During the summer of 1992, I began to experience anxiety attacks and was unable to sleep through the night. I would wake up every few hours with my heart racing, certain that I was getting ready to have a heart attack. The anxiety could strike at any time. I could be driving home from work, on vacation, or simply having a family dinner. A couple of times, I was rushed to the emergency room suffering from a stress reaction—but it sure seemed like I was suffering a heart attack. In the spring of 2003, after trying for years to establish an exercise and/or diet regimen to alleviate my condition, I resigned myself to the fact that I would need prescription medicine to combat this daily nightmare and prepared to visit my doctor.
Two weeks before my doctor’s appointment, I was in my local deli and I saw the Dahn Yoga brochure heralding the opening of a center in Bethesda a few blocks from my office. Out of desperation, and fear of being on medication the rest of my life, I went for an energy-check up. After that session, I signed up for three months, unsure of what to expect but hopeful. I went to class three times a week, and within a month, my anxiety attacks had disappeared. I was finally able to sleep through the night. My fears of death and of having a heart attack vanished. I was, and am still, so grateful to be rid of the daily fear that would grab me without warning. I thought things could not improve much more, but I was to be pleasantly surprised by an equally great, and unexpected, benefit derived from my yoga practice.
For over two years I had been on a cholesterol-lowering drug (Zocor) because my cholesterol level had been as high as 280. On Zocor, my level had stabilized to a 210-200 level. I started attending regular classes at the Bethesda center in June 2003, and after 4 months, my cholesterol level dropped to 147! During this time, I would go class at least 3 times a week, and during the work day, I would drink a few cups of green tea and/or the brown rice tea purchased from the center. I neither added nor subtracted anything from my regular diet over this time (except for the brand of green tea). The only difference was my involvement with the Dahn Center.
In October 2003, my doctor removed me from the prescription medicine with my promise that I would have regular check-ups. To this day, my cholesterol level is still low and I am still off the medication.
I attribute my wonderful results to the physical and mental exercises taught by the professionals at the Dahn Yoga Center. I am convinced that the things taught here have enriched my life, focused my life, and, literally, saved my life.