Mindfulness and meditation have been in the news a lot lately. Maybe it is the challenging and chaotic times our society is facing. Or, maybe people are starting to realize there are simple, natural ways to improve their health. Regardless of the reasons that people are adopting meditation, research keeps uncovering new health benefits associated with practicing it. If any of these health goals sound familiar, it may be time to learn some basic meditation techniques that will help move you closer to achieving them.
1. Reduced Stress Levels
Stress is a natural state and one that everyone will experience. It is a reaction stemming from the basic fight or flight response. However, prolonged periods of stress result in elevated levels of cortisol in the bloodstream. Over time, this can lead to inflammation, mental health disorders and increased incidence of physical disease. You can reduce stress levels naturally through meditation and similar relaxation techniques.
2. Increased Focus and Attention Span
Do you find your mind wandering from topic to topic as you struggle to focus? Considering the increasing rates of ADD and ADHD, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that you are not alone in your effort to concentrate. The simple act of being present in the moment and teaching your body and mind to slow down can help increase concentration and focus. As an added bonus, it also appears to help improve memory and comprehension.
3. Fewer Cravings
If you are looking to eat healthier and lose weight, then you know how food cravings can quickly derail your progress. Thrive reviews show that overcoming these cravings is one of the biggest obstacles to long-term weight loss. Luckily, once you adopt a new behavior for a couple of months, it becomes a habit that is easier to stick with. Many people have found that meditation is a useful tool that helps reduce food cravings so you are better positioned to succeed. It can also help mitigate stress and guilt that results from those cravings. For the same reasons, meditation appears to help many people in their efforts to overcome addiction.
4. Lower Levels of Pain and Inflammation
People who practice meditation regularly find that it decreases pain levels. For those living with a chronic health condition, that can be a life-changing effect. For many people, it may be able to replace some or all pain medications. Be sure to talk with your doctors before you make any changes if you are considering adding meditation to your pain management program. Most health care practitioners welcome the addition of complementary holistic approaches to care.
5. Improved Sleep
Most adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night. Without it, you could find yourself suffering from the effects of sleep deprivation within a week or less. If you are struggling to fall or stay asleep, try adding a brief, relaxing meditation to your evening routine. It relaxes your mind and body, has numerous health benefits, making a restful state easier to achieve thanks to meditation.
6. More Positive Moods
The world could certainly benefit from a few more positive people, and meditation may be just what you need to feel more upbeat and uplifted. There is strong evidence that it can improve moods and reduce rates of anxiety and depression. In addition, it contributes to a more positive overall outlook.
7. Decreased Blood Pressure
Hypertension affects nearly half of all Americans and more than a billion people worldwide. Considering that it is a major contributing factor for heart disease and cardiac-related deaths, that is a serious problem. Meditation offers a non-pharmaceutical intervention that has been shown to reduce blood pressure readings in several studies. Older participants who already have been diagnosed with hypertension appear to have the best results.
8. Stronger Mind-Body Connection
A mind-body connection is linked to more positive overall health outcomes. If you are looking for a way to feel more centered, grounded and aware of yourself, there are plenty of meditation options that can help. Look for techniques that focus on mindfulness and awareness to help you achieve your goals.
Health Benefits of Meditation
Mindful meditation is linked to lower rates of chronic disease, food cravings and reduced pain levels. It can also help increase focus, concentration and memory. With all of the amazing health benefits associated with meditation, you are bound to see some positive results from regular practice.