Yoga shows benefits to those battling and recovering from cancer

WSFA/NBC - Peggy Dessaint is a breast cancer survivor and regularly attends specialized therapeutic yoga classes.

"The stretching, the strengthening, the focusing on areas that are giving you particular problems, and it's the way that the mind connects to the body, and that is an integral part of healing of wellness," said Dessaint. "We call it the Yoga Prozac!"

The classes double as both exercise and a support group.

Dessaint goes on to say it's, "a critical part of all that is the mind, the body connection, and stress management. When you're diagnosed and the years following that, it's the concern, the worry that it's going to come back, and here we have all the support."

CEO of Jewish Family and Children's Services Heidi Brown says they hope to expand classes and services.

"There is a real need in the community to offer holistic health care services to people who have had a cancer diagnosis, whether, in treatment, it's a new diagnosis, or are a survivor of cancer," said Brown.

They have hired a lot of surgeons, and already launched a lot of services but they know that exercise and supportive services is key to the recovery of our oncology patients.

Dessaint says the program would have made a world of difference to her if it was available when she was diagnosed.

"Just to have the structure, to have the support, the socialization, to be with other people who are experiencing things that you are," Dessiant said.

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