A new study conducted by researchers from the University of Sweden say that Yoga can bring about a drastic improvement in the quality of life of patients who suffer from abnormal heart rhythm because it gives them a method of gaining self-control over symptoms and they don’t feel helpless.

The effects of yoga was examined in patients with Paroxysmal Atrial fibrillation in which rapid heart rate and faulty electrical signals begin suddenly and then stop automatically.  This study was published in the European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing.

One researcher from Sophiahemmet University Maria Wahlstrom stated that many patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation cannot live lives the way they want to. They refuse concerts, travelling with friends, dinners just because they are scared of the occurrence of AF.

AF episodes are usually accompanied by dizziness, dyspnoea and chest pain. The symptoms are quite unpleasant, and patients often feel stressed, worried and anxious.

AF is the most common cardiac rhythm disorder and doesn’t have any cure. Patients with this experience episode of AF that usually last for around 48 hours, some extending up to 7 days. The team included 80 patients having paroxysmal AF, who were randomized to yoga or control group which didn’t do yoga.

For one hour, they performed yoga, once a week, for 12 weeks in the hospital with an experienced instructor and included meditation, deep breathing and light movements.

After 12 weeks, the yoga group was seen having ‘SF-36’ mental health scores, lower systolic and diastolic BP and lower heart rate as compared to control group.

Wahlstrom stated that they found patients who did Yoga had a better life, lower BP and lower heart rate as compared to the control group.

Wahlstrom stated that the patients in Yoga group said that they felt good to let go off their thoughts and be inside themselves for sometime.