Yoga Is A Natural Treatment For Anxiety

Yet another study has confirmed that yoga can assist in the treatment of a wide range of psychological disorders, including depression, anxiety, and cardiac disease. The study, based at Boston University's School of Medicine, attempts to identify specific causes for yoga's effectiveness, especially the role of vagal nerve stimulation.

Why does yoga work?

Much hypothesizing has been done regarding the mechanisms by which yoga achieves its beneficial results. Scientists believe that anxiety disorders, depression, epilepsy, and other disorders occur, in part, due to an imbalance in the autonomic nervous system combined with lower-than-normal levels of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA).

It is thought that the physical movements of yoga stimulate the vagus nerve, leading to an increase in GABA levels and a lessening of perceived stress or depression. The study builds off of previous work by the same team that showed a statistically significant improvement in symptoms among yoga practitioners versus walkers, and another study comparing the improvements of back pain sufferers who complemented standard treatments with a yoga regimen for 12 weeks versus a control group that received only standard care.

The next step, say the studies' authors, will be the development of specific mind-body treatment protocols to supplement existing medical practices.


The study included collaboration with researchers from New York Medical College and the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons.

Source: Medical Hypotheses

Photo: Pixabay

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