Modern Science Is Proving Tai Chi’s Benefits

The latest research shows that Tai Chi training is conducive to the treatment of Parkinson’s disease and the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease. Professor Shengdi Chen from the Neurology Department of Ruijin Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine has just published papers in the international authoritative medical journals, Translational Neurodegenerationand Alzheimer’s & Dementia, indicating that long-term Tai Chi training can effectively improve the motor symptom in patients with Parkinson’s disease, and significantly delay cognitive decline in patients with mild cognitive impairment.

In March the research team of Professor Shengdi Chen from the Neurology Department of Ruijin Hospital published their research results about Tai Chi enhances cognitive training effects on delaying cognitive decline in mild cognitive impairment in Alzheimer’s and Dementia journal, which is the most influential and authoritative medical journal in the field of dementia research.

Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is the prodromal stage of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and it is also the best suitable stage for intervention. It is mainly characterized with memory decline. Due to the side effects and other risks in the early use of anti-AD drugs in MCI patient, non-drug interventions such as cognitive training and physical training have attracted attention of global researchers.

Professor Shengdi Chen said, this result suggests that the Tai Chi training can delay the occurrence of Alzheimer’s disease from MCI.

The research team of Professor Shengdi Chen has been deeply engaged in the research of MCI by using non-drug intervention for a long time. With the support of Fosun Foundation and Sino Taiji, Dr. Chen and his research team performed the Tai Chi training in MCI patients for three years. The clinical studies revealed that in the first 12-month, Tai Chi combined with cognitive training and only CT training had benefit than controls. Compared with CT training, Tai Chi combined with cognitive training had additional improved effects. Besides, keeping Tai Chi combined with cognitive training for two years showed delayed decline in global cognition and memory than withdrawing Tai Chi combined with cognitive training. Functional neuroimaging (fMRI) assessment revealed that neural activity was enhanced after training, reflecting the objective effect of Tai Chi training on brain neural activity.