Depressed Heart Disease Patients Should Consider Introducing Tai Chi. A team from the University of Arizona analyzed the results of 15 clinical trials involving 1,853 people. The average age of the participants was 66 and 44% were female. This is the first combined review of clinical trials in the past decade examining theeffect of tai chi on psychological well-being in adults with coronary heart disease, heart failure, hypertension and stroke. The findings of this study were published on June 9 in theEuropean Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, a journal of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).
Tai chi combines series of movements with relaxation exercisesand breathing. The researchers found that the practice of tai chi was linked to a decrease in symptoms of depressionas well as a mood enhancement and the overall quality of life of patients. This is because patients with cardiovascular disease often have a poor quality of life due to unpleasant symptoms such as shortness of breath. As the European Society of Cardiology explains, the link with anxiety was not statistically significant, possibly due to the insufficient number of patients.
Mental health benefits
Precisely, the depressive symptoms affect approximately 20% of patients with coronary artery disease, 20% of patients with heart failure, 27% of those with high blood pressure, and over one-third (35%) of stroke survivors. ” If you have had a heart attack or one stroke, or if you are affected by other heart disease, I would highly recommend adding tai chi to your recovery and rehabilitation Said study author Dr. Ruth Taylor-Piliae from the University of Arizona. And to add: ” There are physical benefits like a better balance and it’s good for the Mental Health too “.
However, this activity did not affect all patients. For example, no significant impact was noted on the well-being of stroke survivors. ” This is because there were very few studies on psychological well-being or quality of life variables in this group. There is a lot of research on tai chi in stroke survivors, but almost all of them have looked at physical functions such as balance and gait. », Explains Ruth Taylor-Piliae.
In order to confirm the impact of tai chi on mental health, other studies must be carried out but the main author of this analysis already has her idea on the reason for the multiple benefits: ” I think this is the synergy between postures and breathing. During tai chi, you have good body posture, and research has shown that it improves mood. We also know that hold your breath can cause stress and anxiety “.
One downside, however, she warns against a practice without supervision which can cause some knee pain. “ Tai chi is well suited for people of any age or exercise capacity and can be safely adapted for anyone. People with little tolerance for exercise or breathing problems can do this in a chair. Group classes for other people with cardiovascular disease are a positive place for social support and companionship – there is no judgment; you just do what you can “.