You may have heard that there are countless benefits of meditation. It assists in both relaxation, concentration, emotional balance, and more. But did you know that these and so many other services are being increasingly proven through studies?
In addition to the best-known benefits, studies are appearing that indicate and prove so many others. We know today may be only a small part of the infinite blessings that the practice can bring us.
Curious to know what studies have proven the benefits of meditation? Then keep reading!
What is meditation
Meditation is a practice that goes beyond the contemplative gaze. Through it, you can have a deep connection with your being. With the mind and body in perfect harmony, it is possible to enjoy a meditative state.
Another way to exemplify what meditation is is to be in the here and now, in the present moment. We are often thinking about past problems and planning for the future, and we are not present in our daily lives.
So the benefits of meditation go beyond Mindfulness, anxiety relief, and relaxation. It is a simple and powerful practice that can transform lives.
Benefits of meditation
We have already talked here on the blog about some benefits of meditation, but this time we will present studies that reinforce and prove how the practice can benefit a better quality of life and well-being.
Meditation reduces panic attack symptoms.
The practice of meditation can help you reduce the symptoms of a panic attack and the symptoms of other anxiety disorders.
According to the research published by the American Journal of Psychiatry, the practice can decrease symptoms when practiced regularly. So, the recommended thing is that the person can make meditation a habit in his life.
One way is to practice a morning meditation, which will give you the confidence to follow the day with more tranquility.
Meditation relieves chronic inflammation.
For example, people who suffer from chronic inflammatory conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, gastritis, and asthma – in which psychological stress plays an important role – can benefit from the practice.
According to the study published in Medical News Today, the Mindfulness technique reduces stress since it involves breathing practices. In the long run, besides helping to relieve inflammation, it also plays a vital role in the well-being of those who practice it.
Meditation improves cognition
For researchers, the mindfulness technique also improves cognition, suggesting that four days of meditation may already have positive effects on mood and cognition.
The study looked at 24 students who participated in four sessions and another group of 25 students who heard a book being narrated.
Both groups had a positive response regarding the research and showed an improvement in mood. However, only the group that went through the practice of Mindfulness had effects such as reduced fatigue, anxiety, and increased attention.
Meditation is an alternative to reduce sleeping pills.
In partnership with the Sleep Institute, researchers from UNIFESP believe that meditation is an alternative in reducing sleeping pills.
Several factors can lead to insomnia, a sleep disorder that has affected 1 in 5 people. Anxiety, irritability, and restlessness are some common reactions among people who deal with this sleep disorder.
Meditation reduces the likelihood of depression-related symptoms in teenagers.
For the researchers and reducing the symptoms associated with depression, the practice can also help prevent the development of the disease.
The study published in Science Daily was carried out with 400 students from 5 schools in Flanders, Belgium aged between 13 and 20. They were divided into two groups, one of the controls and one of the tests. Before starting the test, the test group reported depression in 21%, whereas the control group reported 24%.
Shortly after Mindfulness training, the number dropped to 15% in the test group and increased by 27% in the control group. After six months, the doctor was 16% in the test group and 31% in control.
How can meditation help your career?
Although there is already more knowledge about the benefits of meditation, there is still a stereotype that it is a paranormal activity that only calm and interested individuals in mysticism can practice. The truth is that meditation is a practice of democratic self-knowledge: anyone can do it.
To calm the mind and reduce stress, meditation is already used in the corporate environment. Yes, oddly enough, turning off your mind for a few moments can help you awaken it in others, especially to carry out your job functions.
From benefits to the mind in a more punctual way, meditation also brings significant changes in the course of dealing with interpersonal relationships and situations of adversity and improving productivity and satisfaction at work and in life in general. Below, we share some of the benefits that this activity brings:
According to a study by the University of California (USA), people who meditate for more than ten years have lower cortisol and adrenaline levels, hormones associated with anxiety and depression, compared to those who do not have this habit. During a single meditation practice, these hormones are reduced in production, contributing to a calmer state throughout the day.
