Control Weight in Diabetes with Yoga


The medical literature tells us that the most effective ways to reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and many more problems are through healthy diet and exercise. Our bodies have evolved to move, yet we now use the energy in oil instead of muscles to do our work.” – David Suzuki

Type 2 diabetes is a common and increasingly prevalent illness that is largely preventable. Although this has been known as adult-onset diabetes it is increasingly being diagnosed in children. It is estimated that 30 million people in the United States have diabetes and the numbers are growing. One of the reasons for the increasing incidence of Type 2 Diabetes is its association with overweight and obesity which is becoming epidemic in the industrialized world.

Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death in the United States. In addition, diabetes is heavily associated with other diseases such as cardiovascular disease, heart attacks, stroke, blindness, kidney disease, and circulatory problems leading to amputations. As a result, diabetes doubles the risk of death of any cause compared to individuals of the same age without diabetes.

A leading cause of Type II Diabetes is overweight and obesity and a sedentary life style. Hence, treatment and prevention of Type II Diabetes focuses on diet, exercise, and weight control. Yoga would appear to be an excellent potential treatment for Type II Diabetes as it is both an exercise and a help in weight control (see

In today’s Research News article “Yoga: Managing overweight in mid-life T2DM”

Tikhe and colleagues tested the effects of a 7-day integrated approach of yoga therapy (IAYT) on patients with Type II Diabetes. They found that the program resulted in a significant loss in weight and body mass index (BMI), resting metabolism, and body fat.

Yoga appears to be a potential safe and effective treatment for Type II Diebetes. In addition yoga is known to strengthen the immune system (see making the individual less susceptible to infection, helping to ward of potential secondary consequences of diabetes. These are exciting results that need to be confirmed in a large controlled trial. Many treatments for disease are not well tolerated by the patient and compliance becomes a huge issue. But, yoga is generally enjoyed and compliance rates, when administered properly, can be very high. So, yoga would appear to have advantages over other treatments.

So, practice yoga and control weight.

Diabetes is a great example whereby, giving the patient the tools, you can manage yourself very well.Clayton Christensen

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

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