Breast cancer survivors benefit from yoga
New research suggests that yoga may reduce inflammation and fatigue in women recovering from breast cancer.
For the study, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, researchers looked at 200 women recovering from breast cancer, ranging in age from 26 to 76, and had completed treatment for either early or later-stage breast cancer.
Half of the women took 90 minute hatha yoga classes twice a week for 12 weeks, which involved standing, seated and mat poses, along with breathing exercises. They were also encouraged to continue doing yoga at home. The other women were wait-listed for yoga classes and enrolled later.
The women also completed questionnaires about their mood, sleep and eating habits prior to yoga, after they completed, and then three months later. Researchers also looked at inflammatory markers in their blood at these times.
The researchers found that women who took yoga for three months had a 41 percent drop in fatigue, and up to a 15 percent drop in inflammation compared to those who did not take yoga. In three months, the women who took yoga on average were 57 percent less likely to complain about being tired and had up to a 20 percent body-wide drop in inflammation.
Researchers say these benefits may be because yoga promotes better sleep, increases physical activity and lessens stress.
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