What is qigong? Qigong originated in China about 4,000 years ago.
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Qigong uses simple poses and breathing patterns to promote a healthy flow and reduce stagnation of qi. Proper flow of qi can help the body engage its own healing processes. The literal translation of qigong is “to work with qi.” Reduces depression and relieves stress One study found that qigong could reduce symptoms of depression. In this study, those who practiced qigong also experienced less anxiety and better moods as compared to those who didn’t. Qigong was also shown to have positive effects on bone and cardiovascular health and improve balance. Lessens chronic fatigue Chronic fatigue syndrome is a common disorder that causes extreme tiredness. There is no known cause, and it doesn’t go away with rest. It can be difficult — or nearly impossible — for someone with chronic fatigue to function in their daily life. Boosts the immune response Your immune system’s job is to fend off unwanted guests like viruses, bacteria and diseases. That’s an important responsibility. And qigong may give your immune system a little extra help. A review of several studies found that qigong had a noticeable impact on immune functioning. It increased levels of certain immune cells in people who practiced it regularly. Improves well-being in people with cancer Many people who are undergoing cancer treatment need relief from side effects and the stress of treatment. Often, they turn to alternative medicine practices like acupuncture, yoga or massage. Qigong may have a place on this list, too. Some evidence suggests that using qigong can help patients with cancer fight fatigue and mood disturbances. This boost may be a welcome relief.
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