Smoking Jean Hall by KarenYeomans.com


About

Yoga, meditation and mindfulness may help you quit smoking in a number of ways.

Creating a new, healthy habit, which stretches out tense muscles, oxygenates the blood, and calms a stressed nervous system, can be a way of relaxing without reaching for pack of twenty.

Focusing the mind, bringing it back to the present, can help you put cravings in their place, potentially enabling you to transcend the immediacy of their pull and tug.

Experiencing the pleasure of slow, deep breathing may help you experience the lungs as healthy and a source of life and vitality.

Clinical studies have suggested these practices to be effective strategies to quit smoking; they help reduce cravings, help increase long-term abstinence and can improve feelings of health and wellbeing.


What the clinical studies say

Yoga
  • Improves feelings of health and wellbeing
  • Maintains abstinence over time
  • Reduces anxiety
  • Reduces cigarette use
  • Reduces cravings
Meditation
  • Reduces cigarette use
Mindfulness
  • Maintains abstinence over time
  • Reduces cigarette use

The clinical studies

Mindfulness training for smoking cessation: results from a randomized control trial
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

Background:

Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the world, and long-term abstinence rates remain modest. Mindfulness training (MT) has begun to show benefits in a number of psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety and more recently, in addictions. However, MT has not been evaluated for smoking cessation through randomized clinical trials.

Methods:

88 treatment-seeking, nicotine-dependent adults who were smoking an average of 20 cigarettes/day were randomly assigned to receive MT or the American Lung Association's freedom from smoking (FFS) treatment. Both treatments were delivered twice weekly over 4 weeks (eight sessions total) in a group format. The primary outcomes were expired-air carbon monoxide-confirmed 7-day point prevalence abstinence and number of cigarettes/day at the end of the 4-week treatment and at a follow-up interview at week 17.

Results:

88% of individuals received MT and 84% of individuals received FFS completed treatment. Compared to those randomized to the FFS intervention, individuals who received MT showed a greater rate of reduction in cigarette use during treatment and maintained these gains during follow-up (F = 11.11, p = .001). They also exhibited a trend toward greater point prevalence abstinence rate at the end of treatment (36% vs. 15%, p = .063), which was significant at the 17-week follow-up (31% vs. 6%, p = .012).

Conclusions:

This initial trial of mindfulness training may confer benefits greater than those associated with current standard treatments for smoking cessation.
Citations

72
Authors

Judson A. Brewer | | Sarah Mallik | Theresa A. Babuscio | Charla Nich | Hayley E. Johnson | Cameron M. Deleone | Candace A. Minnix-Cotton | Shannon A. Byrne | Hedy Kober | Andrea J. Weinstein | Kathleen M. Carroll | Bruce J. Rounsaville
Published

2011
Journal

Drug and Alcohol Dependence
Volume / Issue

119:2
Author's primary institution

Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06510, USA
Yoga as a Complementary Treatment for Smoking Cessation in Women
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

Background:

Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the world, and long-term abstinence rates remain modest. Mindfulness training (MT) has begun to show benefits in a number of psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety and more recently, in addictions. However, MT has not been evaluated for smoking cessation through randomized clinical trials.

Methods:

88 treatment-seeking, nicotine-dependent adults who were smoking an average of 20 cigarettes/day were randomly assigned to receive MT or the American Lung Association's freedom from smoking (FFS) treatment. Both treatments were delivered twice weekly over 4 weeks (eight sessions total) in a group format. The primary outcomes were expired-air carbon monoxide-confirmed 7-day point prevalence abstinence and number of cigarettes/day at the end of the 4-week treatment and at a follow-up interview at week 17.

Results:

88% of individuals received MT and 84% of individuals received FFS completed treatment. Compared to those randomized to the FFS intervention, individuals who received MT showed a greater rate of reduction in cigarette use during treatment and maintained these gains during follow-up (F = 11.11, p = .001). They also exhibited a trend toward greater point prevalence abstinence rate at the end of treatment (36% vs. 15%, p = .063), which was significant at the 17-week follow-up (31% vs. 6%, p = .012).

Conclusions:

This initial trial of mindfulness training may confer benefits greater than those associated with current standard treatments for smoking cessation.
Citations

21
Authors

Beth C. Bock | Joseph L. Fava | Ronnesia Gaskins | Kathleen M. Morrow | David M. Williams | Ernestine Jennings | Bruce M. Becker | Geoffrey Tremont | Bess H. Marcus
Published

2012
Journal

Centers for Behavioural and Preventive Medicine, The Miriam Hospital, Providence, Rhode Island
Volume / Issue

21:2
Author's primary institution

Centers for Behavioral and Preventive Medicine, The Miriam Hospital, Providence, Rhode Island
Meditation-induced changes in high-frequency heart rate variability predict smoking outcomes
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

Background:

High-frequency heart rate variability (HF-HRV) is a measure of parasympathetic nervous system (PNS) output that has been associated with enhanced self-regulation. Low resting levels of HF-HRV are associated with nicotine dependence and blunted stress-related changes in HF-HRV are associated with decreased ability to resist smoking. Meditation has been shown to increase HF-HRV. However, it is unknown whether tonic levels of HF-HRV or acute changes in HF-HRV during meditation predict treatment responses in addictive behaviors such as smoking cessation.

