Meditation is becoming a bit more in vogue these days. Although for the wise, it’s been in vogue for thousands of years.
There are many types of meditation, from Mantra meditation, Loving Kindness, Transcendental, Vipassana and on and on. All have their uses, but here I am going to talk about meditation in general and 6 reasons why it’s beneficial to your health.
I started meditating regularly in 2012, having only attempted it once before in 2000. I started with just 10 breaths before bed. After 3 weeks I moved up to 20 breaths. Then a few minutes and after about 3 months was up to 15 minutes, which is what I currently do. I have since incorporated 15 minutes in the morning too. In 2013, I also undertook a 10 day silent meditation retreat called Vipassana, which had me meditating for approximately 12 hours a day!
You don’t have to do any of that though, but after reading the following, I hope you will see the benefit in starting somewhere.
1 – Boosts Your Immune System
Researches from Harvard University Medical School published a paper detailing the results of a statistically significant study that showed how meditation can boost our immune system. This isn’t the only study on the topic. There are in fact thousands of studies on meditation showing a host of benefits in addition to the immune system.
2 – Decrease Inflammation from Pain
A study published in the Journal of Biological Psychiatry shows how meditation can reduce inflammation. Also, a study from Wake Forest Baptist Medical Centre found mindfulness meditation reduces emotional pain by 44% and pain intensity by 27%. The Journal of Neuroscience showed that 80 minutes over 4 days (20 minutes a day) of meditation was enough to reduce pain by 50%.
3 – Reduces Blood Cholesterol and Blood Pressure
There are many studies out there which have examined the effect of meditation on blood cholesterol and pressure and found that practicing meditation helps both of these.
4 – Faster Information Processing
Research from UCLA expressed how that meditators have stronger thicker folds in the brain which lead to faster information processing. Who doesn’t want to be a bit smarter?
5 – Keeps Brain Younger
Another report from UCLA also showed how meditation can help slow the age related loss of grey matter in the brain.
6 – Slows Down Ageing Process
Meditation can increase the production of telemorase – an enzyme that helps build protection from fraying chromosomes as they divide (an indication of biological ageing). Effectively slowing down the ageing process (compared to others). There’s a lot more about telemorase and telomeres (the protective bits at the end of chromosomes, a bit like aglets on shoelaces) in my blog here: http://harikalymnios.com/how-to-be-younger-healthier-and-live-longer-book-of-the-month
There are tons and tons of studies on meditation. It’s not woo woo at all. Anything that’s survived for 5000+ years as a tool, must have something to it. You can do all the Google research you like – you’ll find plenty of supporting evidence on meditations benefits, but all you really need to do is try it out for a few weeks.
Do you already meditate? What do you think? Comment below.
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