One of my life goals is to help people, including myself, avoid the clutches of this dreadful disease that affects one in three seniors in San Antonio. It’s heartbreaking that more and more children are diagnosed with “adult-onset diabetes.”
Plus, even those that have their blood sugar levels under control are automatically at risk for other diseases. Heart disease. Alzheimer’s. Coronavirus complications.
Blood sugar management is one of my top priorities as a yoga therapist. That’s why I first introduced my Yoga Therapy workshops for diabetics and pre-diabetics at the D.R. Semmes YMCA about six years ago. The six-week series went far beyond hatha yoga to include elements of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda.
Therapeutic Blood Sugar Workshops
To reiterate, THE SUGAR DROP is my own signature series of therapeutic yoga. It’s appropriate for anyone pre-diagnosed with high blood sugar, including pre-diabetics, formerly known as borderline diabetes. THE SUGAR DROP incorporates bodywork, meditation, breathing exercises, and easy-to-incorporate lifestyle changes essential for the treatment of blood sugar imbalances.
Participants can choose between in-person or virtual sessions. Individual or small group. In English, or in Spanish. The goal is to help people make subtle changes in their lifestyle to bring about positive results in their physical and emotional well-being.
While Western medicine relies on oral meds, or insulin, to “manage” blood sugar levels, holistic approaches, including those I use in THE SUGAR DROP, go to the root of the dis-ease (see my last two blogs for more on this). And, my upcoming book features an entire chapter on this concept. My information and anecdotes are based on the learnings of my first Ayurvedic doctor in India.
“If you only address physicality, you won’t reach the cause,” said Chase Bossart, co-director of Yoga as Therapy North America (YATNA). “Yoga Therapists can train people to alter their lifestyles to help them with specific issues, and at the same time, help them to have a healthier mind/body/soul for longer term.”
Gary Kraftsow, a yoga therapist who studied with one of the foremost yogis in India agrees it’s about lifestyle. “The basic principle of yoga cikitsa (therapy) is that diseases are symptoms of imbalance; and therefore, the orientation of yoga cikitsa is to restore balance.”
Data Proves Reversing Diabetes is Possible
Clinical studies have proven that the multiple branches of yoga provide physical benefits for people with a wide range of health needs. Y:
Finally, research has also proven that yogis have better-balanced diets, and a five percent loss in body weight can reduce blood sugar levels. The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle conducted a study of 1500 overweight individuals, over the age of 50. Those who dedicated time at least once a week to yoga (regardless of the type of yoga) over a period of four years or more, were nearly 20 pounds lighter than those who did not practice yoga. The researcher’s theory was that the yogis had less stress and better diets than the others in the study. Most likely because the practice of yoga generally brings about a more positive and healthy lifestyle.
Therapeutic yoga for diabetes is complementary support, not an alternative to other essential treatment plans, and participants should have recent A1C readings. No prior yoga experience is necessary. For more information on yoga for diabetics, visit my YouTube channel, and read https://thenamastecounsel.com/yoga-diabetics/. Contact me for more information, or to enroll.