One of the biggest Keays2Wellness is meditation! After reading this blog you will truly understand how it will help your mind, body and soul. The constant commotion of life can lead us further and further away from our spiritual health. Work, kids, family, housework, gym, school, social engagements...the list goes on. We lose touch with who we are, become stressed or even find ourselves becoming ill. Anxiety and Depression is rising fast and majority of people on disability suffer from mental illness. Meditation effects you one 3 levels, Physical, Inner faculty and Deep Inner Self.
Suffering from anxiety and depression myself, I wanted to share 7 Reasons Why You Should Meditate.
Meditation has become popular in western culture. An increasing body of research shows various health benefits associated with meditation and these findings have sparked interest in the field of medicine. The practice of meditation originated in the ancient Vedic times of India and is described in the ancient Vedic texts. Meditation is one of the modalities used in Ayurveda (Science of Life), the comprehensive, natural health care system that originated in the ancient Vedic times of India. The term “meditation” is now loosely used to refer to a large number of diverse techniques. According to Vedicscience, the true purpose of meditation is to connect oneself to one's deep inner Self. Neurological and physiological correlates of meditation have been investigated previously. (1)
7 REASONS YOU SHOULD BE MEDITATING
1. STRESS, ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION REDUCTION
Benefits have been demonstrated for mood and anxiety disorders. (2 , 4, 5 ) A meditation group study conducted showed significantly lower levels of depressive symptoms and greater improvement in mental health and cognitive functioning. By reducing stress, anxiety and depression we increase our immunity to illness. An analysis of the relation between occupational stressors and physical symptoms (gastrointestinal problems, sleep disturbances, dizziness, fatigue, eye strain, headache, appetite and musculoskeletal pain) were investigated. All symptoms were found to have connections to job stressors. Long-term stress exposure is often associated with lack of recovery and disturbed sleep and, in addition to physical illness, can also lead to mental ill health such as burnout, ED, depression and/or anxiety. (6)
2. IMPROVES HEALTH
Researchers at Harvard Medical School discovered that, in long-term practitioners of relaxation methods such as yoga and meditation, far more ''disease-fighting genes'' were active, compared to those who practiced no form of relaxation. Mediation reduces intraocular pressure, lowers stress biomarkers and modulates gene expression in glaucoma. (7)
Physiological benefits include reduced blood pressure, heart rate, lactate, cortisol, and epinephrine; decreased metabolism, breathing pattern, oxygen utilization, and carbon dioxide elimination; and increased melatonin, dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEA-S), skin resistance, and relative blood flow to the brain. Meditation increases regional cerebral blood flow in the frontal and anterior cingulate regions of the brain, increases efficiency in the brain's executive attentional network, and increases electroencephalogram (EEG) coherence.
A study on the effect of meditation on the executive attentional network found that meditators were faster on all tasks. With aging, the brain cortical thickness (gray matter, which contains neurons) decreases, whereas meditation experience is associated with an increase in gray matter in the brain. Improved health and modulated gene expression in prostate cancer patients was shown in a study who were not treated with surgery, radiation, or hormone therapy. The list goes on!
3. SLOW DOWN AGING
Did you now that chronic stress can disrupt chromosome stability and shorten the protective caps of our chromosomes? This type of development is associated with accelerated aging and related diseases. Meditation and Yoga practices improve the chromosome activity and length. A study investigating the effect of meditation on the aging process showed that long-term meditators have a significantly younger biological age compared to short-term meditators and controls. Meditation has resulted in a significant reduction in payments to physicians by a government health insurance agency. (1)
4. MEDITATE THE PAIN AWAY
How many of you are feeling aches and pains? However, did you know part of that pain may actually be in your head? In fact, a study published in the April 6, 2011, issue of the Journal of Neuroscience found just 80 minutes of meditation training could cut pain perception nearly in half. In the study, volunteers were given a pain test before and after the meditation training; brain scans using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of pain-reception regions revealed significant changes before and after meditation, too.Another study, this one published in 2010 in the journal Pain, found that people who regularly meditated found pain less unpleasant. The reason? Apparently their brains are busy focusing on the present and so anticipate the pain less, blunting its emotional impact. Researchers are uncertain as to how meditation changes brain function over time to result in these pain-dampening effects. (8)
5. LETS TALK ABOUT SEX
Let's get this party started! Research published in 2011 in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine found that mindfulness meditation training, can enhance a woman's sexual experience. So, Amanda how is this possible? Calming the mind can get the mojo going! We often have self judgement, negative talk, internal chatter regarding the day that often fill our minds during sex. Our minds are keeping us from the full sexual experience. In the new study, college women who meditated were quicker to become aroused when viewing erotic photos compared with non-meditating women. Efficacy of meditation techniques has been found for to improve symptoms of premenstrual syndrome, and menopausal symptoms.
