Yoga as a complementary treatment for smoking cessation: rationale, study design and participant characteristics of the Quitting-in-Balance study

Centers for Behavioral and Preventive Medicine, Alpert School of Medicine at Brown University, The Miriam Hospital, Providence, RI 02903, USA.
BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine (Impact Factor: 1.88). 04/2010; 10:14. DOI: 10.1186/1472-6882-10-14
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Tobacco smoking remains the leading preventable cause of death among American women. Exercise has shown promise as an aid to smoking cessation because it reduces weight gain and weight concerns, improves affect, and reduces nicotine withdrawal symptoms and cigarette craving. Studies have shown that the practice of yoga improves weight control, and reduces perceived stress and negative affect. Yoga practice also includes regulation of breathing and focused attention, both of which may enhance stress reduction and improve mood and well-being and may improve cessation outcomes.
This pilot efficacy study is designed to examine the rates of cessation among women randomized to either a novel, 8-week Yoga plus Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) smoking cessation intervention versus a Wellness program plus the same CBT smoking cessation intervention. Outcome measures include 7-day point prevalence abstinence at end of treatment, 3 and 6 months follow up and potential mediating variables (e.g., confidence in quitting smoking, self-efficacy). Other assessments include measures of mindfulness, spirituality, depressive symptoms, anxiety and perceived health (SF-36).
Innovative treatments are needed that address barriers to successful smoking cessation among men and women. The design chosen for this study will allow us to explore potential mediators of intervention efficacy so that we may better understand the mechanism(s) by which yoga may act as an effective complementary treatment for smoking cessation. If shown to be effective, yoga can offer an alternative to traditional exercise for reducing negative symptoms that often accompany smoking cessation and predict relapse to smoking among recent quitters.
ClinicalTrials NCT00492310.

