Yoga is a generic term for a physical, mental, and spiritual discipline originating in ancient India thousands of years ago. Yoga is good for the mind, body and soul and is a great way to stay healthy. New research has shown that it’s even more beneficial for cancer survivors.
A 2010 study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, found yoga improved sleep problems and fatigue. All of the cancer patients had been suffering from sleep disruption for 2 to 24 months. Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center took 400 cancer survivors and administered a yoga group and a standard care group. The yoga group participated in 75-minute yoga sessions twice a week. The researchers found that the yoga participants had significantly reduced fatigue, took less sleep medication and improved sleep quality compared to the control group.
“This is great news for cancer survivors who deal with persistent and debilitating side effects from their cancer and its treatments long after their primary therapy ends,” said lead investigator Karen Mustian, Ph. D., M.P.H. assistant professor at the University of Rochester Medical Center. “There are few treatments for the sleep problems and fatigue survivors experience that work for very long, if at all.”
Not only can yoga help with sleep and fatigue, it can also improve quality of life. A 2011 study presented at the 47th annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology reports yoga improved quality of life and lowered stress in cancer patients undergoing radiation treatments. Researchers at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center administered yoga, simple stretching or no yoga or stretching to 163 women with breast cancer undergoing radiation therapy. Quality of life assessments, including fatigue, daily function, depression and spirituality were obtained from the participants prior to the study.
The yoga and stretching groups participated in one-hour sessions three times a week during the six week radiation treatment. The yoga classes included yoga postures, breathing, meditation and relaxation. The researchers found that both yoga and stretching reduced fatigue, but the yoga group had greater benefits to quality of life and lower stress hormones than either of the two other groups.
“The combination of mind and body practices that are part of yoga clearly have tremendous potential to help patients manage the psychosocial and physical distress associated with treatment and life after cancer, beyond the benefits of simple stretching,” says lead researcher Lorenzo Cohen, Ph.D., professor and director of the Integrative Medicine Program at MD Anderson.
FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital offers free Yoga for Cancer Patients & their Caregivers every other month. For more information regarding the yoga sessions at FirstHealth call (800) 213-3284.
FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital’s FirstHealth Cancer Services offers treatment and support for cancer patients and survivors in the Pinehurst, Sanford, Raeford, Laurinburg, Lumberton, Troy and Rockingham regions of NC and beyond.
October 11, 2017
FirstHealth Joins Nation in Highlighting Breast Cancer AwarenessSushma Patel, M.D. PINEHURST – According to the American Cancer Society, there is no sure way to prevent breast cancer. But there are things a woman…
September 19, 2017
Stand Together & Drink Pink 2017Register in the form provided to host your Drink Pink lemonade stand. To learn more about the Stand Together & Drink Pink campaign, click here. To ac…
July 18, 2017
FirstHealth Continues Cancer-Related Insomnia Study with Second Clinical TrialEllen Willard, M.D. PINEHURST – Certain medications, anxiety and “fear of the unknown” are known to contribute to the insomnia that cancer patients e…
July 23, 2018
Prediabetes classesYou can prevent type 2 diabetes and FirstHealth Community Health Services is here to help you. PreventT2 is a proven program to prevent or delay type…