Yoga May Have Health Benefits For People With Asthma

Yoga May Have Health Benefits For People With Asthma

Benefits Of Yoga Studies

A new review suggests that yoga may have a beneficial effect on symptoms and quality of life in people with asthma, but effects on lung function and medication use are uncertain.

A new Cochrane Review, published in the Cochrane Library today, suggests that yoga may have a beneficial effect on symptoms and quality of life in people with asthma, but effects on lung function and medication use are uncertain.

Asthma is a common chronic disease affecting about 300 million people worldwide. The many typical symptoms of asthma include wheezing, coughing, chest tightness and shortness of breath.

Yoga BenefitsYoga has gained global popularity as a form of exercise with general life-style benefits, and recent studies have investigated the potential of yoga to relieve asthma-related problems.

A new Cochrane Review summarizes the results of randomised trials and has found evidence that practicing yoga might be able to improve asthma quality of life and symptoms to some extent. However, researchers also warned that higher-quality studies with more participants would be needed to draw any firm conclusions about the effects of yoga.

The team of Cochrane researchers wanted to find out the effects of yoga in people with asthma.

They found 15 randomised controlled trials which involved 1,048 men and women. Most of the trials were conducted in India, followed by Europe and the United States. The majority of participants had mild to moderate asthma for six months to more than 23 years. Six studies looked into the effects of breathing alone during yoga exercise, whilst the other studies assessed the effects of yoga that included breathing, posture and meditation.

Most people continued to take their usual asthma medication while participating in the studies. The studies were conducted over a time period of two weeks to over four years.

The researchers found some moderate quality evidence from five studies that yoga exercise reduces the impact of asthma on people’s quality of life. However, evidence about yoga’s impact on the participants’ lung function is more uncertain because the results varied. The effects of yoga on medication use and any side-effects of yoga are also uncertain, because only a few very small studies reported these outcomes.

Lead author, Dr Zuyao Yang from the Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care, at the Chinese University of Hong Kong commented, “Our findings suggest that yoga exercise may lead to small improvements in asthma quality of life and symptoms. However, it is unclear whether yoga has a consistent impact on lung function and we don’t yet know if yoga can reduce people’s medication usage, or if there are any side-effects of yoga for people with asthma.”

Deputy Co-ordinating Editor of the Cochrane Airways Group, Rebecca Normansell, added, “At present, we just don’t have enough high quality evidence to determine the effects of yoga as a type of exercise for helping people manage their asthma.

Because there is uncertainty about the effects of yoga on lung function and use of asthma medication, it’s important that people with asthma continue to take their medication, as prescribed. The findings of this Cochrane Review will help people make more informed choices about their future treatment options.”


Yoga Story Source:

The above post is reprinted from materials provided by Wiley

More Yoga Research

Start Adding Some Variety to Your Vegetarian Lifestyle

Try Adding some Variety to your Vegetarian Lifestyle

When you’re planning a healthy vegetarian diet, you’re only limited by your imagination.  It’s important to incorporate a wide variety of whole grains, legumes, vegetables and fruits in different meals, including seeds and nuts.

Variety is the spice of life, and it will help ensure your vegetarian diet is nutrient-dense, interesting, and fun!  Aim for variety, even when you serve favorite entrees over and over again, by serving different side dishes, snacks and desserts.

Be creative in planning meals

Boost your consumption of beans and vegetables by eating these foods at lunch time rather than just for dinner.  Make it a goal to serve a vegetable every day for lunch and two for dinner. Plan a meal around a vegetable.

A baked potato can be a hearty entree; serve it with baked beans, a sauce of stewed tomatoes or a few tablespoons of salsa.  Or make a simple meal of sautéed vegetables and pasta.

Try new foods often

Experiment with a variety of grains such as quinoa, couscous, bulgur, barley, and wheat berries. Try fruits and vegetables that are popular in different international cuisines, such as bok choy. Accentuate the positive. Focus more on healthy foods that fit into a vegetarian plan instead of foods to avoid.

