Meditation has done wonders for both mental and physical health. Research has been confirming this for some time.
Meditation can be described as a quiet time of thinking, reflection and relaxation of the mind and body.
In days gone by, meditation was warily considered to be something from the “east”. It was a foreign concept.
The 1960s made meditation a little more mainstream and in 2014, it’s not only done by everyone from stay-at-home parents to executives to athletes, it’s also recommended by the medical community.
There are many reasons why meditation can be so powerful. Let’s focus on five.
Stress is a big factor, and indeed sometimes a cause, in illness. Stress is linked to high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, mental illnesses and weak immune systems. While short term stress can actually bolster health and productivity, it’s long term stress that can negatively affect the mind and body.
Read an excellent report from the BBC about a study conducted by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh here.
The BBC article stated that the study found that while unhealthy behaviors are certainly a factor in ill-health, “... one of the key molecular players in these pathways is also among the most familiar of the body’s signalling chemicals: cortisol, a steroid commonly referred to as a “stress hormone”.
Cortisol is produced by the adrenal glands in response to stress.
The original view of cortisol was straightforward. Higher levels of stress prompt the adrenals to make more cortisol. The more cortisol you have in circulation, the harder it is on your health.
Meditation forces the body to calm down, to take time to reevaluate life and goals. It opens the mind and body up enabling you to relax and de-stress by employing quiet and calmness as you meditate.
Sure, there are people who always like company. But most people need alone time, even if they think they don’t.