Heart DiseaseYoga

Benefits of yoga for African Americans with heart failure

beating heartResearchers from Georgia State University, in Atlanta measured several favorable changes in adults who practiced yoga.

First, the details.

  • 40 patients (38 African Americans) with heart failure were randomly assigned to the yoga group or the control group.
  • All patients were asked to follow a home walk program.

And, the results.

  • The yoga group showed significant favorable changes for flexibility, treadmill time, and VO2peak vs the control group.
    • VO2peak reflects the physical fitness of a person.
  • There were also significant changes in IL-6, CRP, and EC-SOD.
    • IL-6 (interleukin 6): A measure of inflammation
    • CRP (C-reactive protein): Screening test for heart disease
    • EC-SOD (extracellulare superoxide dismutase): An anti-oxidant
  • There was also improved quality of life as measured by the Minnesota Living with Heart Failure Questionnaire

The bottom line?

The authors concluded, “Yoga therapy offered additional benefits to the standard medical care of predominantly African American heart failure patients by improving cardiovascular endurance, quality of life, inflammatory markers, and flexibility.”

12/3/09 19:47 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.