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If applied in right “doses”, yoga and breathing exercises can improve symptoms of depression and anxiety in both short and long terms, reveal new research.
Published in the Journal of Psychiatric Practice, the study from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) provided evidence that yoga can be a helpful complementary treatment for clinical depression or major depressive disorder.
To reach this conclusion, a group of 30 clinically depressed patients were randomly divided into two groups.
Both groups engaged in lyengar yoga (founded by B.K.S. Iyengar) and coherent breathing with the only difference being the number of instructional and home sessions in which each group participated.
Over three months, the high-dose group spent 123 hours in sessions while the low-dose group spent 87 hours.
Results showed that within a month, both groups’ sleep quality significantly improved.
Tranquility, positivity, physical exhaustion and symptoms of anxiety and depression significantly improved in both groups, as measured by several validated clinical scales
“Think of it this way, we give medications in different doses in order to enact their effects on the body to varying degrees. Here, we explored the same concept, but used yoga. We call that a dosing study,” explained Chris Streeter, associate professor of psychiatry at BUSM.
Past yoga and depression studies have not really delved deeply into this.
“The data is crucial for accompanying investigations of underlying neurobiology that will help elucidate ‘how’ yoga works,” added study co-author Marisa M. Silveri, neuroscientist at McLean Hospital and associate professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.
Research has shown combining therapy and medication has greater success than either treatment alone.
Although studies with more participants would be helpful in further investigating its benefits, this small study indicates adding yoga to the prescription may be helpful. (IANS)
By- Sunidhi Beeliya
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U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris said final congressional passage of the Biden administration's major infrastructure plan comes down to "a fundamental issue" of the lack of water brought on by climate change.
Harris made the comments Monday during a visit to Lake Mead, a man-made reservoir near the gambling and tourist destination city of Las Vegas, Nevada, which provides drinking water and electricity for more than 40 million people across seven western U.S. states and northern Mexico.
The U.S. government in August declared the first-ever water shortage at Lake Mead, which has fallen to record lows amid a two decade-long drought in the Western United States. The shortage has forced officials to impose water rationing next year for Nevada, the neighboring state of Arizona and Mexico.
A buoy once used to warn of a submerged rock rests on the ground along the waterline near a closed boat ramp on Lake Mead at the Lake Mead National Recreation Area, Friday, Aug. 13, 2021, near Boulder City, Nev. Water levels at Lake Mead Image credit: VOA
During the visit, the vice president promoted a $550 billion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, an agreement reached earlier this year between President Joe Biden and a bipartisan group of senators. The investment includes tens of billions of dollars to shore up the nation's water infrastructure and protect communities against the impact of climate change, including lingering heat waves and droughts, along with investments in water recycling and technology to convert sea water into usable drinking water.
"This is about thinking ahead, recognizing where we are and where we're headed -- if we don't address these issues with a sense of urgency, understanding this is literally about life," Harris said.
The infrastructure plan has been approved by the U.S. Senate, but is stalled in the House over intense and increasingly bitter negotiations over funding for the president's $3.5 trillion Build Back Better plan, which would provide a significant boost to the nation's social safety net. (VOA/RN)
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