NEW DELHI: Yoga can significantly help lower blood pressure in patients who are pre-hypertensive, according to a recent study by doctors at the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital (SGRH), New Delhi.
The study, conducted by researchers from Department of Neurophysiology of the hospital, has found that six months of Yoga lifestyle intervention produces modest but clinically meaningful reductions in 24 hr ambulatory Systolic Blood Pressure (Upper level BP) and Diastolic Blood Pressure (Lower level BP).
As part of the study, which has been published in Journal of Hypertension - October 2018 edition, 120 patients were selected and randomly divided into two groups.
Patients in Group A (Yoga), were assigned to practice yoga – an intensive lifestyle modification, while patients in the Group B (Conventional), were prescribed the conventional lifestyle modifications (exercise, diet, smoking cessation).
24 hour diastolic BP at 12 weeks, particularly the night diastolic and mean arterial pressures, showed a significant decrease from the baseline in the Yoga group compared to the conventional group that underwent lifestyle modifications.
Dr. Nandini Agarwal, Author of the study, claimed, “This study has convincingly demonstrated that yoga intervention in patients with pre-hypertension can significantly reduce blood pressure”.
Dr. M. Gourie Devi, Chairperson, Department of Neurophysiology, stated, “Pre-hypertension is a precursor to clinical hypertension and is closely related with the increased incidence of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases.”
Dr. Sandeep Joshi, co-author of the study, said, “Reducing systolic blood pressure by just 3 mm Hg in the general population has the potential to reduce stroke mortality by 8% and coronary artery disease mortality by 5%. Yoga, a mind body technique, has been shown to be an excellent method of relaxation and stress control.”