Reducing psychological distress and obesity through Yoga practice

Int J Yoga. 2013 Jan;6(1):66-70. doi: 10.4103/0973-6131.105949.


Background: Yoga practice has been effectively prescribed in conjunction with other medical and yogic procedures in the management of severe psychosomatic diseases, including cancer, bronchial asthma, colitis, peptic and ulcer. It improves strength and flexibility, and may help control physiological variables such as blood pressure, lipids, respiration, heart rate, and metabolic rate to improve overall exercise capacity.

Aim of the study: The aim of this study is to evaluate the effects of Yogic Practice on anxiety/depression associated with obesity.

Materials and methods: Patients were recruited from the Department of Physiology, C.S.M. Medical University (erstwhile KGMU), Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India. A total of 272 subjects were divided into two groups: 1) group of 205 subjects (with yogic practice) and 2) a control group of 67 subjects (with aerobic exercise). Assessment of anxiety and depression were done by Hamilton Rating Scale.

Result: This study supports yoga as an effective tool with no diet restriction to improve anxiety and depression symptoms as well as obesity in obese subjects

Conclusion: Incorporating yogic asana in the treatment protocol of patients suffering from anxiety and depression may prove beneficial in the long run.

Keywords: Anxiety; depression; obesity; yoga practice.