Surviving breast cancer is a huge feat, but the recovery phase that comes afterward also comes with its own challenges. About one-third of cancer survivors still have to deal with unwelcome bouts of fatigue even after getting through the worst of their condition. There is no accurate explanation for the negative side effect, but a new study proposes that there may be a way to keep the worst bursts at bay. According to researchers, doing yoga can help reduce fatigue and increase vigor in breast cancer survivors.

To test their theory, they gathered 31 cancer survivors who reported similar levels of fatigue and randomly assigned them to two different classes. Some were asked to participate in a 90-minute yoga class twice a week, while the others were made to join a two-hour health class once a week. The study ran for 12 weeks, after which the researchers interviewed them again.

Based on the results, the researchers concluded that yoga does seem to have a significant impact on the well-being of cancer survivor patients. Those who took the yoga class claimed that they felt a 26-percent decrease in fatigue and a 55-percent increase in energy, whereas the subjects who simply took a health class couldn’t report any real changes. In fact, those who took yoga felt continuous improvements even three months after the study.

While there is still no concrete evidence that says yoga is purely responsible for the drop in fatigue, the study has opened up more avenues for researchers to explore. It is possible that other forms of exercise could have the same effect on cancer survivors too.

If you're interested in taking up yoga, you can check out these articles to learn more about it:

For more studies and information about breast cancer, try these:

(Photo by lululemonathletica via Flickr Creative Commons)

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