The Effects of Mind-Body Interventions on Sleep Quality: A Systematic Review

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:902708. doi: 10.1155/2015/902708. Epub 2015 Jun 16.


Study Objectives. To evaluate the effect of mind-body interventions (MBI) on sleep. Methods. We reviewed randomized controlled MBI trials on adults (through 2013) with at least one sleep outcome measure. We searched eleven electronic databases and excluded studies on interventions not considering mind-body medicine. Studies were categorized by type of MBI, whether sleep was primary or secondary outcome measure and outcome type. Results. 1323 abstracts were screened, and 112 papers were included. Overall, 67 (60%) of studies reported a beneficial effect on at least one sleep outcome measure. Of the most common interventions, 13/23 studies using meditation, 21/30 using movement MBI, and 14/25 using relaxation reported at least some improvements in sleep. There were clear risks of bias for many studies reviewed, especially when sleep was not the main focus. Conclusions. MBI should be considered as a treatment option for patients with sleep disturbance. The benefit of MBI needs to be better documented with objective outcomes as well as the mechanism of benefit elucidated. There is some evidence that MBI have a positive benefit on sleep quality. Since sleep has a direct impact on many other health outcomes, future MBI trials should consider including sleep outcome measurements.

Publication types

  • Review