Purpose:

To investigate the relationship between HF-HRV and subsequent smoking outcomes. 

Methods:

HF-HRV during resting baseline and during mindfulness meditation was measured within two weeks of completing a 4-week smoking cessation intervention in a sample of 31 community participants. Self-report measures of smoking were obtained at a follow up 17-weeks after the initiation of treatment. 

Results:

Regression analyses indicated that individuals exhibiting acute increases in HF-HRV from resting baseline to meditation smoked fewer cigarettes at follow-up than those who exhibited acute decreases in HF-HRV (b = −4.89, p = 0.008). 

Conclusion:

Acute changes in HF-HRV in response to meditation may be a useful tool to predict smoking cessation treatment response.
Citations

13
Authors

Daniel J. Libby | Patrick D. Worhunsky | Corey E. Pilver | Judson A. Brewer
Published

2012
Journal

Frontiers in Human Neuroscience
Volume / Issue

6:54
Author's primary institution

Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA
Acute Effects of Aerobic Exercise and Hatha Yoga on Craving to Smoke
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

Introduction:

Recent studies have examined the effects of physical activity on craving to smoke and smoking withdrawal. The current study was designed to compare and contrast the effects of 2 different forms of physical activity on general and cue-elicited craving to smoke.

Methods:

Following 1-hr nicotine abstinence, 76 daily smokers were randomly assigned to engage in a 30-min bout of cardiovascular exercise (CE; brisk walk on a treadmill), Hatha yoga (HY), or a nonactivity control condition. Participants completed measures of craving and mood, and a smoking cue reactivity assessment, before, immediately following, and approximately 20 min after the physical activity or control conditions.

Results:

Compared with the control condition, participants in each of the physical activity groups reported a decrease in craving to smoke, an increase in positive affect, and a decrease in negative affect. In addition, craving in response to smoking cues was specifically reduced among those who engaged in CE, whereas those who engaged in HY reported a general decrease in cravings.

Conclusions:

This study provides further support for the use of exercise bouts for attenuating cigarette cravings during temporary nicotine abstinence. Results also suggest that CE can attenuate cravings in response to smoking cues. There are several areas for further research that may improve integration of exercise within smoking cessation treatment.
Citations

30
Authors

Andrea Elibero | Kate Janse Van Rensburg | David J. Drobes
Published

2011
Journal

Nicotine and Tobacco Research
Volume / Issue

17:2
Author's primary institution

Tobacco Research and Intervention Program, Moffitt Cancer Center, 4115 E. Fowler Ave. Tampa, Florida, USA
A narrative review of yoga and mindfulness as complementary therapies for addiction
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

This paper reviews the philosophical origins, current scientific evidence, and clinical promise of yoga and mindfulness as complementary therapies for addiction.

Historically, there are eight elements of yoga that, together, comprise ethical principles and practices for living a meaningful, purposeful, moral and self-disciplined life. Traditional yoga practices, including postures and meditation, direct attention toward one's health, while acknowledging the spiritual aspects of one's nature.

Mindfulness derives from ancient Buddhist philosophy, and mindfulness meditation practices, such as gentle Hatha yoga and mindful breathing, are increasingly integrated into secular health care settings. Current theoretical models suggest that the skills, insights, and self-awareness learned through yoga and mindfulness practice can target multiple psychological, neural, physiological, and behavioral processes implicated in addiction and relapse.

A small but growing number of well-designed clinical trials and experimental laboratory studies on smoking, alcohol dependence, and illicit substance use support the clinical effectiveness and hypothesized mechanisms of action underlying mindfulness-based interventions for treating addiction. Because very few studies have been conducted on the specific role of yoga in treating or preventing addiction, we propose a conceptual model to inform future studies on outcomes and possible mechanisms.

Additional research is also needed to better understand what types of yoga and mindfulness-based interventions work best for what types of addiction, what types of patients, and under what conditions. Overall, current findings increasingly support yoga and mindfulness as promising complementary therapies for treating and preventing addictive behaviors.
Citations

13
Authors

Surbhi Khanna | Jeffrey M. Greeson
Published

2013
Journal

Complementary Therapies in Medicine
Volume / Issue

21:3
Author's primary institution

Kasturba Medical College, Manipal University, Manipal, Karnataka, India
Yoga for addictions: a systematic review of randomised clinical trials
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

Background:

It has been suggested that yoga may be effective in the management of mental health disorders including addictions.

Objective:

To critically evaluate the evidence of effectiveness of yoga as a treatment for addictions.

Methods:

Fourteen electronic databases were searched from inception to January 2013. Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that evaluated any type of yoga against any type of control in individuals with any type of addiction were eligible. Methodological quality was appraised using Cochrane criteria.

