12 Benefits Of Meditation, PROVEN By Science By Matt Caron

It used to be thought that meditation was only for those who live the life of a recluse monk. But now meditation is going mainstream. This is for no other reason other than the fact that it works. Time and again, meditation has been proven to be effective for people of all walks of life, bringing all kinds of benefits to them. Part of the reason for this new popularity of meditation is a wealth of scientific research attesting to its amazing range of healing properties.

  1. Reduces Stress– In a recent small study people who practiced loving-kindness meditation were found to have lower stress levels and lower heart rates.
  2. Treats Addictions The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine reported a study on qigong meditation by 248 participants in a short-term residential addiction treatment program. The meditators reported having fewer cravings, less anxiety, and less withdrawal symptoms.
  3. Slows the Aging Process– Telomeres are protective caps at the end of each strand of DNA. Their length serves as a marker of accelerated aging. Every time a cell divides telomeres get shorter, indicating more aging. Harvard researchers measured telomeres in a group of 37 people. They found that women who practiced loving-kindness meditation had significantly longer telomeres than control participants who did not meditate.
  4. Alleviates Depression In a randomized trial of 91 fibromyalgia patients with depression symptoms, half the patients received an 8-week course in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). They were found to have significant boosts in self-esteem and reduction in depressive symptoms.
  5. Relieves Chronic Pain– In a study, 89 patients with chronic neck pain were assigned either to weekly 90-minute jyoti meditation or to a home-based exercise program. The meditation training significantly reduced pain compared to the exercise program.
  6. Reduces Symptoms of PTSD– A recent study shows that transcendental meditation can relieve PTSD and anxiety disorder. Researchers from the Dwight David Eisenhower Army Medical Center’s Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic at Fort Gordon, Georgia looked at 74 active-duty service members with PTSD or anxiety disorder. Half of them began practicing TM (Transcendental Meditation). At the end of one month, 83.7 percent of the meditators had stabilized!
  7. Reduces Blood Pressure, Heart Attack, and Stroke– According to a scientific statement issued by the American Heart Association, transcendental meditation significantly lowers blood pressure. The AHA cited a randomized, controlled trial for the secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease among 201 black patients. During an average follow-up of 5.4 years, all-cause mortality, heart attack and
  8. Relieves Symptoms of Schizophrenia– A study in the Journal of Clinical Psychologyfound that loving-kindness meditation by individuals suffering from schizophrenia-spectrum disorders can reduce negative symptoms such as the inability to feel pleasure, lack of motivation, and asocial behavior.stroke were significantly reduced by 48% in the TM group.
  9. Relieves Symptoms of Schizophrenia– A study in the Journal of Clinical Psychologyfound that loving-kindness meditation by individuals suffering from schizophrenia-spectrum disorders can reduce negative symptoms such as the inability to feel pleasure, lack of motivation, and asocial behavior.
  10. Improves Sleep– Researchers in India studied 30 men who practiced cyclic meditation twice a day for about 23 minutes each time. Cyclic meditation combines yoga postures with supine rest. They found that on the nights following the meditation practice the men exhibited significantly more slow-wave sleep, less rapid-eye-movement sleep, and fewer numbers of awakenings during the night. The meditators also reported feeling more refreshed the next morning.
  11. Improves Heart and Lung Function– Brazilian researchers tested meditation in a randomized study of 19 patients with congestive heart failure. The meditation group listened to a 30-minute meditation audiotape twice a day. After 12 weeks the meditation group had better quality of life and heart/lung function.
  12. Reduces Headaches– A randomized study in the journal ‘Headache’ reported that migraine sufferers who participated in an 8-week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program had 1.4 fewer migraines per month than controls. In addition, their headaches were less severe.

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