Saturday, February 13, 2010

Scientific evaluation of yoga’s effects on health stressed

Vice-Chancellor of the Kerala University for Health and Allied Sciences K. Mohandas has said the university will set up a centre for interdisciplinary studies within two years.

He was addressing a meeting here on Saturday to inaugurate a yoga training course for journalists conducted by the Thrissur Press Club and the Thrissur District Yoga Association. The session focussed on stress management through yoga.

“The centre will carry out research on alternative systems of medicine and try to evolve disease management protocols. The objective of the university is not only to streamline the medical courses examinations but also to promote health and medicine-related research. The State’s achievements in the health sector are noteworthy, but its performance in the area of medical research leaves much to be desired,” he said.

He observed that yoga, an integral part of the Indian systems of healing, was said to be effective in prevention and management of diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. “But scientific evaluation and validation of the effects of yoga are needed.”

He noted that yoga beneficially affects the autonomic nervous system (ANS). The ANS (or visceral nervous system) acts as a control system functioning independent of consciousness and controls visceral functions. The ANS affects the heart rate, digestion and other functions.

Joy Mannur, president, Thrissur Press Club; K. Parameswaran, secretary; T. S. Balaram, Yoga Association president; K. K. Chandran, secretary; and Gopinath Edakkunni, vice-president and course director; spoke. A demonstration of Yoga asanas by Balakrishnan Pallath, Aparna Krishnakumar, Ajith K. Menon and K. C. Saneesh was conducted.

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