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Yoga: Do the exercises help with mental illness?

Yoga exercises have a preventive effect against mental illness.
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  1. Gentle therapy
  2. Mode of action of yoga
  3. Studies not yet resilient

Gentle therapy

The Far Eastern movement theory yoga is designed to give the body energy and provide taut muscles. However, the exercises have other positive effects and can, for example, help against mental illness . These include , but are not limited to, depression, schizophrenia and ADHD .

Mode of action of yoga

Yoga has long been considered a true all-rounder: So should the kinematics not only preserve youth and beauty, but also help against diseases. Biomarker-based studies are now showing that yoga is effective in mental illnesses such as ADHD, mild depression, schizophrenia, and sleep disorders. So yoga influences key elements of metabolism in a similar way to what antidepressants or psychotherapy do. Among other things, the concentrations of certain neurotransmitters and indicators of oxidative stress changed in the body of the study participants who performed the exercises. In short, the aggressive molecules that damage the cells decreased.

The studies also looked at the effects of yoga on eating disorders and memory problems. Here, however, no positive effect could be detected.

Studies not yet resilient

Researchers evaluated more than 100 studies on the relationship between yoga and mental illness. Only 16 of them were methodologically good enough, according to the scientists, to come to a closer look. Accordingly, the results can only be considered provisional, partly because the number of participants was so low.

More in-depth investigations are therefore necessary before yoga is considered as a treatment for mental illnesses such as depression, schizophrenia or ADHD. So far, the exercises can not replace regular therapy. However, nothing speaks against yoga as an accompanying therapeutic measure, since the Far Eastern movement theory has no side effects.