Ayurveda and yoga in cardiovascular diseases.

Department of Community and Preventive Medicine, New York Medical College, Valhalla, New York 10595, USA.
Cardiology in Review (Impact Factor: 3.24). 01/2005; 13(3):155-62. DOI: 10.1097/01.crd.0000128730.31658.36
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Ayurveda is derived from 2 Sanskrit words, namely, "Ayus" and "Veda," meaning life and knowledge, respectively. It literally means science of life. Ayurveda, of which yoga is an integral part, is widely practiced in India and is gaining acceptance in many countries around the world. It is a comprehensive and a holistic system, the focus of which is on the body, mind, and consciousness. The Ayurvedic treatment consists of the use herbal preparations, diet, yoga, meditation, and other practices. Based on the review of available studies, the evidence is not convincing that any Ayurvedic herbal treatment is effective in the treatment of heart disease or hypertension. However, the use of certain spices and herbs such as garlic and turmeric in an overall healthy diet is appropriate. Many herbs used by Ayurvedic practitioners show promise and could be appropriate for larger randomized trials. Yoga, an integral part of Ayurveda, has been shown to be useful to patients with heart disease and hypertension. Yoga reduces anxiety, promotes well-being, and improves quality of life. Its safety profile is excellent. Its use as a complementary therapeutic regimen under medical supervision is appropriate and could be worth considering.

1 Follower
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Traditional medicine is “health practices that were developed for centuries, incorporating knowledge, skills and practices based on beliefs and experiences of indigenous people from different cultures”. Indigenous medicine used plant, animal and mineral-based medicines, spiritual therapies, manual techniques and exercises to treat, diagnose and prevent illnesses. Despite the progress achieved in the last decades with modern medical and pharmacological products and new medicinal technology, in some Asian and African countries, up to 80% of the population relies on traditional for their primary health care needs. Although not always successful or effective, traditional medicine used to maintain good health, as well as to prevent, diagnose, improve or treat physical and mental illnesses with simple methods and a vast array of natural products extracted from plants, animals and microbes. Natural products that were used with success for various ailments for long time have provided considerable value to the modern pharmaceutical industry over the past half century, particularly in the therapeutic areas of infectious diseases and oncology. In this review we provide a comprehensive narrative of the progress achieved in the last decades by traditional medicine (Chinese, Ayurveda, herbal etc) and its adoption by WHO and the World Health Assembly. Also, how the natural products used in the past provided a useful platform to the modern pharmaceutical industry for diseases. The misuse of certain herbal remedies can cause harm. Safety concerns for traditional medicine were examined by better designed research, clinical trials and pharmacovigilance systems. Reverse pharmacology approaches inspired by traditional medicine offered a smart strategy for new drug candidates and facilitated for the development of rational synergistic botanical formulations. There are many international databases for natural products and their influence in discovering new materials for medical use.
    Pharmakeftiki 04/2014; 26(I):17-31.
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to analyze the effects of Hatha Yoga exercise on the body composition, serum lipids, and health-related fitness of obese middle-aged women. The subjects in the Hatha Yoga exercise group (n=9) were 18 obese middle-aged women that trained for 16 weeks and a control group (n=9). Body composition, serum lipids, and health-related fitness were measured in all of the subjects before the start of the training program and at the end of the 16 weeks. The findings of this study were as follows. Body weight, %BF, BMI, WHR, VFA, TC, TG, LDL-C, FFA, and HOMA-IR significantly decreased, whereas LBM, HDL-C, grip strength, back strength, push-ups, sit-ups, Harvard step test, and sitting trunk flexion significantly increased in the Hatha Yoga exercise group after 16 weeks. Therefore, regular and continuous Yoga exercise was effective in improving body composition, serum lipids, and health-related fitness. Consequently, Yoga exercise could be effective for preventing cardiovascular disease caused by obesity in middle-aged women.
    04/2011; 21(4). DOI:10.5352/JLS.2011.21.4.521
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objectives To critically evaluate the effectiveness of yoga as a treatment of hypertension. Methods Seventeen databases were searched from their inceptions to January 2014. Randomized clinical trials (RCTs) were included, if they evaluated yoga against any type of control in patients with any form of arterial hypertension. Risk of bias was estimated using the Cochrane criteria. Three independent reviewers performed the selection of studies, data extraction, and quality assessments. Results Seventeen trials met the inclusion criteria. Only two RCTs were of acceptable methodological quality. Eleven RCTs suggested that yoga leads to a significantly greater reduction in systolic blood pressure (SBP) compared to various forms of pharmacotherapy, breath awareness or reading, health education, no treatment (NT), or usual care (UC). Eight RCTs suggested that yoga leads to a significantly greater reduction in diastolic blood pressure (DBP) or night-time DBP compared to pharmacotherapy, NT, or UC. Five RCTs indicated that yoga had no effect on SBP compared to dietary modification (DIM), enhanced UC, passive relaxation (PR), or physical exercises (PE). Eight RCTs indicated that yoga had no effect on DBP compared to DIM, enhanced UC, pharmacotherapy, NT, PE, PR, or breath awareness or reading. One RCT did not report between-group comparisons. Conclusion The evidence for the effectiveness of yoga as a treatment of hypertension is encouraging but inconclusive. Further, more rigorous trials seem warranted.
    Complementary therapies in medicine 06/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.ctim.2014.03.009 · 2.22 Impact Factor