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Beat the cold & flu this winter: Regular exercise, meditation can help

People are more vulnerable to cold and flu during winter.

Jan 07, 2019, 05.52 PM IST
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Winter health
MADISON: Searching for ways to avoid getting sick this winter? Regular exercises and meditation may help ward off cold and flu, a study says.

The study published in the journal PLoS One included 390 adults who were divided into three groups. The first group undertook meditation classes for eight weeks, while the second took exercise classes for eight weeks. The third group took neither of the classes. However, all the groups had to receive flu shots.

According to, the maximum numbers of cold and flu incidents were recorded in the third group, where the members had to miss 105 working days due to 134 respiratory infection episodes.

Meanwhile, the meditation group had 112 respiratory infection episodes, for which they missed 73 days of work and the exercise group had 120 episodes and missed 82 days of work.

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However, exercises and meditation enabled the meditation group to cope up with the cold and flu situation by 17 per cent, while the exercise-only group could cope up by 15 per cent.

Speaking about the study, researcher Bruce Barrett said, “More research into the benefits of exercise and meditation is warranted, maybe in higher-risk or sicker populations, where there are more health benefits to gain."

He further added, “Until that research is done, we feel justified in advocating for both mindfulness and exercise because benefits appear likely, and there are minimal risks,” Barrett added.
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