If you’re unsure how to include a new food into your vegetarian diet, ask the produce manager at your local grocer or health food store for ideas on how to prepare it. The internet can be a great resource for new recipe and preparation ideas.

But be sure that you’re building your menu on a strong plant food base. Make them the core of your vegetarian diet.

Why I Became Vegetarian

 

Don’t stress about getting enough protein

As long as calories are sufficient and the diet is varied, vegetarians easily meet protein needs. Grains, beans, vegetables, and nuts all provide protein. Vegetarians do not need to eat special combinations of foods to meet protein needs.  However, it is important to be aware of fat.  Even vegetarians can get too much fat if the diet contains large amounts of nuts, oils, processed foods, or sweets.

Lazy Vegetarians Who Choose the Wrong Carbs Risk Health

We’ve all been there.  We’ve just come in from a long day at work and the last thing on our minds taking the time to prepare a healthy, nutritionally sound vegetarian meal.

But choosing a refined or enriched carbohydrate over the beneficial carbohydrates that a solid, well-balanced vegetarian diet offers defeats the purpose of your decision to live a vegetarian lifestyle, and that’s for optimal health.

Consuming refined carbohydrates presents different hazards to your health.

The over-consumption of refined carbohydrates and sugars can result in excess insulin in the bloodstream.

In the presence of excess insulin, glucose, the blood sugar, is converted to triglycerides and stored in the fat cells of the body.

According to one study, consuming refined grains may also increase your risk of getting stomach cancer.  The research found that a high intake of refined grains could increase a patient’s risk of stomach cancer.

In addition, refined sugars and carbohydrates have been implicated as a contributing factor in increased gallbladder disease, according to a recent study.  It showed a direct link between the amount of sugars eaten and the incidence of gallbladder disease.

Another study looked at the role carbohydrates play in the incidence of heart disease.  The researchers noted that as carbohydrate consumption increased, so did the level of triglycerides in the blood of the participants.

Diets low in fat and high in carbohydrates not only dramatically raised triglyceride levels but significantly reduced levels of HDL, the “good” cholesterol.

And lastly, refined white sugars increase the rate at which your body excretes calcium, which is directly connected to your skeletal health. Simply put, as your sugary and refined carbohydrate intake increases, your bone density decreases.

So don’t be lazy!  Do your body right and take the time to prepare a nutrient-dense and delicious vegetarian meal.  Your body, and your conscience, will thank you for it in the long run.

Transitioning To A Vegetarian Family

If you’re considering moving to a vegetarian diet as an adult, you probably want to pass on this good nutrition and improved way of eating to your family as well. In fact, it’s your responsibility as a parent to nurture your children and help them develop physically, mentally and spiritually.

But that can be hard to do, especially in a culture where our children are bombarded with messages from fast food restaurants in the media. How do you teach kids to resist the siren song of Ronald McDonald?

There isn’t a plate of vegetables on the planet that’s going to look as good to them as a Happy Meal!

You have to start slowly to change not only your own eating patterns, but your family’s as well.  Like any other dietary endeavor, it starts at the grocery store.  Begin stocking the refrigerator with healthy snacks like apples and carrots.

Exchange good, chewy brown rice for white rice and processed side dishes, which are so high in fat and sodium.  Make meat portions smaller and smaller and start incorporating more vegetables and grains in your family dinners.

Don’t make changes all at once.  If you do give in and stop at a fast food restaurant, get fruit or yogurt in addition to or part of that meal. Make the changes so gradual that they’ll never notice their diets are changing.

Kids are usually very sympathetic about animals, and it’s not too early to talk to them about eating in a way that isn’t cruel to animals.

You’ll be doing them a favor that will last them a lifetime.  With childhood obesity at epidemic levels in the U.S., you will be setting up your children for lifelong eating vegetarian habits that will help ensure a long and healthy life.

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