Living a healthier life doesn’t have to be hard. That’s the conclusion of a new study, which found that using relaxation techniques such as meditation and yoga can reduce the number of hospital visits you might need.
The explanation is simple. Though stress-related illnesses won’t usually kill you outright, the damage they do accumulates over time. Those who suffer from them visit hospitals a lot more than others. By one estimate, these people comprise 70% of doctors’ caseloads.
Relaxation techniques range from the age-old (such as yoga or tai-chi) to the new-age (such as mindfulness therapy), and they have a lot in common. The theory is that the relaxation response they elicit relieves stress and anxiety.
The trouble, however, is that, unlike drugs, it’s not always easy to measure the impact of relaxation techniques. And for doctors to prescribe such techniques as medical treatment, evidence is necessary. To find that evidence, researchers at the Massachusetts General Hospital conducted a retrospective analysis. Continue reading >>