Yoga and diet changes can help young cancer patients manage their disease today and lay the foundation for a healthy future, say researchers.
Departments of Clinical Nutrition and Rehabilitation Services have created a program at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital that focuses on all of the benefits of yoga, which include balance, coordination, a decrease in pain and improving quality of life.
Jessica Sparrow, an occupational therapist trained in providing yoga for children, at the rehabilitation services said that having this special combination of yoga and nutrition as a service provided for patients is a true complement to treatment.
Sparrow worked with Danielle Doria, also of Rehabilitation Services, and Karen Smith of Clinical Nutrition to create the program's outline. After each yoga session, patients get a lesson on healthy eating, which often includes a hands-on demonstration from a St. Jude chef.
The combination program has been successful, with many of the patients using basic poses at home or even in the hospital's hallways.