Qigong is an ancient mind-body practice for which a number of previous studies have suggested beneficial health effects. Lorenzo Cohen, from the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (Texas, USA), and colleagues enrolled 96 women with stages 1-3 breast cancer residing in Shanghai, China. Forty-nine patients were randomized to a qigong group consisting of five 40-minute classes each week during their five-to-six week course of radiation therapy, while 47 women comprised a waitlist control group receiving the standard of care. The program incorporated a modified version of Chinese medical qigong consisting of synchronizing one's breath with various exercises. Participants in both groups completed assessments at the beginning, middle and end of radiation therapy and then one and three months later. Different aspects of quality of life were measured including depressive symptoms, fatigue, sleep disturbances and overall quality of life. Patients in the qigong group reported a steady decline in depressive symptom scores beginning at the end of radiation therapy with a mean score of 12.3, through the three month post-radiation follow-up with a score of 9.5. No changes were noted in the control group over time. The study also found qigong was especially helpful for women reporting high baseline depressive symptoms. The study authors conclude that: “The current results indicated that qigong may have therapeutic effects in the management of [quality of life] among women who are receiving radiotherapy for breast cancer. Benefits were particularly evident for patients who had preintervention elevated levels of depressive symptoms.”
Chen Z, Meng Z, Milbury K, Bei W, Zhang Y, Thornton B, Liao Z, Wei Q, Chen J, Guo X, Liu L, McQuade J, Kirschbaum C, Cohen L. “Qigong improves quality of life in women undergoing radiotherapy for breast cancer: Results of a randomized controlled trial.” Cancer. 2013 Jan 25.
Daily supplements of lutein, a carotenoid compound, may help to improve vision under low ambient light conditions.
Cardiac disease is an independent risk factor for mild cognitive impairments presaging vascular dementia, among older women.
The ancient Chinese mind-body practice of qigong reduces depressive symptoms and improves quality of life, among women undergoing radiotherapy for breast cancer
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The timing of meals may predict the achievement of weight management goals.
Dysfunctional pathway may explain the relationship between brain deterioration, sleep disruption and memory loss as we age.
Small amounts of activity – 1 or 2-minutes at a time that add up to 30 minutes a day – may be as beneficial as longer bouts of structured exercise.
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DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone), a hormone secreted by the adrenal glands, helps to alleviate menopausal symptoms.
Study results suggest that regularly taking certain supplements, including multivitamins, folic acid, iron, and copper, may increase the risk of death in older
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UK study reveals that tall women may be at greater overall risk for cancer, with significant increases in risk for each four-inch increase in height.
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Tip #124 - Work Out at Work
If you are one of the millions with a desk job, be sure to get out of your chair once an hour for 5-10 minutes to do some standing stretches.
Gently stretch your shoulders, arms, neck, back, sides, chest, and calves. This can improve circulation and relieve neck and back stiffness.
Done regularly, this also can improve your motivation to do some serious aerobic exercise after your workday ends.