Improve Diseased Kidney Function with Yoga

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

“Yoga combines both physical and spiritual elements which helps restores the body and revitalizes the mind. Some of the poses in yoga can improve the over health of the kidney and improve kidney function. This is an important step for preventing kidney problems and for slowing the progression of kidney disease.” – National Kidney Foundation

 

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is a serious and all too common medical problem that involves a gradual loss of kidney function over time. As a result, the body retains fluid and harmful wastes build up. This leads to feelings of fatigue, trouble concentrating, poor appetite, trouble sleeping, muscle cramps, swollen feet and ankles, puffiness around your eyes, dry, itchy skin, and need to urinate more often. It is not unusual for people to not realize that they have chronic kidney disease until their kidney function is down to 25% of normal. CKD can eventually lead to complete kidney failure requiring dialysis, to replace the work of the failed kidneys, or a kidney transplant. It is estimated that CKD is present in more than 26 million Americans. Without effective treatment, CKD can lead to heart disease and reduced longevity. There are, however, no cures for CKD and treatment focuses on slowing the progression of the kidney damage, usually by controlling the underlying cause.

 

Yoga practice has been found to be effective with treating a number of conditions that can lead to Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD). These include hypertension, diabetes, and artherosclerosis. So, it would seem reasonable to test yoga practice as a treatment for CKD. In today’s Research News article “Effects of 6 months yoga program on renal functions and quality of life in patients suffering from chronic kidney disease.” See:

https://www.facebook.com/ContemplativeStudiesCenter/photos/pb.627681673922429.-2207520000.1480152606./1393155440708378/?type=3&theater

or see summary below or view the full text of the study at:

http://www.ijoy.org.in/article.asp?issn=0973-6131;year=2017;volume=10;issue=1;spage=3;epage=8;aulast=Pandey

Pandy and colleagues recruited patients with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) and randomly assigned them to receive either treatment as usual or 6-months of yoga practice. The practice consisted of 15-20 minutes of poses, 10-15 minutes of breathing exercises, and 20 minutes of relaxation. Before and over the 6-months of treatment they measured the patients’ quality of life, blood pressure, blood urea, sodium, potassium, and creatinine levels. They found that at the end of 6-months of yoga practice there was a significant reduction of blood pressure, nonsignificant reduction in blood urea and serum creatinine, and significant improvement in physical and psychological quality of life in comparison to the treatment as usual group. In addition, there was a reduction in the need for dialysis in the yoga practice group.

 

These are encouraging results and suggest that yoga practice may be a safe and effective treatment for Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD).  The study, however, examined only a small number of patients and sufficient statistical power was not present to detect many possible effects. So, the study needs to be replicated with a larger sample of CKD patients. Also, it needs to be recognized that the study lacked a group who performed another light exercise over the treatment period. So, it cannot be determined if yoga practice is necessary for the benefits or if any light exercise would produce similar benefits. Regardless, it appears that the practice of yoga can help improve kidney function in patients with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD).

 

So, improve diseased kidney function with yoga.

 

“Yoga has been around for more than two millennia and has helped people everywhere overcome their medical conditions the natural way. While it is an effective method of keeping your kidneys healthy, yoga should not be used as a substitute for any medications that your doctor might have prescribed.” – India Times

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts

 

Study Summary

Pandey RK, Arya TV, Kumar A, Yadav A. Effects of 6 months yoga program on renal functions and quality of life in patients suffering from chronic kidney disease. Int J Yoga [serial online] 2017 [cited 2016 Nov 23];10:3-8. Available from: http://www.ijoy.org.in/text.asp?2017/10/1/3/186158

 

Abstract

Aim: To study the effect of 6 months yoga program in patients suffering from chronic kidney disease (CKD).
Materials and Methods: Fifty-four patients with CKD were studied and divided into two groups (yoga group and control group) to see the effect of yoga in CKD. Patients in the yoga group were offered yoga therapy along with other conventional treatment modalities, while the control group was only on conventional treatment. Subjects in yoga group were trained to perform specific yogic asanas for at least 5 days a week for 40-60 min a day. Regular monitoring of blood pressure, renal function, requirement of a number of dialysis, and quality of life (QOL) indicators were done. Fifty patients (yoga – 25; control-25) completed 6 months follow-up.
Results: In yoga group, a significant reduction of systolic and diastolic blood pressure, significant reduction in blood urea and serum creatinine levels, and significant improvement in physical and psychological domain of the World Health Organization QOL (as assessed by BREF QOL scores) were seen after 6 months. In control group, rise of blood pressure, deterioration of renal function, and QOL were observed. Poststudy comparison between the two groups showed a statistically significant reduction of blood pressure, nonsignificant reduction in blood urea and serum creatinine, and significant improvement in physical and psychological domain of QOL in yoga group as compared to control group. For subjects in yoga group, the need for dialysis was less when compared to control group although this difference was statistically insignificant. Except for inability of some patients to perform certain yogic asanas no adverse effect was found in the study.
Conclusion: Six months yoga program is safe and effective as an adjuvant therapy in improving renal functions and QOL of CKD patients.

http://www.ijoy.org.in/article.asp?issn=0973-6131;year=2017;volume=10;issue=1;spage=3;epage=8;aulast=Pandey

Improve Physical Condition in Dialysis Patients with Tai Chi

 

By John M. de Castro, Ph.D.

