Stretching exercises for seniors can improve muscle mass, flexibility, mobility and range of motion, but does that make them appropriate for yoga enthusiasts of all ages? Sure it does, especially considering the widespread risk of metabolic conditions like diabetes.
Since November is American Diabetes Month, here is a quick summary of the extent of this condition in the U.S., as well as the ways that doctors have suggested using yoga for health problems like diabetes.
More than 26 million children and adults have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, and another 79 million are at risk for the latter variety of the condition, according to the American Diabetes Association.
Much of this prevalence is due to genetic predisposition, poor dietary habits and lack of exercise. What can be done about it? Well, individuals who already have diabetes are essentially stuck with it, but that doesn't mean they can't improve their health with yoga-based interventions.
Likewise, people who don't have the condition but are at risk for it may reduce their likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes by engaging in yoga and meditation. A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that doing yoga for as few as 10 days can lower cholesterol and blood sugar, potentially obviating two common risk factors for diabetes.