Beneficial effects of yoga lifestyle on reversibility of ischaemic heart disease

The Journal of Association of Physicians of India.

 2004 Apr;52:283-9.

Yogendra J, Yogendra HJ, Ambardekar S, Lele RD, Shetty S, Dave M, Husein N.

The Yoga Institute, Santacruz, Mumbai.

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OBJECTIVES

Yoga based lifestyle modifications have been earlier shown to be beneficial in coronary artery disease in a small number of patients. We evaluated the role of lifestyle modification based on Yoga techniques, stress management and dietary modifications in retardation of coronary artery disease.

 METHODS:

This prospective, controlled, open trial included angiographically proven coronary artery disease patients (71 patients in study group and 42 patients in control group). They were assessed clinically, by biochemical parameters, stress myocardial perfusion and function studies and coronary angiography and on psychological parameters. The study group patients were given a family based Yoga Programme which included, control of risk factors, dietary modifications and stress management for a period of one year. The patients were assessed at baseline, at frequent intervals and at the end of one year.

RESULTS:

 At the end of one year of yoga training, statistical significant changes (P<0.05) were found in serum total cholesterol (reduction by 23.3% in study group patients as compared to 4.4% in controls); serum LDL cholesterol (reduction of 26% in study group patients as compared to 2.6% in the control group), regression of disease (43.7% of study group patients v/s 31% control group on MPI and 70.4% of study group v/s 28% of control group on angiography) arrest of progression (46.5% study group v/s 33.3% control group on MPI) and progression (9.9% of study group vs 35.7% of controls on MPI, 29.6% of study group v/s 60.0% of controls on angiography). At the end of the study improvement in anxiety scores was concordant with the improvement seen in the MPI. No untoward effects of the therapy were observed.

CONCLUSION:

Yoga based lifestyle modifications help in regression of coronary lesions and in improving myocardial perfusion. This is translated into clinical benefits and symptomatic improvement.

 

The effects of unilateral forced nostril breathing on the heart

The International Journal of Neurosciences.

1993 Nov;73(1-2):47-60.

Shannahoff-Khalsa DS, Kennedy B.

Department of Medicine, University of California, San Diego 92103-8341.

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Three experiments are described that employ impedance cardiography to monitor the effects of unilateral forced nostril breathing (UFNB) on the heart. Experiment 1 includes 7 subjects (4 males, 3 females) with a respiratory rate of 6 breaths/min (BPM). Experiment 2 includes 16 trials using one subject to examine the intraindividual variability, at 6 BPM. Experiment 3 includes 10 trials with the same subject in experiment 2, but with a respiratory rate of 2-3 breaths/s. This rapid rate of respiration is a yogic breathing technique called “breath of fire” or “kapalabhatti” and employs a very shallow but rapid breath in which the abdominal region acts like a bellows. All 3 experiments demonstrated that right UFNB increases heart rate (HR) compared to left. Experiment 1 gave 7 negative slopes, or lowering in HR with left nostril breathing and 7 positive slopes, or increases in HR with right nostril breathing, p = .001. The second and third experiments showed differences in HR means in which right UFNB increases HR more than left, p = .013, p = .001, respectively. In experiment 2 stroke volume was higher with left UFNB, p = .045, compensating for lower HR. Left UFNB increased end diastolic volume as measured in both experiments 1 and 2, p = .006, p = .001, respectively. These results demonstrate a unique unilateral effect on sympathetic stimulation of the heart that may have therapeutic value.

 

 

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