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1.  Role of Respiration in Mind-Body Practices: Concepts from Contemporary Science and Traditional Yoga Texts 
doi:10.3389/fpsyt.2014.00167
PMCID: PMC4243490  PMID: 25505427
ancient yoga texts; psychosomatic disease; respiratory regulation; affect; relaxation; inner awareness
2.  Research on Traditional Medicine: What Has Been Done, the Difficulties, and Possible Solutions 
Traditional medicine (TM) is being used more frequently all over the world. However most often these are choices made by the patient. Integrating TM into mainstream health care would require research to understand the efficacy, safety, and mechanism of action of TM systems. This paper describes research done on TM and difficulties encountered in researching TM, especially when an attempt is made to conform to the model for conventional medicine. The research articles were PubMed searched and categorized as experimental, quasiexperimental, reviews, descriptive, historical, interviews, case histories, and abstract not available. The last part of the report provides suggestions to make research on TM more acceptable and useful, with the ultimate goal of integrating TM into mainstream healthcare with sufficient knowledge about the efficacy, safety, and mechanism of action of TM systems.
doi:10.1155/2014/495635
PMCID: PMC4074945  PMID: 25013445
3.  A comparative controlled trial comparing the effects of yoga and walking for overweight and obese adults 
Background
Walking and yoga have been independently evaluated for weight control; however, there are very few studies comparing the 2 with randomization.
Material/Methods
The present study compared the effects of 90 minutes/day for 15 days of supervised yoga or supervised walking on: (i) related biochemistry, (ii) anthropometric variables, (iii) body composition, (iv) postural stability, and (v) bilateral hand grip strength in overweight and obese persons. Sixty-eight participants, of whom 5 were overweight (BMI ≥25 kg/m2) and 63 were obese (BMI ≥30 kg/m2; group mean age ±S.D., 36.4±11.2 years; 35 females), were randomized as 2 groups – (i) a yoga group and (ii) a walking group – given the same diet.
Results
All differences were pre-post changes within each group. Both groups showed a significant (p<0.05; repeated measures ANOVA, post-hoc analyses) decrease in: BMI, waist circumference, hip circumference, lean mass, body water, and total cholesterol. The yoga group increased serum leptin (p<0.01) and decreased LDL cholesterol (p<0.05). The walking group decreased serum adiponectin (p<0.05) and triglycerides (p<0.05).
Conclusions
Both yoga and walking improved anthropometric variables and serum lipid profile in overweight and obese persons. The possible implications are discussed.
doi:10.12659/MSM.889805
PMCID: PMC4051462  PMID: 24878827
Yoga; Walking; Obesity; Adipokines; Lipid Profile; Anthropometry
4.  Effect of yoga or physical exercise on physical, cognitive and emotional measures in children: a randomized controlled trial 
Background
Previous studies have separately reported the effects of physical exercise and yoga in children, showing physical, cognitive and emotional benefits.
Objectives
The present randomized controlled trial assessed the effects of yoga or physical exercise on physical fitness, cognitive performance, self-esteem, and teacher-rated behavior and performance, in school children.
Methods
98 school children between 8 to 13 years were randomized as yoga and physical exercise groups {n = 49 each; (yoga: 15 girls, group mean age 10.4 ± 1.2 years), (physical exercise: 23 girls, group mean age 10.5 ± 1.3 years)}. Both groups were blind assessed after allocation, using: (i) the Eurofit physical fitness test battery, (ii) Stroop color-word task for children, (iii) Battle’s self-esteem inventory and (iv) the teachers’ rating of the children’s obedience, academic performance, attention, punctuality, and behavior with friends and teachers. After assessments the yoga group practiced yoga (breathing techniques, postures, guided relaxation and chanting), 45 minutes each day, 5 days a week. During this time the physical exercise group had jogging-in-place, rapid repetitive movements and relay races or games. Both groups were assessed at the end of 3 months. Data were analyzed with RM ANOVA and post-hoc tests were Bonferroni adjusted.
Results
There was one significant difference between groups. This was in social self-esteem which was higher after physical exercise compared to yoga (p < 0.05). All the changes reported below are based on after-before comparisons, within each group. Both groups showed an increase in BMI, and number of sit-ups (p < 0.001). Balance worsened in the physical exercise group, while plate tapping improved in the yoga group (p < 0.001). In the Stroop task both groups showed improved color, word- and color-word naming (p < 0.01), while the physical exercise group showed higher interference scores. Total, general and parental self-esteem improved in the yoga group (p < 0.05).
