Date of Award


Degree Type

Selective Evidence-Based Medicine Review

Department Chair

John Cavenagh, PhD, PA-C


OBJECTIVE: The objective of this selective EBM review is to determine whether yoga is an effective management strategy for disordered eating.

STUDY DESIGN: Review of three English language primary studies published in 2007, 2009, and 2010.

DATA SOURCES: Three randomized control trials that evaluated yoga as a treatment intervention for disordered eating found using Medline@OVID and PubMed.

OUTCOME MEASURED: Outcomes were interpreted by eating disorder severity as measured on the Eating Disorder Examination, Eating Disorder Diagnostic Scale, and Binge Eating Scale. Secondarily, there was an assessment of associated attitudes and behaviors towards eating, including body satisfaction, physical activity level, food preoccupation, anxiety and depression as measured, respectively, by the Body Dissatisfaction Scale, International Physical Activity Questionnaires, Food Preoccupation Questionnaire, State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, and Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale.

RESULTS: Two of the three published studies included in this review provide evidence to suggest that the intervention of yoga can lessen disordered eating severity and associated comorbidities. While one of the studies did not show a treatment effect, there were no adverse events reported in any of the three studies.

CONCLUSIONS: The results of this review demonstrate that there is evidence to suggest that the practice of yoga can lessen eating disorder severity and its associated comorbidities. While there is not evidence to suggest that yoga is an effective primary treatment modality, its use as adjunctive therapy for disordered eating is promising and warrants further investigation.