 

“One of the best features of tai chi and qi gong is that they can be adapted to fit just about any fitness level. The gentle flowing low-impact movements are easy on your joints if you have arthritis. You can even do them seated or in a wheelchair if needed.” – Jodi Helmer

 

End-stage renal disease (ESRD) is a serious and all too common medical problem that results from a total and permanent failure of the kidneys. As a result, the body retains fluid and harmful wastes build up. Treatment, usually dialysis, is required to replace the work of the failed kidneys. Kidney dialysis uses a machine to filter harmful wastes, salt, and excess fluid from your blood. This restores the blood to a normal, healthy balance. Without dialysis or a kidney transplant the ESRD patient cannot survive It is estimated that ESRD occurs in more than 650,000 patients per year in the United States and is increasing by 5% per year. Those who live with ESRD are 1% of the U.S. Medicare population but account for 7% of the Medicare budget. Worldwide there are an estimated 2 million ESRD patients.

 

End-stage renal disease (ESRD) is frequently accompanied by a number of other serious diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Making matters worse is the fact that ESRD patients are most often sedentary. Moderate exercise, by improving cardiovascular performance and lowering insulin resistance, can be very helpful in preventing or coping with these comorbidities. But, great care must be used with exercise for the compromised ESRD patients.

 

Tai Chi training is designed to enhance and regulate the functional activities of the body through regulated breathing, mindful concentration, and gentle movements. It has been shown to have psychological and physical benefits particularly for the elderly. Because it is not strenuous, involving slow gentle movements, and is safe, having no appreciable side effects, it is appropriate for individuals with compromising conditions such as ESRD. So, it would seem that tai chi practice would be well suited as an exercise for dialysis patients.

 

In today’s Research News article “Evaluation of Exercise Tolerance in Dialysis Patients Performing Tai Chi Training: Preliminary Study.” See:

https://www.facebook.com/ContemplativeStudiesCenter/photos/a.628903887133541.1073741828.627681673922429/1337845682906021/?type=3&theater

or see summary below or view the full text of the study at:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4980525/

Dziubek and colleagues provided dialysis patients with tai chi training for 60 minutes, twice a week for 6-months. They were closely monitored during all sessions for blood pressure. Heart rate was also measured to insure it was maintained at 50% or less of the maximal heart rate appropriate for the patients age. At the beginning and end of training a 6-minute walk test was performed on a treadmill and a stress test for oxygen uptake was performed on an exercise bicycle.

 

They found that after tai chi training the patients walked significantly further and reported less fatigue on the 6-minute treadmill walk and lasted longer on the bicycle stress test with no differences in heart rate or blood pressure. Hence, tai chi training appeared to improve the physical condition of the patients. It should be noted that there wasn’t a comparison condition or control group. So, it is not known if the patients would have improved without training and if other forms of exercise might be superior. Further research is needed to clarify these issues. The results though show that tai chi training is a safe and effective exercise for ESRD patients on dialysis. This is important as the exercise is needed to help maintain the health of these compromised patients.

 

So, improve physical condition in dialysis patients with tai chi.

 

“Tai chi is often described as “meditation in motion,” but it might well be called “medicationin motion.” There is growing evidence that this mind-body practice, which originated in China as a martial art, has value in treating or preventing many health problems.” – Harvard Health Blog

 

CMCS – Center for Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies

 

This and other Contemplative Studies posts are also available on Google+ https://plus.google.com/106784388191201299496/posts

 

Study Summary

Dziubek, W., Bulińska, K., Kusztal, M., Kowalska, J., Rogowski, Ł., Zembroń-Łacny, A., … Woźniewski, M. (2016). Evaluation of Exercise Tolerance in Dialysis Patients Performing Tai Chi Training: Preliminary Study. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : eCAM, 2016, 5672580. http://doi.org/10.1155/2016/5672580

 

Abstract

Introduction. Patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) have poor physical performance and exercise capacity due to frequent dialysis treatments. Tai Chi exercises can be very useful in the area of rehabilitation of people with ESRD. Objectives. The aim of the study was to assess exercise capacity in ESRD patients participating in 6-month Tai Chi training.

Patients and Methods. Twenty dialysis patients from Wroclaw took part in the training; at the end of the project, 14 patients remained (age 69.2 ± 8.6 years). A 6-minute walk test (6MWT) and spiroergometry were performed at the beginning and after 6 months of training.

Results. After 6 months of Tai Chi, significant improvements were recorded in mean distance in the 6MWT (387.89 versus 436.36 m), rate of perceived exertion (7.4 versus 4.7), and spiroergometry (8.71 versus 10.08 min).

Conclusions. In the ESRD patients taking part in Tai Chi training, a definite improvement in exercise tolerance was recorded after the 6-month training. Tai Chi exercises conducted on days without dialysis can be an effective and interesting form of rehabilitation for patients, offering them a chance for a better quality of life and fewer falls and hospitalisations that are the result of it.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4980525/