Conclusion
Yoga and physical exercise are useful additions to the school routine, with physical exercise improving social self-esteem.
Trial registration
The study was registered in the Clinical Trials Registry of India (CTRI/2012/11/003112).
doi:10.1186/1753-2000-7-37
PMCID: PMC3826528  PMID: 24199742
Yoga; Physical exercise; Physical fitness; Cognitive performance; Self-esteem; School children
5.  Changes in P300 following alternate nostril yoga breathing and breath awareness 
This study assessed the effect of alternate nostril yoga breathing (nadisuddhi pranayama) on P300 auditory evoked potentials compared to a session of breath awareness of equal duration, in 20 male adult volunteers who had an experience of yoga breathing practices for more than three months. Peak amplitudes and peak latencies of the P300 were assessed before and after the respective sessions. There was a significant increase in the P300 peak amplitudes at Fz, Cz, and Pz and a significant decrease in the peak latency at Fz alone following alternate nostril yoga breathing. Following breath awareness there was a significant increase in the peak amplitude of P300 at Cz. This suggests that alternate nostril yoga breathing positively influences cognitive processes which are required for sustained attention at different scalp sites (frontal, vertex and parietal), whereas breath awareness brings about changes at the vertex alone.
doi:10.1186/1751-0759-7-11
PMCID: PMC3679963  PMID: 23721252
Alternate nostril yoga breathing; P300; Breath awareness; Cognitive processes
7.  Is yoga a suitable treatment for rheumatoid arthritis: current opinion 
We reviewed published literature regarding the use of yoga for managing rheumatoid arthritis to determine whether adequate evidence exists to suggest its usefulness as a therapy. A search for previous studies involving yoga and rheumatoid arthritis in PubMed yielded eight reports. These studies reported the benefits of yoga in the physical and mental health of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), suggesting that yoga is a useful add-on therapy for RA patients. However, all studies showed limitations with respect to sample size, study design, description and duration of yoga intervention, and assessment tools and statistical methods used. Additionally, the studies did not attempt to understand the mechanisms underlying observed benefits. Hence, evidence suggests a definite role of yoga in RA improvement, reducing pain, improving function, and creating a positive mental state. However, detailed analysis and additional studies are necessary to verify these observations.
doi:10.2147/OAJSM.S25707
PMCID: PMC3781903  PMID: 24198591
bibliographic database search; PubMed; rheumatoid arthritis; yoga
8.  Managing Mental Health Disorders Resulting from Trauma through Yoga: A Review 
There are many and varied types of trauma. The extent to which trauma influences the mental health of an individual depends on the nature of trauma, as well as on the individual's coping capabilities. Often trauma is followed by depression, anxiety, and PTSD. As the pharmacological remedies for these conditions often have undesirable side-effects, nonpharmacological remedies are thought of as a possible add-on treatment. Yoga is one such mind-body intervention. This paper covers eleven studies indexed in PubMed, in which mental health disorders resulting from trauma were managed through yoga including meditation. The aim was to evaluate the use of yoga in managing trauma-related depression, anxiety, PTSD and physiological stress following exposure to natural calamities, war, interpersonal violence, and incarceration in a correctional facility. An attempt has also been made to explore possible mechanisms underlying benefits seen. As most of these studies were not done on persons exposed to trauma that had practiced yoga, this is a definite area for further research.
doi:10.1155/2012/401513
PMCID: PMC3388328  PMID: 22778930
9.  Awareness about bibliographic databases among students of Ayurveda and qualified Ayurveda practitioners 
Students of Ayurveda and qualified Ayurveda practitioners were assessed for awareness about bibliographic databases. One hundred and four volunteers (age range 17–64 years; group mean±SD, 24.3 ± 7.9 years; 62 females) participated in this cross-sectional study. There were 3 groups. Group I had 60 undergraduate students of a bachelor's level course in Ayurveda, Group II had 20 graduate students of a 1-year Panchakarma course, and Group III had 24 Ayurveda physicians who were working in a yoga and Ayurveda center. An 8-question questionnaire was used for assessment. Undergraduates were found to be the best informed, followed by those who were working, while those doing post-graduation were the least well informed. The sample was from one institution; however, the findings emphasize the importance of updating the knowledge of post-graduates or those in practice.
doi:10.4103/0975-9476.96516
PMCID: PMC3371558  PMID: 22707859
Ayurveda; bibliographic databases; complementary and alternative medicine
10.  Finger dexterity and visual discrimination following two yoga breathing practices 
International Journal of Yoga  2012;5(1):37-41.
