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Yoga, exercise fail to improve sleep in midlife women, study suggests

Objective sleep outcomes were unchanged in women experiencing hot flashes during the menopausal transition or after menopause

Date:
January 23, 2017
Source:
American Academy of Sleep Medicine
Summary:
Yoga and aerobic exercise interventions did not significantly reduce objectively measured sleep disturbances among midlife women who were experiencing hot flashes, suggests new research.
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A new study indicates that yoga and aerobic exercise interventions did not significantly reduce objectively measured sleep disturbances among midlife women who were experiencing hot flashes.

Secondary analyses of a randomized controlled trial show that neither 12 weeks of yoga nor 12 weeks of aerobic exercise had a statistically significant effect on objective measures of sleep duration or sleep quality recorded by actigraphy. Although the women had no difficulty falling asleep, disturbed sleep was common at baseline and remained after each intervention, with women in all groups waking during the night for an average of more than 50 minutes.

According to the authors, previously published analyses of the same trial had found that the yoga and aerobic exercise interventions were associated with small but statistically significant improvements in subjective, self-reported sleep quality and insomnia severity.

"Our primary findings were that the two study interventions had no significant effects on objective sleep outcomes in midlife women with hot flashes. The main implication of this finding is that other behavior treatments with the potential for effectively improving sleep in this population should be examined," said lead author Diana Taibi Buchanan, associate professor of Bio-Behavioral Nursing and Health Informatics at the University of Washington in Seattle.

Study results are published in the Jan. 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.

The authors analyzed data from the Menopause Strategies: Finding Lasting Answers for Symptoms and Health (MsFLASH) network. The study involved 186 late transition and postmenopausal women with hot flashes who were between 40 and 62 years of age. Study subjects had an average of 7.3 to 8 hot flashes per day. Participants were randomized to 12 weeks of yoga, supervised aerobic exercise, or usual activity.

Sleep measures were evaluated using wrist actigraphy, and bedtimes and rise times were determined primarily from the participants' sleep diaries. Mean sleep duration at baseline and after each intervention was less than the 7 or more hours of nightly sleep that is recommended by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine for optimal health in adults.

According to the authors, future research should explore other approaches for improving sleep quality in midlife women, such as cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia.


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Materials provided by American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. uchanan DT, Landis CA, Hohensee C, Guthrie KA, Otte JL, Paudel M, Anderson GL, Caan B, Freeman EW, Joffe H, LaCroix AZ, Newton KM, Reed SD, Ensrud KE. Effects of yoga and aerobic exercise on actigraphic sleep parameters in menopausal women with hot flashes. Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, 2017;13(1):11%u201318

Cite This Page:

American Academy of Sleep Medicine. "Yoga, exercise fail to improve sleep in midlife women, study suggests: Objective sleep outcomes were unchanged in women experiencing hot flashes during the menopausal transition or after menopause." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 January 2017. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/01/170123162409.htm>.
American Academy of Sleep Medicine. (2017, January 23). Yoga, exercise fail to improve sleep in midlife women, study suggests: Objective sleep outcomes were unchanged in women experiencing hot flashes during the menopausal transition or after menopause. ScienceDaily. Retrieved May 28, 2017 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/01/170123162409.htm
American Academy of Sleep Medicine. "Yoga, exercise fail to improve sleep in midlife women, study suggests: Objective sleep outcomes were unchanged in women experiencing hot flashes during the menopausal transition or after menopause." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/01/170123162409.htm (accessed May 28, 2017).

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