It’s perhaps an understatement to describe yoga as merely popular. The cardio, strength and flexibility benefits of yoga mean that well over 2 million Australians participate each year. Yes, yoga is more popular than exercises such as pilates and aerobics.
For many people, however, yoga isn’t just a way to stay healthy, strong and flexible. They use it to help deal with a range of debilitating illnesses. Illnesses such as cancer and Parkinson’s disease.
Yoga and cancer
Now we’re not suggesting that yoga can help heal cancers. However, yoga can help complement medical treatment and help people who are battling cancer.
According to Healthline, yoga can help cancer patients in five ways:
- Yoga can help lower fatigue. In fact, several studies have shown the benefits that yoga can bring to cancer patients who suffer from fatigue as part of their treatment and illness.
- It should come as no surprise that yoga can help decrease stress. Yoga’s stress-reducing, relaxation-promoting benefits have been well known for centuries. Having and treating cancer is obviously a stressful time for most people and anything that can be done to reduce this stress is beneficial.
- Spending lots of time in hospital or confined at home can leave you stiff and sore. Yoga can help, particularly as it’s a gentle form of exercise. Yoga can assist cancer patients stay active and improve physical functioning.
- Yoga can help improve sleep, which is important for healthy people but even more important for people with illnesses, such as cancer. Studies have shown that yoga can help with sleep quality, duration and efficiency.
- Yoga can even help reduce the risk of cancer recurrence. The reason? Any exercise that can assist a person reduce weight and body fat density will help reduce the chances of contracting cancer again. So, don’t just use yoga when you have cancer, but afterwards as well.
The benefits of yoga for cancer patients is backed up by the Cancer Council NSW who say there is a “lot of evidence to show the benefits of yoga and meditation for people with cancer”.
Yoga and Parkinson’s Disease
A study published in a medical journal and promoted by Psychology Today says that yoga can also be beneficial for people with Parkinson’s disease. To summarise, Parkinson’s is a disorder of the central nervous system, causing tremors, slow movement, stiffness and loss of balance.
For the study, an 8-week yoga program was implemented for people suffering from the disease. It was found that yoga helped improve the stability of patients, assisting with posture and their ability to walk, and reducing the risk of falls.
It’s not just Parkinson’s and cancer that can be helped by yoga. Other illnesses and ailments where benefits have been seen include heart disease, chronic back pain, anger issues, immune system issues, diabetes and mind health.
All this from poses, stretches and mindful breathing. It’s time to get into The Karma Studio for your dose of medicine today!
It’s time for you to get into The Karma Studio for your dose of medicine – or yoga – today!