Yoga and Veterans

"Harvard Bringham Study: Yoga Eases Veterans PTSD Symptoms"

YOGA AND Children

  • “Results suggest that school-based yoga may be advantageous for stress management and behavior.”   – Butzer et al (2014), Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine
  • “This study suggests that practice of yoga for a short duration (3 months) of time can significantly improve respiratory muscle strength in pediatric population.”  – D'Souza et al (2014), International Journal of Yoga
  • “The program consisted of weekly sessions. Each session incorporated yoga postures, visualization, and social exercises. Breathing techniques were integrated. . . The results demonstrate that children with high BIS [behavioral inhibition system] may benefit from a mind-body-based stress reduction program.” – Jellesma et al (2012), Journal of Holistic Nursing
  • “These results suggest that school-based yoga programs may be appropriate for promoting healthy behaviors at a societal level by focusing on the prevention of negative patterns during the adolescent transition.“ – Conboy et al (2013), Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing
  • “Positive effects of yoga have been shown in persons with mental-health problems, eating disorders and irritable bowel syndrome. There is considerable evidence that mind-body interventions have mild to moderate effects on physical symptoms, psychological functioning and [quality of life], and may be particularly helpful for children coping with acute pain…chronic abdominal pain…and mental-health problems.”  – Hartmann et al (2012), Focus on Alternative and Complementary Therapies
  • “This pilot study suggests that yoga exercises are effective for children aged 8–18 years with [functional abdominal pain], resulting in significant reduction of pain intensity and frequency, especially in children of 8–11 years old. Parents reported a significantly higher [Kidscreen quality of life] score after yoga treatment.” – Brands et al (2011), Complementary Therapies in Medicine
  • “The results of this pilot study demonstrate that a six-week peer-mediated multimodal behavioral program that included Yoga and Meditation can lead to measurable benefits in children with ADHD. More than 50% of the children improved their academic and behavioral performance.”  – Mehta et al (2011), ISRN Pediatrics
  • “The results show that the students who practiced yoga performed better in academics. The study further shows that low-stress students performed better than high-stress students, meaning thereby that stress affects the students' performance.“ – Kauts et al (2009), International Journal of Yoga
  • “There was highly significant improvement in the IQ and social adaptation parameters in the yoga group as compared to the control group. This study shows the efficacy of yoga as an effective therapeutic tool in the management of mentally challenged children.” – Uma et al (1989), Journal of Intellectual Disability Research

Patient Care

  • “This 12-week community-based yoga intervention was feasible and provides preliminary evidence for the benefits of yoga on [health-related quality of life], physical fitness and [physical activity levels] in pediatric cancer out-patients.” –Wurz et al (2014), Pediatric Blood & Cancer
  • “…associations between affect, mindfulness, and patient-reported mental health outcomes, including mood disturbance, stress symptoms, and health-related quality of life (HRQL), were examined in an existing seven-week yoga program for cancer survivors. Decreases in mood disturbance and stress symptoms and improvements in HRQL were observed upon program completion. Results…suggest a reciprocal relationship in which higher HRQL is associated with yoga practice maintenance.” – Mackenzie et al (2013), Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
  • “This…study investigated the effects of meditation with yoga (and psychoeducation) versus group therapy with hypnosis (and psychoeducation) versus psychoeducation alone on diagnostic status and symptom levels among 46 individuals with long-term depressive disorders. Results indicate that significantly more meditation group participants experienced a remission than did controls at 9-month follow-up.”  – Butler et al (2008), Journal of Clinical Psychology
  • “The results suggest possible benefits for yoga in reducing postoperative distress and preventing immune suppression following surgery [for breast cancer patients.] The results suggest a significant decrease in psychological morbidity such as anxiety state and trait, depression, treatment-related symptoms and improvement in the quality of life in the yoga group as compared to the controls following surgery.“ – Rao et al (2008), International Journal of Yoga


  • “The present study was conducted to assess the effectiveness of yoga in the management of dyslipidemia in patients of type 2 diabetes mellitus. . . After intervention with yoga for a period of 3 months the study group showed a decrease in total cholesterol, triglycerides and LDL, with an improvement in HDL.” – Shantakumari et al (2013), Indian Heart Journal
  • “Results of this study [Yoga-Nidra on blood glucose level in diabetic patients] suggest that subjects on Yoga-nidra with drug regimen had better control in their fluctuating blood glucose and symptoms associated with diabetes, compared to those were on oral hypoglycaemics alone.” – Amita et al (2009), Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology
  • “The observations suggest that the performance of asanas led to increased sensitivity of the B cells of pancreas to the glucose signal. The increased sensitivity seems to be a sustained change resulting from a progressive long-term effect of asanas. The study is significant in that it has for the first time attempted to probe the mechanism by which yogasanas help diabetes mellitus.” – Manjunatha et al (2005), Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology
  • “Yoga asanas have a beneficial effect on glycaemic control and improve nerve function in mild to moderate Type 2 diabetes with sub-clinical neuropathy.” – Malhotra et al (2002), Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology
  • “These findings suggest that better glycaemic control and pulmonary functions can be obtained in NIDDM [Diabetes mellitus type 2] cases with yoga asanas and pranayama.” – Malhotra et al (2002), Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology

Meditation and Cancer

Meditation and Cancer Research

Examining Mediators and Moderators of Yoga for Women With Breast Cancer Undergoing Radiotherapy (2016)

  • “Yoga may provide the greatest mental-health–related QOL benefits for those experiencing pre-radiotherapy sleep disturbance and depressive symptoms. Yoga may improve physical-health–related QOL by increasing ability to find benefit in the [breast] cancer experience.” 

