Chinese mind-body therapy boosts health for people with chronic disease

UQ researcher Dr Xin Liu proves ancient Chinese mind-body movement therapy could offer dramatic health benefits for people with chronic conditions such as diabetes or obesity.

(Medical Xpress)—A University of Queensland study has shown ancient Chinese mind-body movement therapy could offer dramatic health benefits for people with chronic conditions such as diabetes or obesity.

The study examined whether adults with diabetes or at risk of could improve their health by undertaking the SMILE Wellness program, a low-impact gentle mind-body movement therapy based on Tai Chi and Qigong.

Researcher Dr Xin Liu, from UQ's School of Medicine, said the study results were encouraging.

"The therapeutic program resulted in many for participants, including reduced blood sugar, , body weight and waist circumference," Dr Liu said.

"Average blood sugar levels decreased by six per cent, blood pressure decreased by nine per cent, and and waist circumference decreased by four per cent and three per cent respectively."

Participants also showed improvements in mental health, strength and flexibility, sleeping patterns, immunity, pain reduction and quality of life.

"The SMILE Wellness program may be the first exercise program to scientifically demonstrate the significant effects of exercise alone on the management of diabetes, weight and , depression and stress," Dr Liu said.

"The program may be most beneficial for those who are unable or unwilling to participate in conventional types of physical activity, such as strength training or gym-based exercises."

The study was funded by the Diabetes Australia Research Trust and findings have been published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine and the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

The SMILE Wellness program is now being offered to the public to benefit the community.

More information: "Qi-Gong Mind–Body Therapy and Diabetes Control: A Randomized Controlled Trial." Xin Liu, Yvette D. Miller, Nicola W. Burton, Jiun-Horng Chang, Wendy J. Brown. American Journal of Preventive Medicine August 2011, Vol. 41, Issue 2, Pages 152-158, DOI: 10.1016/j.amepre.2011.04.007

"A preliminary study of the effects of Tai Chi and Qigong medical exercise on indicators of metabolic syndrome, glycaemic control, health-related quality of life, and psychological health in adults with elevated blood glucose." X Liu, Y D Miller, N W Burton, W J Brown. Br J Sports Med 2010;44:10 704-709 Published Online First: 16 October 2008 DOI: 10.1136/bjsm.2008.051144

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Innovative program helps treat depression and obesity

Oct 19, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- A University of Queensland pilot study to evaluate the effectiveness of an innovative traditional Chinese exercise program on depression and obesity has produced very promising results.

Recommended for you

Can YouTube save your life?

6 hours ago

Only a handful of CPR and basic life support (BLS) videos available on YouTube provide instructions which are consistent with recent health guidelines, according to a new study published in Emergency Medicine Australasia, the jo ...

Doctors frequently experience ethical dilemmas

7 hours ago

(HealthDay)—For physicians trying to balance various financial and time pressures, ethical dilemmas are common, according to an article published Aug. 7 in Medical Economics.

AMGA: Physician turnover still high in 2013

7 hours ago

(HealthDay)—For the second year running, physician turnover remains at the highest rate since 2005, according to a report published by the American Medical Group Association (AMGA).

Obese or overweight teens more likely to become smokers

8 hours ago

A study examining whether overweight or obese teens are at higher risk for substance abuse finds both good and bad news: weight status has no correlation with alcohol or marijuana use but is linked to regular ...

Taking preventive health care into community spaces

9 hours ago

A church. A city park. An office. These are not the typical settings for a medical checkup. But a new nationwide study by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research shows that providing health services in ...

User comments