Various practitioners and civilizations for thousands of years for many reasons have used meditation. As we continue to explore and scientifically explain the ever-growing list of benefits of meditation, more of us can receive those benefits and allow our bodies to heal in more profound ways than we could have ever imagined.
As we improve our ability to scientifically see the unseen, we are able to find new evidence of what the ancients knew thousands of years ago but did not have a way to gather measurable evidence.
Since we are spiritual beings (energy, vibration) living in physical bodies, it would stand to reason that practices connecting us to the higher vibrations of the planet and Universe at large would help “reset” our vibration, allowing our physical bodies to come back to a “normal” state of health and balance. Recent studies show the power that meditation can truly hold for our physical bodies.
The first study documented by the American Cancer Society used salivary cortisol levels and telomere length (TL), which are on the tip ends of the chromosomes that protect the DNA, to determine the benefits of mindfulness based cancer recovery (MBCR) and supportive expressive group therapy (SET) in cancer recovery. (1,2)
Reducing stress through mindfulness can increase telomerase, which is the telomere-lengthening enzyme that scientists have determined can serve as a marker for our overall health.
According to the scientists, “To our knowledge, the current study is the first report to demonstrate a potential effect of these psychosocial interventions on TL among distressed breast cancer survivors. There was little discernment between MBCR and SET. Both maintained TL over the 3-month intervention period, whereas women in the control condition demonstrated a trend toward decreases in relative TL.” (3)
“Similarly, in our previous report of the larger parent trial, both the MBCR and SET groups maintained the steepness of salivary cortisol slopes compared with those in the control group, whose slopes became flatter, largely due to elevations in evening cortisol levels. Together, these changes suggest an effect of the interventions on potentially important biomarkers of psychosocial stress.” (3)
“Given the increasingly well-documented association between TL and cancer initiation and survival, this finding adds to the literature supporting the potential for stress-reducing interventions to impact important disease-regulating processes and ultimately disease outcome.” (3)
Harvard has demonstrated, through MRI studies, meditation literally rebuilds the brain’s grey matter in as little as 8 weeks.
For the first time in history, we are seeing clear and measurable evidence that, in addition to healing DNA, areas of the body we previously thought once damaged beyond healing can in fact repair, as with the brain.
“It is fascinating to see the brain’s plasticity and that, by practicing meditation, we can play an active role in changing the brain and can increase our well-being and quality of life,” says Britta Hölzel, a research fellow at MGH and Giessen University in Germany. (4, 5)
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