Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Yoga may benefit breast cancer survivors: study

  • Print

Practising yoga for at least three hours a week for three months reduced the fatigue and inflammation in breast cancer survivors, compared with survivors who did no yoga, researchers reported.

And the more yoga, the greater the change.

At six months -- three months after the formal yoga had ended -- fatigue was 57 per cent lower in the women who had done yoga, compared with those who had not. Inflammation, measured by blood tests, was reduced by up to 20 per cent, said the researchers, from the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center.

"We also think the results could easily generalize to other groups of people who have issues with fatigue and inflammation," Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, the lead researcher and a psychiatry and psychology professor at Ohio State, said in a statement.

Two hundred breast cancer survivors were divided into two groups: one that took two 90-minute Hatha yoga classes a week, and one that did no yoga. The yoga practitioners also were encouraged to do additional yoga at home, and did so -- an average of almost 25 minutes a day. The women were yoga novices.

The researchers noted that yoga can be tailored to various abilities -- the women in the study were ages 27 to 76 -- and has been shown to help with mood and sleep among cancer survivors.

The study did not include aerobic exercise, and the participants did not lose weight.

And that, Kiecolt-Glaser said by telephone, led to a surprise. Other research had shown that inflammation -- a mechanism for loss of function and disability -- was unlikely to be reduced without weight loss. But she said there could be several reasons why her subjects had reduced inflammation without losing weight, including that yoga helps sleep and stress, which are associated with inflammation.

The women practised Hatha yoga, a restorative form that was recommended by an expert, Kiecolt-Glaser said.

Breast cancer treatment can be exhausting, and that can lead to less activity, which in turn can lead to a decreased capacity for activity in what Kiecolt-Glaser called "a downward spiral."

"Breast cancer survivors with lower levels of physical activity have a higher risk for premature death," Kiecolt-Glaser and colleagues from Ohio State, including her husband, Ronald Glaser, wrote in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. About one-third of survivors say that fatigue interferes with their daily activities.

The people who did not take yoga in the study were offered yoga classes at the end of the study, and Kiecolt-Glaser said 60 per cent to 70 per cent of them enrolled.


-- Los Angeles Times

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 22, 2014 D16

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Reimagining Winnipeg as the big city of the future

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A baby Red Panda in her area at the Zoo. International Red Panda Day is Saturday September 15th and the Assiniboine Park Zoo will be celebrating in a big way! The Zoo is home to three red pandas - Rufus, Rouge and their cub who was born on June 30 of this year. The female cub has yet to be named and the Assiniboine Park Zoo is asking the community to help. September 14, 2012  BORIS MINKEVICH / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
  • A squirrel enjoys the morning sunshine next to the duck pond in Assiniboine Park Wednesday– June 27, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Do you support Canada's involvement in the fight against Islamic State?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google