Report: Yoga, meditation can reduce healthcare costs by 43%

Published: Jan. 17, 2016 at 7:28 PM MST
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A Harvard study found that simple practices like stretching and contemplating about life can change the way we live and the health care system, too.

The study reports that more than 90 percent of people suffering from stress-related problems seek help from doctors.

Health care expenses from stress-related disorders were more than $80 billion a year, making it the third highest health care expense right behind heart disease and cancer.

Harvard researchers found that mind-body practices like yoga and meditation helps reduce stress.

“Combining that mind-body connection helps to induce that relaxation response,” said Maegan Dykstra, a yoga instructor at Gold’s Gym. “So you’re able to lower your blood pressure, your heart rate, and just sort of come in to a space of quiet center so that you’re able to relax.”

“It really calms down my nervous system, especially after ... going through a stressful situation, such as a divorce, like I have,” said Julie Grubich, who takes Dykstra’s yoga class. “I always thank the instructor at the very end and say thanks for the therapy because it is.”

Harvard researchers studied a mind-body relaxation program and found that participants used less than 43 percent of medical services than they did the previous year.

These individuals saved on average a little more than $2,000 per person in emergency room visits alone.