MeditationMenopauseRelaxationTai ChiYoga

Review: Mind body therapies for menopausal symptoms

Researchers from the University of Virginia Health System, in Charlottesville reviewed yoga and/or meditation-based programs, tai chi, and other relaxation practices, including muscle relaxation and breath-based techniques, relaxation response training, and low-frequency sound-wave therapy.

First, the details.

21 studies were included in the review.

And, the results.

  • Yoga, tai chi, and meditation-based programs
    • 8 of 9 studies reported improvement in overall menopausal and vasomotor symptoms.
    • 6 of 7 studies indicated improvement in mood and sleep with yoga-based programs.
    • 4 studies reported reduced musculoskeletal pain.
  • Breath-based and other relaxation therapies
    • Results from 9 studies suggest there’s promise for alleviating vasomotor and other menopausal symptoms, although the findings were mixed.
  • The design of most studies was flawed, complicating interpretation of findings.

The bottom line?

Yoga-based and certain other mind-body therapies may be beneficial for alleviating specific menopausal symptoms.

However, the authors concluded, ”The limitations characterizing most studies hinder interpretation of findings and preclude firm conclusions regarding efficacy.”

2/21/10 21:24 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, a complementary and alternative medicine website.