Yoga Helps Improve Lung Function

A new study finds that twice-weekly yoga helps people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

A new study found that yoga could be beneficial for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), an incurable lung disease that includes chronic bronchitis, emphysema, or both.

Study participants showed improvement in lung function, shortness of breath, and inflammation after practicing yoga for 12 weeks, according to a press release by the American College of Chest Physicians.

“We found that yoga can be a simple, cost-effective method that can help improve quality of life in patients with COPD,” said study presenter Randeep Guleria, M.D.

For the study, 29 COPD patients practiced yoga twice a week for an hour. Their yoga routine included yoga asanas, pranayama, kriyas (cleansing techniques), and meditation.

COPD, which affects approximately 24 million Americans and is often caused by cigarette smoking, but controlling symptoms can help improve the quality of life for patients, researchers said.