Yoga is a “stand-alone” option for hypertension: meta-analysis

  • Wu Y & al.
  • Mayo Clin Proc
  • 6 Feb 2019

  • curated by Emily Willingham, PhD
  • Clinical Essentials
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Takeaway

  • Yoga with breathing and mental relaxation exercises serves as an independent treatment for hypertension, according to the results of this meta-analysis.
  • 3 sessions a week yield 11 and 6 mmHg reductions in systolic and diastolic BP, respectively.

Why this matters

  • Yoga might represent an accessible lifestyle modification for reducing BP.

Key results

  • BP reductions with yoga vs no yoga (weight mean effect side; 95% CIs):
    • Systolic: −0.47 (95% CI, −0.62 to −0.32); −5.0 mmHg reduction.
    • Diastolic: −0.47 (95% CI, −0.61 to −0.32); −3.9 mmHg reduction.
    • Both P<.001 vs controls yoga>
  • Moderate methodological study quality; high bias risk for many.

Study design

  • Results from 49 controlled trials included; range, 10-238 participants.
  • Funding: NIH, others.

Limitations

  • High bias risk, heterogeneity, some evidence of publication bias.