Effects of yoga on blood pressure levels in normotensive and hypertensive subjects /

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Health Science (PhD)


Biological and Biomedical Sciences


Hypertension is the most important risk factor for stroke and the fourth most prevalent disease in the world. It affects about 20% of the adult population in the developed and developing countries, which if not treated results in target organ damage. In 95% of patients with elevated blood pressure the cause is not known. Anti-hypertensive drugs available are not ideal. People are looking for more natural, safe and non-invasive healing modalities. In our study, we used behavioral interventional method to evaluate its effects on the blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, lipid profile, body mass index, effect on antihypertensive drug dosage and psychological stress. Sixty subjects were included in the study. They were divided into three groups on the basis of their blood pressure levels. Group 1 consisted of subjects with high normal blood pressure. In group 2 were the mild hypertensive subjects. Group 3 included moderately hypertensive subjects. All the groups were subjected to the yoga exercise plan for ten weeks. Our results showed significant decrease in all the physiological and biochemical parameters except that HDL in group 1 is significantly increased while in group 2 and 3 there is no significant increase. Lowdensity lipoprotein (LDL) showed significant decrease in group 1 and group 3, but does not show any significant decrease in group 2. In majority of hypertensive subjects drug dosage decreased and most of our subjects reported reduction in psychological stress. So we conclude that yoga is beneficial to reduce blood pressure, body mass index and drug dosage, with regular practice it can improve the lipid profile. It can have a profound effect to mitigate psychological stress. These effects may be through modifying sympathetic and parasympathetic neuronal activity_ So yoga has the potential to become a modern method to ameliorate modern day illnesses.

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