Results:

Eight RCTs met the eligibility criteria. Most of these RCTs were small with serious methodological flaws. The types of addictions included in these studies were alcohol, drug and nicotine addiction. Seven RCTs suggested that various types of yoga, including hatha yoga (HY), Iyengar yoga, nidra yoga, pranayama or cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) plus vinyasa yoga, led to significantly more favourable results for addictions compared to various control interventions. One RCT indicated that a methadone maintenance programme (MMP) plus HY had no effect on drug use and criminal activities compared with MMP plus psychotherapy.

Conclusions:

Although the results of this review are encouraging, large RCTs are needed to better determine the benefits of yoga for addiction.
Citations

1
Authors

Paul Posadzki | Jiae Choi | Myeong Soo Lee | Edzard Ernst
Published

2014
Journal

Focus on Alternative and Complementary Therapies
Volume / Issue

19:1
Author's primary institution

Medical Research Division, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Daejeon, South Korea
Mind–body practices: An alternative, drug-free treatment for smoking cessation? A systematic review of the literature
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

Objective:

The limited success of current smoking cessation therapies encourages research into new treatment strategies. Mind–body practices such as yoga and meditation have the potential to aid smoking cessation and become an alternative drug-free treatment option. The aim of this article is to assess the efficacy of yoga and other meditation-based interventions for smoking cessation, to identify the challenges of clinical trials applying mind–body treatments, and to outline directions for future research on these types of therapies to assist in smoking cessation.

Methods:

A systematic review of the scientific literature.

Results:

Fourteen clinical trials met the inclusion criteria defined for this review. Each article was reviewed thoroughly, and evaluated for quality, design, and methodology. Although primary outcomes differed between studies, the fourteen articles, most with limitations, reported promising effects supporting further investigation of the use of these practices to improve smoking cessation.

Conclusions:

The literature supports yoga and meditation-based therapies as candidates to assist smoking cessation. However, the small number of studies available and associated methodological problems require more clinical trials with larger sample sizes and carefully monitored interventions to determine rigorously if yoga and meditation are effective treatments.
Citations

19
Authors

Laura Carim-Todd | Suzanne H. Mitchell | Barry S. Oken
Published

2013
Journal

Drug and Alcohol Dependence
Volume / Issue

132:3
Author's primary institution

Department of Neurology, Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), Portland, OR, USA
Effect of rhythmic breathing (Sudarshan Kriya and Pranayam) on immune functions and tobacco addiction.
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

Stress, a psychophysiological process, acts through the immune-neuroendocrine axis and affects cellular processes of body and immune functions, leading to disease states including cancer. Stress is also linked to the habit of tobacco consumption and substance abuse, which in turn also leads to diseases. Sudarshan Kriya (SK) and Pranayam (P), rhythmic breathing processes, are known to reduce stress and improve immune functions.

Cancer patients who had completed their standard therapy were studied.

SK and P increased natural killer (NK) cells significantly (P <0.001) at 12 and 24 weeks of the practice compared to baseline. Increase in NK cells at 24 weeks was significant (P<0.05) compared to controls. There was no effect on T-cell subsets after SK and P either in the study group or among controls. SK and P helped to control the tobacco habit in 21% of individuals who were followed up to 6 months of practice.

We conclude that the inexpensive and easy to learn and practice breathing processes (SK and P) in this study demonstrated an increase in NK cells and a reduction in tobacco consumption. When confirmed in large and randomized studies, this result could mean that the regular practice of SK and P might reduce the incidence and progression of cancer.
Citations

34
Authors

V Kochupillai | P Kumar | D Singh | D Aggarwal | N Bhardwaj | M Bhutani | S N Das
Published

2005
Journal

Annals of The New York Academy of Sciences
Volume / Issue

1056
Author's primary institution

Department of Medical Oncology, Institute Rotary Cancer Hospital, New Delhi, India
Between Inhale and Exhale: Yoga as an Intervention in Smoking Cessation
Practice
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
Abstract

The current study provided a review of evidence-based yoga interventions’ impact on smoking cessation. The researchers reviewed articles obtained from MEDLINE (PubMed), EBSCOHOST, PROQUEST, MEDINDIA, CINAHL, Alt HealthWatch, and AMED databases. Inclusion criteria were as follows: (a) study published between 2004 and 2013, (b) study published in English language, (c) study used yoga-based interventions, (d) study involved smokers with varying level of smoking, (e) study used any quantitative design, and (f) study had physiological and/or psychological outcomes. A total of 10 studies met the inclusion criteria. Designs were 2 pre–post tests and 8 randomized controlled trials. Majority of the interventions were able to enhance quitting smoking rates in the participants under study. Yoga-based interventions hold promise for smoking cessation. Some of the limitations include short follow-up measurements and short duration of intervention.
Citations

1
Authors

Chia-Liang Dai | Manoj Sharma
Published

2014
Journal

Evidenced based complementary and alternative medicine
Volume / Issue

19:2
Author's primary institution

University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA

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