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J Altern Complement Med. 1999 Aug;5(4):353-8.

Effects of qigong walking on diabetic patients: a pilot study.

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International Association of Relaxation Therapy, Kyoto, Japan.



The present study was designed to evaluate the advantages of qigong walking, a mild and slow exercise that uses all the muscles of the body, in comparison with conventional walking in patients with diabetes.


Ten inpatients with diabetes mellitus and associated complications were studied on 3 different days. Either qigong walking (30-40-minute duration) or conventional walking was performed by the patients 30 minutes after lunch on 1 of the 3 study days. Plasma glucose levels and pulse rates were measured 30 minutes after lunch and again 20 minutes after exercising; that is, 90 minutes after lunch. These data were compared to those obtained on a day with no exercise after lunch.


Plasma glucose levels decreased during both exercises (from 228 mg/dL before to 205 mg/dL after conventional walking) and (from 223 mg/dL before to 216 mg/dL after qigong walking). In both situations the results after exercise decreased more than those in the group with no exercise (229 mg/dL; p < 0.025). The pulse rates increased after conventional walking (from 77 to 95 beats per minute; p < 0.025) and were higher than those in the group with no exercise (70 beats per minute; p < 0.01) and those after qigong walking (79 beats per minute; p < 0.05).


Qigong walking reduced plasma glucose after lunch without inducing a large increase in the pulse rate in patients with diabetes.

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