|Year : 2015 | Volume
| Issue : 1 | Page : 162-164
An innovative approach in health sciences: Yoga for obesity
Sharma Dushyant, Tekur Padmini, Tikhe Sham Ganpat, Nagendra Hongasandra Ramarao
Department of Yoga and Management, Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana University, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
|Date of Web Publication||13-Apr-2015|
Dr. Tikhe Sham Ganpat
Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana University, (Prashanti Kutiram), 19, Eknath Bhavan, Gavipuram Circle, Kempegowda Nagar, Bangalore - 560 019, Karnataka
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Obesity is a global health burden and its prevalence is increasing substantially due to changing lifestyle. A yoga-based lifestyle intervention appears to be a promising option in obesity. The present study is designed to assess the effects of Integrated Approach of Yoga Therapy (IAYT) in patients with obesity. Twenty-four obese patients (8 males and 16 females) between18 to 60 years were assessed on the first and last day of a 7 days' residential intensive IAYT program. The body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), hip circumferences (HC), and mid-arm circumference (MC) were recorded before and after the IAYT program. Paired Samples t test (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences, SPSS-16) was used to compare the means before (pre) and after (post) the intervention. The statistical analysis showed that there was a significant (P < 0.01, all comparisons) decrease (Ϳ) in mean body weight from 86.52 ± 15.23 to 84.54 ± 14.95 (2.29% Ϳ), mean BMI from 32.04 ± 5.02 to 31.30 ± 4.88 (2.33% Ϳ), WC by 3.46% Ϳ, HC by 4.65% Ϳ, and MC by 4.74% Ϳ. The results suggest that IAYT program was beneficial for patients with obesity and may offer better option to obesity-related problems. Randomized control trials are needed before a strong recommendation can be made.
Keywords: Body mass index, circumference, integrated approach of yoga therapy, obesity
|How to cite this article:|
Dushyant S, Padmini T, Ganpat TS, Ramarao NH. An innovative approach in health sciences: Yoga for obesity. Arch Med Health Sci 2015;3:162-4
| Introduction|| |
Most of the primary healthcare providers are convinced of their critical role in obesity management but do not feel sufficiently competent and look for acceptable and effective interventions to tackle the problem of increasing prevalence of obesity.  We know that there exists an etiological relationship between obesity and stress.  It is also well-documented that yoga has been utilized as a therapeutic tool to achieve positive health and treat stress-related diseases  through self-regulatory behavioral change that improves autonomic balance.  Yoga is known to be an effective tool to reduce anxiety and depression symptoms as well as the body mass index (BMI) in obese subjects.  The present study was designed to assess the effect of Integrated Approach of Yoga Therapy (IAYT) on anthropometric variables in patients with obesity.
| Materials and Methods|| |
The data derived from the previous study with similar design on yoga  has been used to calculate effect size using G Power. The power analysis (alpha = 0.05, power = 0.50, effect size = 0.5196) yielded a number of 24 subjects for the study.
Both male and female patients with obesity.
Physically unable to participate and those participating in other interventions.
An informed consent was obtained from all the participants and the study was approved by the institutional review board of Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana (S-VYASA) University, Bangalore.
This is a single group pre-post study. Twenty-four obesity patients (8 males and 16 females) between18 to 60 years of age participated in IAYT program at the residential wellness center of S-VYASA University, Bangalore, India.
The IAYT program  was practiced by all the participants of this study. It includes Kriya (yogic cleansing techniques), Sukhma Vyayama (loosening and stretching practices), Suryanamaskara (salutation to the sun), Asanas (postures), Pranayama (breathing practices), relaxation techniques, meditation, lectures on yoga philosophy, group discussions, and devotional session along with individualized low-fat-high-fiber vegetarian yogic diet [Table 1].
The BMI is a measure for human body shape based on an individual's mass and height. It is defined as the individual's body mass divided by the square of their height, with the value universally being given in units of kg/m 2 . Height and weight were recorded for each participant to determine their BMI. Height was measured on a tape attached to a wall and rounded down to nearest centimeter. Weight was measured on a body fat monitor HBF 375 (Omron Co., Ltd, Singapore) and rounded up to nearest kilogram. Cut-off points according to World Health Organization (WHO)  were used to define the prevalence of obesity. The hip circumference (HC), waist circumference (WC), and mid-arm circumference (MC) were measured by a tape in centimeter.
Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) 16.0 showed that the data is normally distributed. Hence, Paired Samples t test was used to compare the means before (pre) and after (post) the intervention.
| Results|| |
Following the 7-days IAYT program, there was a significant (P < 0.01, all comparisons) decrease (↓) in mean body weight from 86.52 ± 15.23 to 84.54 ± 14.95 (2.29% ↓), mean BMI from 32.04 ± 5.02 to 31.30 ± 4.88 (2.33% ↓), WC by 3.46% ↓, HC by 4.65% ↓, and MC by 4.74% ↓↓ [Table 2].
| Discussion|| |
Medical authorities have identified obesity as a causal factor in the development of diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease and more broadly of metabolic syndrome/insulin resistance syndrome. To provide solutions that can modify this risk factor, researchers need to identify methods of effective risk reduction and primary prevention of obesity. Research on the effectiveness of yoga as a treatment for obesity is limited, and studies vary in overall quality and methodological rigor. The present study is an indication of positive impact of IAYT in patients with obesity by reducing BMI, WC, HC, and MC effectively. The underlying principle of the benefits seen in this study may be attributed to the following key features: 
It is well-known that psychobiological wellness and social support can contribute to a better understanding and management of obesity.  IAYT offers a holistic approach to care and management with a strong conceptual basis for self regulation and mastery over the modifications of mind as defined by sage Patanjali in chapter 1 aphorism 2 of Patanjali Yoga Sutra. It is possible to promote better health and well-being in those with obesity as yoga offers innovative solutions at low cost, with easy stretches with emphasis on relaxation that makes it acceptable and effective and hence may be used as an add on or alternative in public health programs for management of obesity. 
- Supervised practice,
- Long duration of intervention,
- Yogic dietary component,
- A residential set up away from all responsibilities, and
- The comprehensive module of yoga that emphasized on mind and stress management.
| Conclusion|| |
The present study suggests that IAYT may be adopted as a way of life to deal with obesity. Randomized control trials are needed before a strong recommendation can be made.
| Acknowledgement|| |
Authors acknowledge Chancellor of S-VYASA University for granting permission to carry out this work.
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[Table 1], [Table 2]