The positive effects of Qigong continue to lap at the shores of mainstream media.
From Family Practice News
NEW ORLEANS – The traditional Chinese medical therapy known as quigong exercise resulted in significant reduction in fatigue scores in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome in a randomized controlled trial.
Qigong also led to significant improvement in validated measures of mental and physical health and spiritual well-being, Jessie S.M. Chan reported at the annual meeting of the Society of Behavioral Medicine.
A dose-response effect was evident. Practicing qigong for at least 30 minutes on at least 3 days per week produced better outcomes, according to Ms. Chan, a doctoral candidate at the University of Hong Kong.
Qigong, translated as "life energy cultivation," is an ancient Taoist art of self-healing. It’s an increasingly popular form of complementary and alternative medicine in the United States. It combines regulation of the body, mind, and breath through a program of gentle exercises and meditation.
From a traditional Chinese medicine perspective, Ms. Chan explained, chronic fatigue syndrome is caused by blood stasis due to a deficiency of Qi, or vital energy. The key treatment strategy entails restoring the balance between yin and yang and stimulation of the blood to get the Qi circulating.
From the perspective of the busy Western primary care physician, of course, chronic fatigue syndrome is an often frustrating condition for which up until now only two interventions have been shown beneficial: cognitive behavioral therapy and graded exercise training.
The randomized trial included 154 patients aged 18-55 years with unexplained chronic fatigue of at least 6 months duration plus multiple other findings consistent with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention definition of chronic fatigue syndrome. While participants met criteria for the syndrome, most of them did not carry a formal physician diagnosis, and thus would most accurately be said to have chronic fatigue syndrome–like illness, she noted.
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