Qi Gong Helps Weight Loss For Diabetics – Research

Qi Gong helps diabetics lose weight. New research conducted at the Bastyr University Research Institute (Kenmore, Washington) concludes that Qi Gong “has a positive impact on body weight in people with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM).”

lesageMeasurements of body weight, body mass index (BMI), insulin resistance and fasting glucose confirm that medical Qi Gong exercises benefit patients with diabetes.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) includes several methods for the purposes of improving health including herbal medicine, acupuncture, Tui-Na massage, Qi Gong and Tai Chi (Taijichuan). Qi Gong is the art of movement exercises combined with breathing control. In this most recent study, the style of Yi Ren medical Qi Gong was used. Participants practiced in a group setting for 60 minutes per week with instructors and practiced at home at a rate of twice per week for 30 minutes per session.

The study team notes a very interesting phenomena. Qi Gong reduced the BMI (body mass index) for patients with high BMIs and raised the BMI for patients with abnormally low BMIs. This suggests a natural homeostatic response to Qi Gong in human subjects. Beneficial effects on weight loss for overweight subjects were measured and decreases in insulin resistance were significant. As a results, the researchers conclude that medical Qi Gong provides important benefits for weight loss, BMI control and improvements in insulin resistance.

Below is an image from a scroll dating back to the Han Dynasty. It depicts several Qi Gong exercises.

This Han Dynasty scroll image depicts Qigong movements and positions.


Sun, G. C., X. Ding, X. H. Zhou, A. Putiri, and R. Bradley. "Effects of Yi Ren Medical Qi Gong on Body Weight in People with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Secondary Analysis of a Randomized Controlled Pilot Study." J Integrative Med Ther 1, no. 1 (2014): 5.
Author Affiliations:
1 Institute of Qi Gong and Integrative Medicine, Bothell, Washington.
2 Bastyr University Research Institute, Kenmore, Washington.
3 University of Washington, Department of Biostatistics, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, and HSR&D VA Pudget Sound Health Care System, Seattle, Washington.
4 Bastyr University Research Institute, San Diego, California.

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