[Scientific and Holistic Therapy Perspectives on Qigong Practice for Elders With Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors.]

Author: Hung HM, Chen KM.
School of Nursing, Fooyin University, R.O.C. ns148@mail.fy.edu.tw.
Conference/Journal: Hu Li Za Zhi.
Date published: 2009 Feb
Other: Volume ID: 56 , Issue ID: 1 , Pages: 73-78 , Special Notes: [Article in Chinese] , Word Count: 182

The ratio of older adults with chronic illnesses has increased due to increased average life spans. The incidence of cardiovascular diseases among older adults has reached 33.26%, becoming the leading chronic disease and second most significant cause of mortality among older adults. Statistics show that the largest proportion of expenditures on prescription pharmaceuticals in the National Health Insurance goes toward the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. In addition, complications resulting from cardiovascular diseases result in burdens of care that impact seriously on the individual, their family, and society. Studies have supported physical activity as the most important behavior in reducing cardiovascular disease risk factors. Qigong, a traditional Chinese therapeutic activity, uses gentle movements of extremities and control of breathing to improve health, enhance vitality and enable bodies, emotion, and spirit to reach optimal performance. Evidence-based research supports the argument that Qigong improves cardiovascular-respiratory function and lipid profile, decreases blood sugar, and relieves anxiety and depression. We suggest developing a safe, convenient, and simple Qigong exercise regimen for older adults at higher risk of cardiovascular diseases to extend their life expectancy and quality of life.