Research conducted by the University of Washington (USA) revealed that meditation improves multitask ability even in stressful situations. In this way, the individual can fulfill different functions without feeling exhausted. This increases your productivity and your satisfaction since you feel more useful in your routine.
Increased cognition and mood
According to research published by the global company Elsevier, four days of meditation is enough to reduce fatigue and anxiety and increase concentration in the present. During those days, the practice resulted in an improvement in the participants’ cognitive system and an advance in the way they deal with problems.
How to begin?
Contrary to what many people think, meditation is not just about sitting with your mind empty. Some practices focus on not thinking, but it is not a rule. Among the different methods and purposes, the most widespread today is Mindfulness, which boils down to teaching the present through breathing and body awareness.
Several apps can help you meditate with guided lessons and explanatory videos. We have separated some reliable and available for Android and iOS that can help you on this journey:
Headspace has several explanatory videos with animations that make meditation simple and easy to understand. Also, it offers ten free guided meditation sessions of 10 minutes each.
In Insight Timer, you can meditate with ambient sounds, mantras, or guided audios for different purposes, from sleeping better or peacefully starting the day.
Calm offers guided meditations and ambient sounds and audios for sleep induction, breathing programs, masterclasses, and relaxing music.
See the benefits of meditation and learn how to combine it with physical activity
We no longer hear that meditation is only a matter of monks and people who are very “spiritually evolved”, do we?
Nowadays, meditating is increasingly widespread, disconnecting from religions and often being a medical treatment for cases of anxiety and depression.
The benefits of meditation are diverse, bringing feelings of well-being, fullness, and inner peace. When combined with physical exercise, this activity becomes a real weapon against some physical and psychological diseases.
Are you interested in the subject? Continue reading and understand the power that meditation has on our mind and body. Come on?
What is meditation?
The answer to this question can be relatively diffuse because it depends on the culture, perspective, and purposes you practically have when meditating.
From a more scientific point of view, we can say that meditation is a mental technique that allows the control or emptying of thoughts.
This technique aims to improve neural connections – and seeks to redo some brain circuits that, if defective, lead to diseases such as depression and anxiety.
How should meditation be done?
Just as there are several concepts of meditation, the way to do it also varies greatly.
Some practitioners meditate traditionally, with their legs crossed, while others prefer to meditate in chairs or armchairs (and even standing or walking).
All these ways of meditating have in common is the control of the breath, because it is through it that you can calm your thoughts and reach a state that goes beyond thinking and not thinking – or, as many say, “nirvana.”
What does science say about the benefits of meditation?
Several scientific articles around the world prove the effectiveness of meditation to improve mental and physical health. See some of them.
According to an article published in the American magazine Psychology Today, daily meditation considerably lowers an individual’s stress levels, regardless of their situation.
Another study also showed that meditation practitioners might be more immune to pathogens, increasing antibodies against some viruses and bacteria.
Besides, scientists have confirmed that meditation also improves sleep quality and performance in studies, including adolescents.
Why combine meditation and physical exercise?
Healthy mind, healthy body. This Latin phrase could not be better used to summarize why it is beneficial to combine meditation with physical activities.
This is because the combination provides practically the best of both worlds, both physically and mentally.
Also, meditation helps in physical activities by increasing the practitioner’s endurance since he needs to dive for several minutes within himself and change his state of consciousness until reaching the expected well-being.
Likewise, physical exercise also helps in meditation by releasing dopamine, the wellness hormone. With more dopamine in the neuronal circuits, meditating for long minutes is much more comfortable and reaching the state of “nirvana.”
As we have seen, the benefits of meditation go far beyond the feeling of peace and relaxation. Therefore, this practice can improve physical activity performance, mostly if done just before the exercises.
When combined, physical exercises and meditation can significantly improve the quality of life for anyone.
So, did you like the article? Enjoy and share this content on your social networks and promote well-being among your friends and family!