Yoga treatment for Atherosclerotic Obstructions

A research publication of the Central Council for Research in Yoga and Naturopathy (CCRYN) reveals that Naturopathy and yoga have been proven to be beneficial in reversing Atherosclerotic Obstructions in patients suffering from Coronary Artery Diseases (CAD).

There is tremendous increase in the number of people suffering from CAD, the obvious reason being bad and unhealthy lifestyles. Various other factors like anxiety, tension, stress, junk food, sedentary lifestyle clubbed with lack of exercise also adds up to the increase in the number of CAD patients.

Yoga and Naturopathy are considered to be simple and effective therapies which do not involve usage of drugs for treatment. It has also been found that yoga soothes Atherosclerotic Plaque, thereby decreasing the chances of undergoing an Angioplasty or a Coronary Bypass Surgery.

A study was conducted by the All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) and Adhyatma Sadhna Kendra on 42 patients (men) suffering from CAD in the age group of 32 to 72 years. They were divided into two groups of 21 patients each with similar characteristics. One group was given a lifestyle involving Yoga, and the other group was given the regular medical therapy. The group that received yoga intervention showed remarkable improvement in the symptoms of angina, in comparison to the other group which actually showed an overall deterioration. In addition, the group with yoga therapy was in a better psychological status, their cholesterol levels and body weights decreased, while the other group did not show any significant changes in these lines. Their coronary angiographies which were taken after a year showed regression among yoga group patients, while it showed progression of Coronary Stenosis in the group that received medications. Hence the need for coronary angioplasty and bypass surgery was considerably reduced in the yoga group.

On the whole, the study was concluded with the belief that yoga had a favorable impact on angina, lowering the cholesterol levels and body weight, and that yogic intervention can be given to patients even in advanced stage of CAD to reduce the symptoms significantly. The kind of yogic interventions that were given included Pranayama, Asanas, Kayotsarg (for relaxation), stress management, Anupreksha and Anurat (moral principles for leading a better life), combined with a vegetarian diet which was low in fat and high in fibre.