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    ABSTRACT: Individuals with current or past depression are often smokers who are more nicotine dependent, more likely to suffer from negative mood changes after nicotine withdrawal, and more likely to relapse to smoking after quitting than the general population, which contributes to their higher morbidity and mortality from smoking-related illnesses. It remains unclear what interventions can help them to quit smoking. To evaluate the effectiveness of smoking cessation interventions, with and without specific mood management components, in smokers with current or past depression. In April 2013, we searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE, EMBASE, PsycINFO, other reviews, and asked experts for information on trials. Criteria for including studies in this review were that they had to be randomised controlled trials (RCTs) comparing smoking cessation interventions in adult smokers with current or past depression. Depression was defined as major depression or depressive symptoms. We included studies where subgroups of participants with depression were identified, either pre-stated or post hoc. The outcome was abstinence from smoking after six months or longer follow-up. We preferred prolonged or continuous abstinence and biochemically validated abstinence where available. When possible, we estimated pooled risk ratios (RRs) with the Mantel-Haenszel method (fixed-effect model). We also performed subgroup analyses, by length of follow-up, depression measurement, depression group in study, antidepressant use, published or unpublished data, format of intervention, level of behavioural support, additional pharmacotherapy, type of antidepressant medication, and additional nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). Forty-nine RCTs were included of which 33 trials investigated smoking cessation interventions with specific mood management components for depression. In smokers with current depression, meta-analysis showed a significant positive effect for adding psychosocial mood management to a standard smoking cessation intervention when compared with standard smoking cessation intervention alone (11 trials, N = 1844, RR 1.47, 95% CI 1.13 to 1.92). In smokers with past depression we found a similar effect (13 trials, N = 1496, RR 1.41, 95% CI 1.13 to 1.77). Meta-analysis resulted in a positive effect, although not significant, for adding bupropion compared with placebo in smokers with current depression (5 trials, N = 410, RR 1.37, 95% CI 0.83 to 2.27). There were not enough trial data to evaluate the effectiveness of fluoxetine and paroxetine for smokers with current depression. Bupropion (4 trials, N = 404, RR 2.04, 95% CI 1.31 to 3.18) might significantly increase long-term cessation among smokers with past depression when compared with placebo, but the evidence for bupropion is relatively weak due to the small number of studies and the post hoc subgroups for all the studies. There were not enough trial data to evaluate the effectiveness of fluoxetine, nortriptyline, paroxetine, selegiline, and sertraline in smokers with past depression.Twenty-three of the 49 trials investigated smoking cessation interventions without specific components for depression. There was heterogeneity between the trials which compared psychosocial interventions with standard smoking cessation counselling for both smokers with current and past depression. Therefore, we did not estimate a pooled effect. One trial compared nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) versus placebo in smokers with current depression and found a positive, although not significant, effect (N = 196, RR 2.64, 95% CI 0.93 to 7.45). Meta-analysis also found a positive, although not significant, effect for NRT versus placebo in smokers with past depression (3 trials, N = 432, RR 1.17, 95% CI 0.85 to 1.60). Three trials compared other pharmacotherapy versus placebo and six trials compared other interventions in smokers with current or past depression. Due to heterogeneity between the interventions of the included trials we did not estimate pooled effects. Evidence suggests that adding a psychosocial mood management component to a standard smoking cessation intervention increases long-term cessation rates in smokers with both current and past depression when compared with the standard intervention alone. Pooled results from four trials suggest that use of bupropion may increase long-term cessation in smokers with past depression. There was no evidence found for the use of bupropion in smokers with current depression. There was not enough evidence to evaluate the effectiveness of the other antidepressants in smokers with current or past depression. There was also not enough evidence to evaluate the group of trials that investigated interventions without specific mood management components for depression, including NRT and psychosocial interventions.
    Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) 08/2013; 8:CD006102. DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD006102.pub2 · 5.94 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This paper reviews the philosophical origins, current scientific evidence, and clinical promise of yoga and mindfulness as complementary therapies for addiction. Historically, there are eight elements of yoga that, together, comprise ethical principles and practices for living a meaningful, purposeful, moral and self-disciplined life. Traditional yoga practices, including postures and meditation, direct attention toward one's health, while acknowledging the spiritual aspects of one's nature. Mindfulness derives from ancient Buddhist philosophy, and mindfulness meditation practices, such as gentle Hatha yoga and mindful breathing, are increasingly integrated into secular health care settings. Current theoretical models suggest that the skills, insights, and self-awareness learned through yoga and mindfulness practice can target multiple psychological, neural, physiological, and behavioral processes implicated in addiction and relapse. A small but growing number of well-designed clinical trials and experimental laboratory studies on smoking, alcohol dependence, and illicit substance use support the clinical effectiveness and hypothesized mechanisms of action underlying mindfulness-based interventions for treating addiction. Because very few studies have been conducted on the specific role of yoga in treating or preventing addiction, we propose a conceptual model to inform future studies on outcomes and possible mechanisms. Additional research is also needed to better understand what types of yoga and mindfulness-based interventions work best for what types of addiction, what types of patients, and under what conditions. Overall, current findings increasingly support yoga and mindfulness as promising complementary therapies for treating and preventing addictive behaviors.
    Complementary therapies in medicine 06/2013; 21(3):244-52. DOI:10.1016/j.ctim.2013.01.008 · 2.22 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives Comparison groups are essential for accurate testing and interpretation of yoga intervention trials. However, selecting proper comparison groups is difficult because yoga comprises a very heterogeneous set of practices and its mechanisms of effect have not been conclusively established. Methods We conducted a systematic review of the control and comparison groups used in published randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of yoga. Results We located 128 RCTs that met our inclusion criteria; of these, 65 included only a passive control and 63 included at least one active comparison group. Primary comparison groups were physical exercise (43%), relaxation/meditation (20%), and education (16%). Studies rarely provided a strong rationale for choice of comparison. Considering year of publication, the use of active controls in yoga research appears to be slowly increasing over time. Conclusions Given that yoga has been established as a potentially powerful intervention, future research should use active control groups. Further, care is needed to select comparison conditions that help to isolate the specific mechanisms of yoga's effects.
    Complementary Therapies in Medicine 09/2014; 22(5). DOI:10.1016/j.ctim.2014.08.008 · 2.22 Impact Factor

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