Background:
Practicing yoga has been shown to improve motor functions and attention. Though attention is required for fine motor and discrimination tasks, the effect of yoga breathing techniques on fine motor skills and visual discrimination has not been assessed.
Aim:
To study the effect of yoga breathing techniques on finger dexterity and visual discrimination.
Materials and Methods:
The present study consisted of one hundred and forty subjects who had enrolled for stress management. They were randomly divided into two groups, one group practiced high frequency yoga breathing while the other group practiced breath awareness. High frequency yoga breathing (kapalabhati, breath rate 1.0 Hz) and breath awareness are two yoga practices which improve attention. The immediate effect of high frequency yoga breathing and breath awareness (i) were assessed on the performance on the O′Connor finger dexterity task and (ii) (in) a shape and size discrimination task.
Results:
There was a significant improvement in the finger dexterity task by 19% after kapalabhati and 9% after breath awareness (P<0.001 in both cases, repeated measures ANOVA and post-hoc analyses). There was a significant reduction (P<0.001) in error (41% after kapalabhati and 21% after breath awareness) as well as time taken to complete the shape and size discrimination test (15% after kapalabhati and 15% after breath awareness; P<0.001) was also observed.
Conclusion:
Both kapalabahati and breath awareness can improve fine motor skills and visual discrimination, with a greater magnitude of change after kapalabhati.
doi:10.4103/0973-6131.91710
PMCID: PMC3276931  PMID: 22346064
Finger dexterity; shape and size discrimination; yoga breathing
11.  Heart rate variability changes during high frequency yoga breathing and breath awareness 
Background
Pre and post comparison after one minute of high frequency yoga breathing (HFYB) suggested that the HFYB modifies the autonomic status by increasing sympathetic modulation, but its effect during the practice was not assessed.
Methods
Thirty-eight male volunteers with group average age ± S.D., 23.3 ± 4.4 years were each assessed on two separate days in two sessions, (i) HFYB and (ii) breath awareness. Each session was for 35 minutes, with 3 periods, i.e., pre (5 minutes), during HFYB or breath awareness (15 minutes) and post (5 minutes).
Results
There was a significant decrease in NN50, pNN50 and the mean RR interval during and after HFYB and after breath awareness, compared to the respective 'pre' values (p < 0.05) (repeated measures ANOVA followed by post-hoc analysis). The LF power increased and HF power decreased during and after breath awareness and LF/HF ratio increased after breath awareness (p < 0.05).
Conclusion
The results suggest that there was reduced parasympathetic modulation during and after HFYB and increased sympathetic modulation with reduced parasympathetic modulation during and after breath awareness.
doi:10.1186/1751-0759-5-4
PMCID: PMC3088536  PMID: 21486495
12.  Post traumatic stress symptoms and heart rate variability in Bihar flood survivors following yoga: a randomized controlled study 
BMC Psychiatry  2010;10:18.
Background
An earlier study showed that a week of yoga practice was useful in stress management after a natural calamity. Due to heavy rain and a rift on the banks of the Kosi river, in the state of Bihar in north India, there were floods with loss of life and property. A week of yoga practice was given to the survivors a month after the event and the effect was assessed.
Methods
Twenty-two volunteers (group average age ± S.D, 31.5 ± 7.5 years; all of them were males) were randomly assigned to two groups, yoga and a non-yoga wait-list control group. The yoga group practiced yoga for an hour daily while the control group continued with their routine activities. Both groups' heart rate variability, breath rate, and four symptoms of emotional distress using visual analog scales, were assessed on the first and eighth day of the program.
Results
There was a significant decrease in sadness in the yoga group (p < 0.05, paired t-test, post data compared to pre) and an increase in anxiety in the control group (p < 0.05, paired t-test, post data compared to pre).
Conclusions
A week of yoga can reduce feelings of sadness and possibly prevent an increase in anxiety in flood survivors a month after the calamity.
Trial Registration
Clinical Trials Registry of India: CTRI/2009/091/000285
doi:10.1186/1471-244X-10-18
PMCID: PMC2836997  PMID: 20193089

Results 1-12 (12)