Creating harmony and balance in your life while dealing with breast cancer can be difficult. Complementary medicine techniques like yoga are thought to improve your mood, quality of life and ability to cope while conventional treatment does its work. While scientific research on most complementary therapies is relatively new and the studies are small, early results have shown that some complementary therapies may help ease physical and emotional symptoms in some people. When combined with conventional medicine, complementary therapies may offer a more integrated approach to healing. A study shows that yoga has benefits for women with advanced breast cancer.
Yoga, which means "union," is a 5,000-year-old system of principles and practices originating in India. Yoga incorporates nutrition guidelines, ethics, exercise, and meditation with the intention of bringing together the mind, body, and spirit. One of the most frequently practiced types of yoga is called hatha yoga, which uses physical poses and breathing techniques to increase strength, flexibility, and well-being. Research in breast cancer patients has shown that yoga may be able to improve strength, enhance sleep quality, reduce fatigue, and improve overall quality of life.
In the breastcancer.org Complementary Medicine section you can learn about 16 types of complementary techniques, including yoga. You'll learn about:
- what to expect
- how to find a qualified practitioner
- important things to consider before trying a technique
As you try to balance your life during breast cancer treatment, you might want to think about whether a complementary medicine technique might be right for you.