Contribution picture to the article "Yoga and Cancer" - Young woman with short hair meditates in a wheelchair.

Yoga and Cancer — A good remedy for feeling helpless

Coun­ter can­cer with gent­le yoga. Peo­p­le suf­fe­ring from can­cer often bene­fit from addi­tio­nal sup­port during or after their leng­thy and dif­fi­cult medi­cal tre­at­ments in order to regain balan­ce with them­sel­ves and their lives. And to do some­thing about the “at the mer­cy” fee­ling. Ill­ness brings a lot of uncer­tain­ty and fear. Can­cer pati­ents are often in a ten­se situation.

A stu­dy in 2019 pro­ved that gent­le yoga in con­junc­tion with rela­xa­ti­on and medi­ta­ti­on tech­ni­ques can res­to­re a sen­se of body and well-being to pati­ents. In total, the sci­en­tists eva­lua­ted 29 ran­do­mi­zed con­trol­led stu­dies on the influence of yoga on the well-being of adult can­cer patients. 

With the right exer­cise pro­gram, dise­a­se and the­ra­py-rela­ted sym­ptoms can be redu­ced. Hard times are bet­ter accept­ed and the effects of che­mo­the­ra­py, radia­ti­on and tablet the­ra­pies can be reduced.

Source: Over­view stu­dy on sym­ptom manage­ment in can­cer (2019)

Yoga improves quality of life with cancer

Yoga has a posi­ti­ve influence on the gene­ral qua­li­ty of life during and after can­cer the­ra­py. Abo­ve all, the phy­si­cal, emo­tio­nal and social well-being increa­ses and is also used for fur­ther prevention. 

The second area in which the­re has been clear impro­ve­ment is so-cal­led fati­gue: it is signi­fi­cant­ly redu­ced through regu­lar yoga. In addi­ti­on, yoga impro­ved cogni­ti­on, lym­phede­ma and vita­li­ty. The con­cen­tra­ti­on of various bio­mar­kers for stress and inflamm­a­ti­on also decreased. 

The ran­do­mi­zed con­trol­led tri­als on sym­ptom manage­ment in can­cer pati­ents main­ly included breast can­cer pati­ents. Howe­ver, stu­dy par­ti­ci­pan­ts with other can­cers (e.g. ova­ri­an can­cer) also show­ed posi­ti­ve results for bet­ter qua­li­ty of life, sleep and depression.

Abo­ve all, the emo­tio­nal sup­port, the so-cal­led “Feel Good”, is pro­mo­ted through gent­le yoga exer­ci­s­es with a focus on breathing and fle­xi­bi­li­ty. Yoga not only sup­ports the fight against can­cer, it also ser­ves as gene­ral pre­ven­ti­on against times of cri­sis. The­re are no nega­ti­ve effects from yoga. 

The con­clu­si­on of the sci­en­tists: Yoga offers cle­ar­ly reco­gnizable advan­ta­ges at low cos­ts — they would the­r­e­fo­re encou­ra­ge can­cer pati­ents to par­ti­ci­pa­te in appro­pria­te programs.

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