(Brought to you by Dr. Deborah Simmons)
We have been teaching a lot lately about the Six Dimensions of Holistic Treatment for Depression (Relational, Biological, Energetic, Physical, Cognitive, and Spiritual). I thought you might be interested in this article from the January/February 2011 issue of AARP: The Magazine, entitled “Do Yoga, Be Happy”. Dr. Chris Streeter’s conclusion? Yoga has an effect on brain chemistry similar to that of antidepressants. It beats walking, too.
DO YOGA, BE HAPPY
As a mood booster, yoga beats walking
By Holly St. Lifer
Feeling blue? Try a downward-facing-dog pose. A new study from Boston University School of Medicine found that yoga boosted mood more effectively than walking. Doing an hour of yoga three times a week for 12 weeks increased GABA levels by 13 percent, as measured in the study’s healthy participants right after a session. GABA, a neurotransmitter in the brain, is lower in people who are depressed; levels rise with the use of meds. The walkers showed no significant increase in GABA levels. “This is the first study to find a behavioral intervention—yoga, in this case—that has an effect on brain chemistry similar to that of antidepressants,” says study author Chris Streeter, MD.