The official new treatment for depression is YOGA.
That’s the gist of new research from the scientists at Duke University. They reviewed more than 100 studies on the effects of yoga - on a variety of psychiatric disorders – and they found that yoga absolutely has real benefits for people suffering from problems like insomnia, ADHD and depression.
In fact, the researchers went as far as to say that yoga may affect some people in ways similar to taking antidepressants. That’s because yoga seems to influence brain chemicals in a way that boosts our feel-good brain chemicals, while lowering inflammation and stress. And experts say that can play a key role in improving our mental health.
That’s good news for the estimated 40 million people taking psychiatric drugs today. Because a recent study from the National Institute of Mental Health shows that about 2-in-3 people who are on those meds never get over their depressive symptoms! They’re people like one cancer survivor we read about, who had been taking a popular antidepressant while going through chemo and radiation therapy. He says the drug didn’t help with his depression. But after he signed up for a yoga class, he says it made him feel stronger, relaxed, and like his “old self again."
But Duke researchers say that, although this new research confirms yoga’s mental health benefits, it doesn’t mean you should ditch your psychiatric meds - just because you’re doing some downward dog. Because there are many cases where medication is essential to mental health! However, when it comes to treating depression, don’t be surprised if more doctors start recommending yoga – either combined with a prescription – or instead of taking pills.