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When was the last time you meditated? The practice may not be just for yoga anymore. Recent studies show that mindful meditation has a positive effect on gene expression – more specifically those related to pro-inflammatory genes and inflammatory pathways within the body.
The effects of daily mediation were researched in a group of people experienced in meditation, as well as a control group of people untrained in the art of meditation who were asked to perform quiet, non-meditative activities. Results showed that the meditative group experienced a reduction in pro-inflammatory genes, as well as various other positive genetic and molecular changes.
Currently, the American Heart Association advocates the practice of mindful meditation as a preventative measure for those with inflammatory disorders and other conditions. However, this particular study was further proof that the therapeutic effects of a calm mind can have a physical impact on the body.
Taking a time out to meditate can actually affect you positively on the molecular level – why not try it? Taking just a 20 minute break to sit in silence and calm the mind supports numerous health benefits including stress reduction, increased focus, lower blood pressure, and – as shown by this study – a positive change in genes that are the target of many anti-inflammatory medications and analgesic drugs.