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Thursday, November 14, 2013

Ten Reasons Why You Should Meditate


1.  is a way to relieve your mind of rambling thoughts.  A study reported in the Brain Research Bulletin, vol. 85, May 2011 says that people who meditate regularly demonstrate enhanced alpha power in the brain. Alpha waves are associated with a calmer and more relaxed mind.

2.  can change the brain's circuitry and increase gray matter.  In 2012, Duke University Medical Center found that meditation practitioners had greater gray matter volume than non-meditators.  They also discovered that gray matter volume positively correlates with the duration of meditation practice.

3.  reduces anxiety. On June 3, 2013 the Medical Center in Winston-Salem, NC reported that anxiety can be significantly reduced through meditation.

4.  decreases the aging process. A recent study conducted at Harvard Medical School shows that Loving-Kindness Meditation increases the length of telomeres. Telomeres are the ends of chromosomes and the longer they are the healthier cells are.

5.  improves memory. "We discovered that mindfulness meditation enhances numerous mental abilities, including rapid memory recall," said Catherine Kerr of the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, Harvard Medical School. "The ability for the brain to screen out distractions could explain its superior ability to rapidly remember and incorporate new facts."

6.  helps with depression. A study done July, 2013 at the University of Washington School of Medicine found that Loving-Kindness meditation reduced symptoms of depression as well as PTSD.

7.  improves heart function. The International Journal of Cardiology, July 24, 2013 reported that meditation positively influences the cardiovascular system. Meditation can have beneficial effects on patients with cardiovascular diseases including inflammation, heart rate variability, and myocardial infarction. 

8.  reduces stress. The Dept. of Neurology, UCLA Medical School did a long-term study on the effects meditation has on stress and stress related symptoms. They found that meditation reduces stress hormones and decreases neurotoxicity.

9.  increases attention, awareness, and motivation. The Dept. of Psychology, Brigham Young Univ. did a study and showed that meditation improves attention, awareness, and motivational salience.

10.  is just plain good for you. In the Neuroscience Research journal, vol. 71, Sept. 2011 - 343 long-term meditators were compared to non-meditators and they found that the meditators scored significantly better (p<0.005) on pain, mental health, general health, emotions, social functioning, and vitality.

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