Study Reveals Yoga Can Ease Symptoms of Depression


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A series of studies have shown yoga can help reduce symptoms associated with depression.

The findings were presented at the 125th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association and showed a reduction in patients’ scores of depression and anxiety.
Source: Getty Images

The studies, which covered a broad range of ages, genders and occupations found there to be a lot of potential in using yoga as a complementary approach in helping ease depression alongside traditional therapy.

One of the studies was conducted by the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center and found that male veterans who participated in twice weekly yoga classes for a period of eight weeks experienced fewer symptoms of depression. The author of the study, Dr. Lindsey Hopkins said of the findings, “There’s lots of potential,” adding, “Yoga has become increasingly popular in the West, and many new yoga practitioners cite stress-reduction and other mental health concerns as their primary reason for practicing.”

Another study focused on 74 mildly depressed university students and compared yoga with a relaxation technique. Researchers say the results showed yoga significantly lowered symptoms associated with stress, anxiety and depression.

Nina Vollbehr from the Netherlands Center for Integrative Psychiatry revealed, “These studies suggest that yoga-based interventions have promise for depressed mood and that they are feasible for patients with chronic, treatment-resistant depression.”