New Study Finds Yoga Decreases Stress, Helps Women Conceive

CHICAGO, Nov. 17, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In one of the largest controlled yoga studies to date, Fertility Centers of Illinois and Pulling Down the Moon analyzed the impact of yoga on anxiety in fertility patients. Using the American Psychological Association's State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, study results found that after a six-week yoga program state anxiety scores reduced by 20 percent in the yoga group vs. 2 percent in the control group, and trait anxiety reduced by 12 percent in the yoga group vs. 3 percent in the control group. Participants completed 45 minutes of vinyasa-style yoga and 30 minutes of group discussion with other infertility patients per week over a period of six weeks. The study was recently presented to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.

Approximately 30 percent of IVF patients suffer from anxiety and depression, with studies showing that an infertility diagnosis causes the same amount of stress, anxiety, and depression as a cancer or HIV diagnosis. Emotional distress is a top reason patients discontinue treatment prior to success.

The study was conducted by Dr. Jennifer Hirshfeld-Cytron of Fertility Centers of Illinois and Beth Heller of Pulling Down the Moon. Study findings show that a substantial decrease in anxiety can quickly occur with the Pulling Down the Moon Yoga for Fertility™ program.

"Patients undergoing infertility treatment experience significant stress from the process, often leading to premature treatment dropout prior to a successful live birth,” explains Dr. Hirshfeld-Cytron. “Our study shows that doing yoga and group conversation geared towards infertility patients once a week for six weeks provided the support to significantly decrease stress compared to women that did not undergo yoga.”

Beth Heller, co-founder of holistic center Pulling Down the Moon and registered yoga teacher, has helped thousands of fertility patients overcome stressful treatment to find fertility success.

"Over the 14 years that Pulling Down the Moon has been offering this program we have seen the results in the faces and bodies of our students but it's wonderful to finally be able to quantify how yoga can help with the fertility process,” explains Heller. “I think yoga teachers and students everywhere will appreciate that yoga is continuing to make inroads in the area of evidence-based medicine."

Women who wish to experience the benefits of yoga can do a Moon Salute Sequence with an online video from the Pulling Down the Moon Yoga for Fertility program: For more information visit and or download the one page PDF of study findings.

Fertility Centers of Illinois is one of the leading fertility treatment practices in the United States, providing advanced reproductive endocrinology services in the Chicago area for more than 30 years. FCI physicians, embryologists and support staff are stringently chosen based on educational background, medical skills and their ability to collaborate. With a team of 11 nationally and internationally recognized reproductive physicians who treat thousands of patients each year, the practice has earned a reputation for overcoming hard-to-solve fertility issues. FCI is dedicated to medical and clinical excellence and continues to invest in the latest technologies and research. FCI offers a comprehensive range of fertility treatment options including intrauterine insemination, in vitro fertilization, donor egg, gestational carrier, and preimplantation genetic diagnosis, as well as extensive resources to address financial and emotional needs. Fostering a culture for continuous innovation has made FCI home to the annual Midwest Reproductive Symposium which attracts experts in the field of reproductive endocrinology from around the world. FCI has 10 offices conveniently located throughout the Chicagoland area (Buffalo Grove, Chicago/River North, Crystal Lake, Glenview, Highland Park, Hoffman Estates, Lindenhurst, Warrenville, Oakbrook Terrace, and Tinley Park). FCI is a member of the Attain Fertility Network which provides discounted fertility treatment programs. For more information call 877-324-4483 or visit

About Pulling Down the Moon:

Founded in 2002, Pulling Down The Moon is a pioneer Integrative Care for Fertility (ICF) service with locations in Chicago and Washington DC Metro Areas that works in partnership with medical doctors to treat infertility, through individualized, holistic programs focused on fertility yoga, acupuncture, massage, nutrition counseling, spiritual guidance and more. Together, former fertility patients and co-founders Tamara Quinn and Elisabeth Heller M.S are Registered Yoga Teachers and authors of two innovative publications, “Fully Fertile: A Holistic 12 – Week Plan for Optimal Fertility" and "The Infertility Cleanse." Personally understanding the physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual challenges of infertility treatments, their work has been featured in major print and broadcast media outlets including: ABC, Fox, NBC, CW, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times,, Conceive Magazine, Yoga Journal, Massage Magazine, Entrepreneur, US News & World Report and more. Their Yoga For Fertility Program™ has been featured in the New York Times. For more information visit

Media Contact: Gina Kremer Cannon 847.361.0506

Source:Fertility Centers of Illinois