"Study First to Compare Benefits of Mind-Body Practices to Simple Stretching Exercises"


Yoga as an Intervention for PTSD: a Theoretical Rationale and Review of the Literature (2016)

 “Extant data suggest that establishing a yoga practice may prove to be an effective strategy for reducing PTSD symptoms and improving functioning.”

Transcendental Meditation may reduce PTSD symptoms, medication use in active-duty personnel (2016)

 Half the service members voluntarily practiced Transcendental Meditation regularly in addition to their other therapy; half did not. At one month, 83.7 percent of the meditators had stabilized, reduced or stopped their use of psychotropic drugs to treat their conditions while 10.9 percent had increased their medication dosage. Of those who did not meditate, 59.4 percent had stabilized, reduced or stopped taking psychotropic drugs while 40.5 percent were taking more medication. Similar percentages held up in the following months and by six months, non-meditators had experienced about a 20 percent increase in their symptoms compared with those using the meditation practice.

Doctors Say ‘Yes’ to Yoga & Meditation as Complementary Therapies for Anxiety (2016)

 Researchers for the JAMA Internal Medicine paper found that 20 to 30 minutes of daily mindfulness meditation showed the most promise, but shorter meditation programs were also effective in taming anxiety. When it comes to yoga, gentle practices such as slow Hatha yoga combined with pranayama and meditation can help quiet an overactive mind; they’re also accessible to almost all levels of practitioners.


 Teaching Yoga and Meditation to Young Men in an Alternative to Incarceration Program (2016)

  • “Findings suggest that the male participants (age 18-24 years) benefited from the [yoga and mindfulness training] intervention through reductions in stress and improvements in emotion regulation.” 

YOGA AND Substance abuse

  • “The [Sudarshan Kriya Yoga (SKY)] intervention produced a significant change in the [quality of life] of opioid dependent users as compared to [the control] group. The SKY program holds promise and can be used as a beneficial, low-risk adjunct for substance users undergoing treatment.“ – Anju et al (2015), International Journal of Yoga
  • “In this study it was found that Yoga has a positive and significant effect both on depression and state anxiety level of addicts in rehabilitation period (p=0.048),(p=0.023).” – Marefat et al (2011),The Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences
  • “Results extend the antidepressant effects of [Sudarshana Kriya Yoga] in alcohol dependence subjects. Reduction in stress-hormone levels (cortisol and ACTH) along with [Beck Depression Inventory] reductions possibly support a biological mechanism of SKY in producing beneficial effects.“ –  Vedamurthachar et al (2006), Journal of Affective Disorders

YOGA AND mental illness & Anxiety

  • “Participation in [Surdashan Kriya Yoga] ten days intense workshop and follow-ups, coupled with daily individual and independent practice of a simplified protocol of breathing techniques (30 min), can lead to significant reduction in levels of Anxiety and Depression.“ – Doria et al (2015), Journal of Affective Disorders
  • “In caregivers of outpatients with functional psychosis, 4 weeks of training followed by 3 months of home practice of a yoga module offered significant advantage over waitlist. Yoga can be offered as an intervention for caregivers of patients with severe mental disorders.” – Varambally et al (2013), Asian Journal of Psychiatry
  • “Over the 2-month period, participants exhibited significant decreases in depression symptoms and significant increases in an aspect of mindfulness and in behavior activation. This pilot study provided support for continuing to investigate Vinyasa yoga as an adjunct treatment for depression.” – Uebelacker et al (2010), Behavior Modification
  • “The aim of the study was to study the short-term impact of a comprehensive but brief lifestyle intervention, based on yoga, on anxiety levels in normal and diseased subjects. . . The observations suggest that a short educational program for lifestyle modification and stress management leads to remarkable reduction in the anxiety scores within a period of 10 days.” – Gupta et al (2006), Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology
  • “[The study] tested whether yoga practice is associated with greater awareness of and responsiveness to bodily sensations, lower self-objectification, greater body satisfaction, and fewer disordered eating attitudes. Three samples of women (43 yoga, 45 aerobic, and 51 nonyoga/nonaerobic practitioners) completed questionnaire measures. As predicted, yoga practitioners reported more favorably on all measures.”  – Daubenmier (2005), Psychology of Women Quarterly


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