6. BRAIN POWER
Research on the effects of meditation on the brain suggest that it can make you smarter! A UCLA study published in March 2012 in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience found that long-term meditators (who practiced various techniques, including Samatha, Vipassana, Zen and more) have larger amounts of gyrification, or folding, of the brain's cortex than people who don't meditate. The extra folds may allow the meditators to process information faster than others.
Another UCLA study found that people who meditate also have stronger connections between brain regions and show less age-related brain shrinkage. The bulking-up in white matter was seen throughout the brain, the researchers reported in July 2011 in the journal NeuroImage. Past work has also shown more gray matter in certain brain regions in meditators compared with non-meditators. (White matter comprises the long, spindly appendages on some neurons that transmit electrical signals used by brain cells to communicate; gray matter is made up of the cell bodies that essentially use the information shared by the white matter to "do the math.") (8)
7. I AM ONE WITH THE FORCE, AND THE FORCE IS WITH ME
Meditation is hanging out with your soul. It's the easiest way to connect with my higher self, spirit guides, angels and my loved ones who have passed on. The spiritual world most likely will try to come to you while you sleep because it's the only way they can reach you. They send us signs all the time! But are we listening? Probably not!
Everyone has a sixth sense but most of us ignore it or hide it away. Many people ask me how or when I developed my Intuitive Mediumship abilities. It was always a part of me but like any skill you are naturally gifted with, it still takes practice, study and patience. If you want to tune in to your higher self and get answers from spirit, meditation is key. It opens your 'third eye' or what is called the pineal gland located in your forehead. I like to explain it as 'dreaming while your awake'. because the pineal glad produces melatonin. This is responsible for enabling us to sleep. Meditation develops your ability to visualize and connect. Be open to a spiritual awakening and become enlightened!
1. Meditation: Process and Effects
2. Arias AJ, Steinberg K, Banga A, Trestman RL. Systematic review of the efficacy of meditation techniques as treatments for medical illness. J Altern Complement Med. 2006;12:817–32. [PubMed]
3. Burns JL, Lee RM, Brown LJ. The effect of meditation on self-reported measures of stress, anxiety, depression, and perfectionism in a college population. J College Stud Psychother. 2011;25:132–44.
4. Elder C, Nidich S, Moriarty F, Nidich R. Effect of Transcendental Meditation on employee stress, depression, and burnout: A randomized controlled study. Perm J. 2014;18:19–23. [PMC free article][PubMed]
5. Lavretsky H, Epel ES, Siddarth P, Nazarian N, St Cyr N, Khalsa DS, et al. A pilot study of yogic meditation for family dementia caregivers with depressive symptoms: Effects on mental health, cognition, and telomerase activity. Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2013;28:57–65. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
6. Nature-Based Stress Management Course for Individuals at Risk of Adverse Health Effects from Work-Related Stress—Effects on Stress Related Symptoms, Workability and Sick Leave (Pubmed)
7. Mindfulness Meditation Reduces Intraocular Pressure, Lowers Stress Biomarkers and Modulates Gene Expression in Glaucoma: A Randomized Controlled Trial. (Pubmed)
8. Mind Games: 7 Reasons You Should Meditate, Life Science