Monday, December 29, 2008

Indian Health Minister Pushes Yoga in the Classroom: Good Workplace Model?

The Indian Government is proposing mandatory yoga instruction at all of the country's primary schools according to the Indian news blog, Good Read. Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss noted that yoga has been proven to reduce diabetes, hypertension, and stress.
Adult-onset diabetes has been linked to risk factors like ageing, an inactive lifestyle, unhealthy diets, smoking, alcohol and obesity.

The silent chronic disease damages the heart, blood vessels, eyes, kidneys and nerves and was responsible for 3.8 million deaths worldwide in 2007.

India carries the highest diabetes burden in the world, with 41 million cases in 2007 and that is estimated to hit 70 million by 2025, according to the International Diabetes Federation. (source: Good Read)
Since hypertension and adult-onset diabetes can also be linked to occupational factors, I think the Health Ministry or Labor Ministry should make a similar push for yoga in the Indian workplace. Perhaps not as a national mandate, but certainly the government could work to provide incentives to companies to develop yoga-focused preventative health programs at their facilities.

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