Studies have shown yoga to be beneficial for both physical and mental health, but the biological mechanisms for why have been poorly understood -- until now. New research fr
om the University of Oslo has determined that yoga practices can have an almost immediate impact on gene expression, particularly in immune cells.

"The data suggests that yoga and related practices result in rapid gene expression alterations which may be the basis for their longer term cell biological and higher level health effects."

Reference: 
1. Qu S, Olafsrud SM, Meza-Zepeda LA, Saatcioglu F (2013) Rapid Gene Expression Changes in Peripheral Blood Lymphocytes upon Practice of a Comprehensive Yoga Program. PLoS ONE 8(4): e61910. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0061910