Pranayama or breathing exercises of Yoga have been found to beneficial to human health. I looked at these questions while doing research for my books on Natural solutions for cancer and Natural Solutions for Diabetes. Let me present to some of that analysis with reference to cancer and diabetes.
Nine studies conducted on cancer patients and survivors showed modest improvements in sleep quality, mood, stress, cancer-related distress, cancer-related symptoms, and overall quality of life (Bower et al., 2005). Breast cancer patients who practiced yoga showed some positive results (Smith et al., 2009, and Mustian, et al., 2010).
Yoga practices by cancer survivors 65 years and older helped reduce cancer-related physical and mental fatigue and reduced side effects (Sprod et al., 2015). A 7-week yoga program by breast cancer survivors showed improved quality of life and physical parameters (Culos-Reed et al., 2004). The beneficial effects of yoga were observed in patients who had not been exposed to chemotherapy (Moadel et al., 2007).
Yoga is now mainstreamed in many cancer specialist hospitals in many parts of the world.
Similar studies have been conducted for diabetes control and management.
Diabetic individuals who performed pranayama felt a sense of well-being in 7 to 10 days of practice. Demand for insulin, other diabetes control medicine dropped. In this trial, four types of pranayama were practiced for 30 minutes, followed by 10 minutes of resting yoga posture called Shavasana (a dead person pose posture). (Sahay, B.K., 2007)