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In a groundbreaking new study, researchers identified the clinical effects of yoga and breath practice on symptoms of anxiety. I’m Kyle Kittleson. This is your MedCircle Weekly News.
Many people swear by the beneficial effects of yoga, meditation, and mindfulness - but according to psychologytoday.com, a groundbreaking new study is the first of its kind to actually measure the changes in the brain - and how those changes ease anxiety.
People with anxiety fail to react constructively to stresses. Their mood, energy levels, and sleep are all out of whack.
Here’s where the science comes in.
This can be traced to GABA, which is “the brain’s main inhibitory neurotransmitter.” It basically “calms” your brain cells and promotes relaxation and anti-anxiety effects when activated. Anxiety has been linked to low levels of GABA.
The study “compared the effects of a 12-week course of [low-impact] yoga on clinical outcomes & GABA levels in a group of healthy volunteers AND a group of people with depression and anxiety.” The yoga practice involved backbends, inversions, meditation, & breathwork for a total of about 5 hours a week.
The results? Remarkable.
“Study participants in the depression and anxiety group showed normalization of GABA levels” equivalent to the group of healthy participants.
So how does this affect anxiety treatment options going forward?
According to the article,
there are [very] few reasons why we wouldn’t integrate such practices into part of a wellness routine, especially if we are working toward more resilient stress responses in the face of anxiety, depression, trauma, substance-related conditions, and other difficulties with stress management.
For more information on anxiety check out our original series on Anxiety in Children with Dr. Judy Ho.
I’m Kyle Kittleson and remember - whatever you’re going through - you got this!
This content is intended for informational purposes only. It should not replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you think you have a medical emergency, call 911 or your doctor immediately.