 Hollywood Celebrities Who Practice Yoga

Ira agreed that a strictly followed yoga lifestyle can cure depression and keep mental stress at bay but one needs to totally dedicate himself/herself to yoga practice. She said, “Yoga connects the mind, body, and breath. When that happens, your body is in synch and none of these issues (mental illness) can actually happen to you. The meaning of the word yoga means union. It immediately makes that body-mind-breath connection and this helps you stay both mentally and physically strong.” Also Read - Gearing Up! Baba Ramdev Conducts 'Yoga Protocol Rehearsal' In Haridwar Ahead Of International Yoga Day

She said that along with taking care of the breathing, maintaining posture, and aligning the body physically, yoga also helps in balancing the hormones. “Yoga works on our hormonal system. One of the major reasons behind depression is hormonal imbalance,” she said. But, does yoga have the power to treat depression in the absence of medicines? Ira said yes. She said it can only be achieved by practising a rigid routine. “If you practice yoga along with a very strict yogic lifestyle, it will cure mental illness. This means waking up very early in the morning and spending time with nature, eating a very satwik diet, maintaining a proper biorhythm, doing the various yoga kriyas – if you can do all of that, then it can cure depression.” Also Read - International Yoga Day 2020: Book For Kids Has Peppa Pig Enjoying Yoga With Friends!

What about a person who can’t do away with a hectic work schedule and can’t adopt a full-fledged yogic lifestyle? Can yoga still prove to be helpful in that case? Ira suggested that if a person takes out just enough time to practice Pranayama along with performing Suryanamaskar regularly, s/he can be cured. “A daily practice of Pranayama along with Suryanamaskar is the best way to fight mental stress. If your body feels light, your mind feels good. My mantra is ‘stretch, not stress’.”