"More than I expected": Perceived benefits of yoga practice among older adults at risk for cardiovascular disease

Texas Christian University, Harris College of Nursing and Health Sciences, Fort Worth, TX, United States. Electronic address: .
Complementary therapies in medicine (Impact Factor: 1.55). 02/2013; 21(1):14-28. DOI: 10.1016/j.ctim.2012.11.001
Source: PubMed


This study was conducted with participants from trials examining the effects of an Iyengar yoga program on cardiovascular disease risk. The objective of the current study was to evaluate the perceived benefits of yoga in a population of older, predominantly overweight adults participating in a gentle 8-week yoga program.
This study used a constructivist-interpretive approach to naturalistic inquiry.
A total of 42 participants completed the intervention and met the inclusion criteria for the current qualitative study.
The 8-week Iyengar yoga program included two 90-min yoga classes and five 30-min home sessions per week. Participants completed weekly logs and an exit questionnaire at the end of the study.
Qualitative data from weekly logs and exit questionnaires were compiled and conventional content analysis performed with the use of ATLAS.ti to facilitate the process.
Four broad themes emerged from content analysis: practicing yoga improved overall physical function and capacity (for 83% of participants); practicing yoga reduced stress/anxiety and enhanced calmness (83% of participants); practicing yoga enriched the quality of sleep (21% of participants); and practicing yoga supported efforts toward dietary improvements (14% of participants).
These results suggest that yoga may have ancillary benefits in terms of improved physical function, enhanced mental/emotional state, enriched sleep quality, and improved lifestyle choices, and may be useful as a health promotion strategy in the prevention and management of chronic disease.

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    • "Additional benefits of yoga include improved exercise-related self-efficacy [25] quality of life [26] and mood [27,28] all of which are important factors in maintenance of lifestyle behavior change. Yoga also may have a different effect on the sympathetic nervous system (SNS) and hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis response to stress compared to other types of exercise. "
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    ABSTRACT: Type 2 diabetes is a major health problem in many countries including India. Yoga may be an effective type 2 diabetes prevention strategy in India, particularly given its cultural familiarity. This was a parallel, randomized controlled pilot study to collect feasibility and preliminary efficacy data on yoga for diabetes risk factors among people at high risk of diabetes. Primary outcomes included: changes in BMI, waist circumference, fasting blood glucose, postprandial blood glucose, insulin, insulin resistance, blood pressure, and cholesterol. We also looked at measures of psychological well-being including changes in depression, anxiety, positive and negative affect and perceived stress. Forty-one participants with elevated fasting blood glucose in Bangalore, India were randomized to either yoga (n = 21) or a walking control (n = 20). Participants were asked to either attend yoga classes or complete monitored walking 3–6 days per week for eight weeks. Randomization and allocation was performed using computer-generated random numbers and group assignments delivered in sealed, opaque envelopes generated by off-site study staff. Data were analyzed based on intention to treat. This study was feasible in terms of recruitment, retention and adherence. In addition, yoga participants had significantly greater reductions in weight, waist circumference and BMI versus control (weight −0.8 ± 2.1 vs. 1.4 ± 3.6, p = 0.02; waist circumference −4.2 ± 4.8 vs. 0.7 ± 4.2, p < 0.01; BMI −0.2 ± 0.8 vs. 0.6 ± 1.6, p = 0.05). There were no between group differences in fasting blood glucose, postprandial blood glucose, insulin resistance or any other factors related to diabetes risk or psychological well-being. There were significant reductions in systolic and diastolic blood pressure, total cholesterol, anxiety, depression, negative affect and perceived stress in both the yoga intervention and walking control over the course of the study. Among Indians with elevated fasting blood glucose, we found that participation in an 8-week yoga intervention was feasible and resulted in greater weight loss and reduction in waist circumference when compared to a walking control. Yoga offers a promising lifestyle intervention for decreasing weight-related type 2 diabetes risk factors and potentially increasing psychological well-being. Trial registration Identified NCT00090506.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine
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    Full-text · Article · Jan 2007 · Psicologia em Estudo
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    ABSTRACT: Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the major cause of early morbidity and mortality in most developed countries. Secondary prevention aims to prevent repeat cardiac events and death in people with established CHD. Lifestyle modifications play an important role in secondary prevention. Yoga has been regarded as a kind of physical activity as well as stress management strategy. Growing evidence suggests the beneficial effects of yoga on various ailments. To determine the effectiveness of yoga for secondary prevention of mortality, morbidity, and health related quality of life of patients with CHD. We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) on The Cochrane Library (2012, Issue 1), MEDLINE (1948 to January 2012), EMBASE (1980 to January 2012), ISI Web of Science for conference proceedings (1970 to January 2012), China Journal Net (CJN) (1994 to March 2012), WanFang Data (1990 to March 2012), and HKInChiP (from 1980). Ongoing studies were identified in the metaRegister of Controlled Trials (April 2012) and the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (April 2012). No language restrictions were applied. We included randomized controlled trials (RCTs) investigating the influence of yoga practice on CHD outcomes. We included studies that had at least a six months follow-up period. Men and women (aged 18 years and above) with a diagnosis of acute or chronic CHD were included. We included studies with one group practicing a type of yoga compared to the control group receiving either no intervention or interventions other than yoga. Two authors independently selected studies according to the pre-specified inclusion criteria. Disagreements were resolved by consensus or discussion with a third author. We found no eligible RCTs that met the inclusion criteria of the review and thus we were unable to perform a meta-analysis. The effectiveness of yoga for secondary prevention in CHD remains uncertain. Large RCTs of high quality are needed.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2012 · Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online)
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