Effect of Tai Chi on Markers of Oxidative Stress: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis


Research Unit on Gerontology, Facultad de Estudios Superiores Zaragoza, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad de México P.C. 09230, Mexico

Date of publication

March 2021


This study aimed to synthesize the evidence of the effect of practicing Tai Chi on oxidative stress markers (OxSM). Methods: This systematic review and meta-analysis was conducting using the MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, ScienceDirect, Scopus, Epistemonikos, Lilacs, and Ovid databases to identify randomized (RCT) and non-randomized (NRCT) clinical trials that evaluated the Tai Chi effect on OxSM compared to sedentary behavior, walking or yoga. Pooled mean differences (MDs) with 95% confidence intervals (95%CI) were estimated using the inverse variance method to determine the effect of Tai Chi on OxSM. PROSPERO register: CRD42019138362. Results: Five RCT and five NRCT were included. Compared to sedentary behavior, regular Tai Chi practice increases the levels of the enzymes superoxide dismutase (MD = 34.97 U/mL, (95%CI, 9.45 to 60.48), 344 participants) and catalase (MD = 15.63 U/mL, (95%CI, 4.05 to 27.22), 110 participants), as well as reducing the levels of lipoperoxides (MD = −0.02 µmol/L, (95%CI, −0.04 to −0.00), 234 participants). For comparisons with walking or yoga, only one study per activity was identified comparing the effect on OxSM. Conclusions: Regular Tai Chi practice increases the levels of superoxide dismutase and catalase, as well as reducing the levels of lipoperoxides. More studies are necessary to determine the effect of Tai Chi on OxSM when compared to other physical activities.


Sign up for the Longevity Center email newsletter to receive notification of:

  • Upcoming Classes and Workshops
  • Discounts on select classes and events
  • Announcements, Updates, and News

To sign up, please fill in your first and last name and a valid email address. When you’re ready, click the Subscribe button,

We do not share your email address with anyone. The Longevity Center respects your privacy and will only use your email address to communicate to you periodically on the above listed topics. You can unsubscribe at any time by following the “Unsubscribe” link at the bottom of every email, or by contacting us.

Terms and Conditions

By participating in a class or clinic session at The Longevity Center, you agree to the following Terms and Conditions:

The Longevity Center class/clinic is intended to present information and techniques according to the instructor/therapist’s best knowledge and experience, and is to be used by the student at his or her own discretion. The adoption and application of the material offered in the class/clinic must therefore be the student’s own responsibility.

I understand that this class/clinic is for the basic purpose of health maintenance, not for any treatment of any specific illness, injury or condition. I understand that the instructor/therapist, and his assistants, are not qualified to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any physical or mental illness, and nothing said or taught in class/clinic can be constructed as such. I understand that the class/clinic is not a substitute for any treatment by a licensed healthcare professional, and I will not attempt to use it as such.

I release the instructor/therapist and his assistant(s), the author and publisher, and the owners and operators of the premises on which the classes/clinics are conducted, from any liability for my class/clinic participation and will hold him or her harmless for any results of this class/clinic.

The information from the Class/Clinic is protected by Copyright law. The reproduction, written, electronic, and otherwise, in part or in whole, for commercial or personal purposes is expressly prohibited without prior written consent. Photographing, audiotaping, or videotaping are prohibited.

Use of Master Hua-Ching Ni’s works and the Ni Family publications can only be used through proper authorization as stated in The Mentor Handbook of The Integral Way Society.

The Longevity Center operates in accordance with California Bill SB577 for non-licensed professionals.