(Last Updated on : 21-06-2014)
Yoga Asanas have a vital impact on the Endocrine glands. The Endocrine system is also favorably rejuvenated by the regular practice of Yoga asanas. The endocrine system comprises a set of glands secreting and releasing extra-cellular signaling molecules called the hormones. The endocrine system is influential in regulating metabolism, growth, development and puberty, tissue function and stimulating mood of the individual.
Endocrine glands influence all other structures in the human body including the nerves. These glands are called endocrine because they have an internal secretion as opposed to the external secretion like the 'bile' of the liver or the 'pancreatic juice' of the pancreas. External secretions leave the secreting glands through ducts such as the bile-duct or the pancreatic duct. But internal secretions are flushed directly into the blood current without leaving the glands of their origin. The endocrine glands are situated in different parts of the body; for instance the thyroid and the parathyroids are situated in the neck. The pineal and the pituitary are situated respectively in the brain and at the base of the brain. The adrenals or the suprarenal glands are situated above the kidneys. The ovaries in case of females are situated in the pelvis whereas the testes, the corresponding male reproductive glands, are in the scrotum.
It has been experimentally found that the endocrine secretions very powerfully affect the nervous system, thus maintaining the physiological balance of the human organisms. If these secretions suffer in quality, pathological conditions in the different parts of the human body are rapidly established. As soon as the secretion suffers, the cells of the most distant parts of the human body slowly begin to endure a change. Regulating the activity of these glands can be possible through Yoga asanas in a natural way. Yogic therapy aims at restoring the internal secretions to their normality by securing the health of the endocrine organs through Yogic practices.
The aim of Yoga in the context of endocrine system is to avoid any related disease to occur and ensure health by establishing and maintaining physiological harmony in the human body. The Pituitary Gland is the master gland that regulates secretion in all the other endocrine glands, and is directly controlled by the brain. The head stand is the most beneficial asana for this gland. Thyroid and parathyoid glands controls the basal metabolic rate, growth and cell processes. The parathyroid controls calcium and phosphate present in the blood. Both these glands are massaged by the postures of the shoulder stand. The secretion of pancreatic and adrenal glands is essential to life, affecting the emotional and physical state strongly. The pancreas produces insulin to regulate blood sugar, and is helped by the Peacock posture which massages the spleen as well. The female sex hormones or ovaries are the main source of oestrogen, the hormone that regulates the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, breast feeding and female physical appearance and sexuality. The male sex hormones or testes are the main source of the male sex hormones, testosterone. Regular practice of yoga asanas and pranayama keep these sex hormones in balance and helps to relieve sexual problems and disorders. The adrenal glands produce a variety of hormones such as adrenaline and cortisone that are important in controlling the stress and immunity. The twist posture is a powerful stimulant to the adrenal glands, causing them to release extra energy to boost your vitality level.
The endocrine system comprises all the important glands of the body and their main function is to generate and secrete hormones that help regulate the growth and metabolism, for reproductive purposes and also throughout pregnancy. Certain health conditions are caused as a result of the inability of glands to secrete or produce hormones. The regular practice of Yoga practically helps prevent the incidence of, as well as in dealing with, a number of diseases or health problems resulting from hormonal disharmony or dysfunction.