Yoga And Meditation Are On The Rise Among Both Adults And Kids

Family & Parenting

It can benefit people with certain medical issues. Have you ever tried yoga or meditation?

More Americans are turning to forms of complementary medicine such as yoga, meditation and chiropractors, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, part of the National Institutes of Health, says in reports released Nov. 8 that more than 30 percent of US adults and about 12 percent of children use “healthcare approaches that are not typically part of conventional medical care or that may have origins outside of usual Western practices.”

Complementary medicine is when these practices are used alongside conventional medicine.

“Many people turn to complementary health approaches, such as yoga and meditation, in order to help with symptom management, such as pain. As well, they turn to these approaches for a general sense of wellbeing,” Richard Nahin, the lead epidemiologist at the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health and co-author of the reports, wrote in an email.

The reports, which were compiled using data from the National Center for Health Statistics’ National Health Interview Survey, looked at the use of yoga, meditation and chiropractors between 2012 and 2017.

yoga photo
Getty Images | Joe Raedle

The practice of yoga rose from 3.1 percent of the overall child population in 2012 to 8.4 percent in 2017 and from 9.5 to 14.3 percent in adults, equating to about 4.9 million children and 35.2 million adults doing yoga in 2017.

Meditation use went up from 0.6 percent of children in 2012 to 5.4 percent in 2017 and from 4.1 percent of adults in 2012 to 14.2 percent of adults in 2017.

The use of chiropractors in children stayed essentially the same — about 3.5 percent of children visited chiropractors in both years. There was a small difference for adults, from 9.1 percent in 2012 to 10.3 percent in 2017.

Who’s Turning To Yoga And Meditation?

More females are doing yoga in both age groups in 2017: 11.3 percent of girls, compared with 5.6 percent of boys, and 19.8 percent of women, compared with 8.6 percent of men.

Meditation and chiropractors were more popular with adult women surveyed, but in children, the rates of use between boys and girls were similar.

Among children, those between 12 and 17, were the most likely to either meditate or visit a chiropractor.


For adults, yoga was found to be most popular with 18- to 44-year-olds, and meditation and chiropractors were used most by those in the 45-to-64 age group.

Racially, white non-Hispanics were the most likely to use all three methods in both age groups.

Though the patterns of use were the same as in previous years for children, according to the report, there were changes in adult usage.

“The popularity of meditation surpassed that of seeing a chiropractor to become the second most-used approach among those examined in 2017,” the report said.

The Benefits Of Yoga And Meditation

All three methods of complementary medicine appear to have health benefits, Nahin said. Yoga may improve general well-being, and evidence is increasing that it helps with some aspects of wellness, including mental health and stress management. It can also helps relieve lower back and neck pain.

He also noted that research suggests that meditation can help with medical problems, including symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, and that the spinal manipulation of chiropractic research could help low back pain as well as problems such as whiplash-associated disorders.

Written by Naomi Thomas for CNN.

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For Weight Loss, Is It Better To Work Out In The Morning Or Night? Science Has Some Answers

This is interesting. Do you work out in the mornings or at night?

Rush hour at the gym is 5 to 7 p.m., with the majority of people working out during this time, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In fact, only 31 percent of people are morning exercisers, logging their sweat sessions before noon.

Aside from avoiding crowds, though, you may have wondered if there’s a best time to work out. Can you supercharge your weight loss more in the morning or at night?

Some small studies suggest there might be a slight weight-loss advantage when working out in the morning, especially if you hit the gym before you eat breakfast. The other advantages of morning workouts, according to the research, is lower blood pressure and better sleep.

But personal trainers and registered dietitians are mostly in agreement here: Just go to the gym, and don’t sweat the small stuff, like time of day. Afterall, only one in five Americans are getting enough aerobic and strength training exercise every week, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Here’s what weight-loss experts and research have to say about syncing your weight-loss goals with your workout schedule.


Get To The Gym When You Can

If you can pop out of bed at 6 a.m. and get to the gym for an hour before work, great. If you don’t get to the gym until after dinner time, though, that’s also great, the experts say.

“I always tell my patients the best time to exercise is the time they will actually go,” says Keri Gans, a registered dietitian, certified yoga teacher and author of “The Small Change Diet.” “It’s as simple as that.”

To really get this right, you can pencil in your workout class or session like you would any other important appointment on your calendar. Of course, one argument for working out in the morning is that it’s more likely things will come up later in the day that can derail your schedule.

Frank Benedetto, a certified strength and conditioning specialist trainer, says exercising in the morning instead of the evening will not trigger the body to burn more calories or fat in a significant way.

“The only reason to choose a morning workout versus a night workout, in my opinion, is if you subjectively feel better exercising in the morning or night,” says Benedetto, the co-founder and CEO of ProVere Health.


Small Studies Show Advantages Of Working Out Before Breakfast

You already know a couple of the advantages of working out in the morning: The lap lanes in the pool are more open, or you don’t have to wait in line for a popular piece of equipment because fewer people are at the gym. Plus, chugging from your water bottle while working out in the evening can mean waking up to go to the bathroom throughout the night.

But, as it turns out, a lot of research falls on the side of earlier workouts, suggesting morning exercisers are reaping some more benefits.

Working out in the morning on an empty stomach can burn up to 20 percent more body fat, according to a 2013 study involving 12 men that was published in the British Journal of Nutrition. The researchers explained that exercise increases the total amount of energy we expend, and a greater proportion of this energy comes from existing fat if the exercise is performed after an overnight fast — in other words, on an empty stomach before breakfast. Also, the researchers concluded that working out in the morning doesn’t increase your appetite, hunger or food consumption later in the day.


In another small study, involving 10 men, researchers in Japan found that fat oxidation happens when you work out before breakfast. Fat oxidation is great for weight loss because it’s what breaks down free fatty acids in the blood as well as the triglycerides stored in fat cells — a process that can lead to not just weight loss but also can help prevent type 2 diabetes.

But Robert Herbst — a personal trainer, weight loss and wellness coach and powerlifter — says you’re overthinking it if you exercise in the morning to take advantage of being in a fasting state.

What really matters, he says, is including high-intensity interval training, or HIIT, in your workout regimen. HIIT workouts alternate intense bursts of heart-pumping exercise with short rest periods, ultimately helping you burn more calories.


In fact, for those who want to do a rigorous strength workout with heavy lifting, Herbst says it makes more sense to go later in the day, when your core temperature is higher and connective tissues and muscles are warmed up.

“What I tell people is that any time they can exercise is the best time, because you don’t want them to have an excuse,” he says.

So, do you prefer to work out in the morning or evening?

We were not paid to write this story. The products and services mentioned below were selected independent of sales and advertising. However, Simplemost may receive a small commission from the purchase of any products or services through an affiliate link to the retailer’s website.

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