Health and Meditation

Mindworks | Mindfulness Meditation Blog | Health and Meditation

In recent years, researchers have been looking very closely at what meditation does for health. If you traveled back in time 2500 years, met the Buddha and asked him “What does meditation do for you?” it’s unlikely that health benefits would have been on top of his list. Back in the day, meditation was used for other purposes—getting to know the mind and working towards enlightenment, for example—but one major goal of meditation, one of the things that meditation has been used for no matter what the ultimate goal might be, has always been to reduce suffering.

If science is so interested in meditation and its practical benefits nowadays, it’s because meditation has been shown to relieve suffering in very concrete ways. Those who learn how to meditate for health, and, more particularly, who learn how to meditate to reduce stress, have a good shot at managing any health conditions more effectively—and they don’t have to read the label. With meditation, generally speaking, the most common “side effects” are improved sleep, better management of chronic conditions, and lower stress levels.

For the best course in meditation for health, we recommend Mind Body Health and Harmony.

Physical health and the mind-body connection

2022-09-25T01:40:18-07:00By |

What is the mind-body connection? The term “mind-body connection” refers to the understanding that our physical health involves more than just the body. Mind is what connects us and our physical body to the rest of the world. Mind connects us to our thoughts, attitudes, and emotions, as well as to our actions and [...]

Mindfulness and Healing

2022-08-14T20:12:23-07:00By |

The importance of mindfulness to self-regulate and build resilience As a physician who practices mind-body medicine, I truly believe that mindfulness is the most powerful tool that I have. I share it with my patients so that they have access to this tool as well. Mindfulness is more powerful than any drug, surgery, or other [...]

Change Your Perception of Stress through Meditation

2022-06-20T17:18:46-07:00By |

How can I change my perception of stress? Authentic meditation practice can help us change our perception of stress and our reaction to it. “Stress” is a catchall term that covers a variety of reactions to unwelcome circumstances, from anxiety to panic. When we allow stress to run the show, it impacts our bodies and [...]

Proven Solutions for Chronic Pain

2022-04-18T17:21:16-07:00By |

Harnessing the power of the mindbody approach Understanding acute and chronic pain Acute, subacute, and chronic pain are different. With acute pain, for example an injury, you may hurt for up to six weeks while you’re healing. This might be a sprained ankle,  a contusion like a bruised arm, a shoulder injury from playing sports, [...]

Meditation and Physical Pain

2022-04-30T19:42:04-07:00By |

Physical Pain vs Suffering (optional!) - What are the key differences? By using physical pain as an object of meditation we can transform our relationship to pain and in doing so, free ourselves from the suffering it causes. Whether you’re dealing with chronic pain or any bodily pain that arises during meditation, staying present and [...]

Meditation and the Autonomic Nervous System

2022-06-12T19:02:08-07:00By |

About Your Nervous System: Calming Your Nerves & Heart with Meditation You might have heard meditation can heal your central nervous system, but what does that mean and how does it work? Meditation activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which has a calming effect. But it’s balance, not calm, that’s the true signifier of nervous system [...]

How Meditation Will Change Your Life

2022-10-04T12:12:25-07:00By |

There’s an old meditation joke that says everyone should meditate for 30 minutes per day. But if you’re too busy to meditate, then you should do it for an hour. The humor points to a truth that meditators know from experience. Meditation will change your life, but for it to work, you have to change [...]

6 Simple Relaxation Techniques for Stress

2022-07-03T20:26:35-07:00By |

6 Simple Stress Management Techniques When we experience stress, it triggers a sympathetic nervous system response. Heart rate, breathing and vigilance all speed up. Once activated, it’s not always easy to let go of this hyper-alert state. Stress management techniques can teach the body to return to balance more quickly. Learning how to calm an [...]

Simple Yogic Breathing Techniques for Stress Relief

2022-09-04T19:29:30-07:00By |

Breathe Deeply: Why Deep Breathing Helps to Calm Your Stress When stressed, our breath gets short and shallow, a sign that fight or flight mode (the sympathetic nervous system) has kicked in. Deep, focused breathing activates the parasympathetic nervous system, reducing anxiety and inducing calm. You can learn simple yogic breathing techniques for stress relief. [...]

Physical Pain, Emotions, and the Brain

2022-04-18T17:23:24-07:00By |

The mind-body connection is a two-way street The concept of the psychosomatic, psychophysiologic, or mindbody process is often misunderstood. This is definitely not to say that the pain you’re experiencing or your problem is make-believe. We’re not saying that you’re creating your pain for some pernicious purpose, or that it has no physiologic basis. What [...]

How Breath and Health are Connected

2022-07-16T19:46:33-07:00By |

Deep Breathing and Physical Health Benefits for Stress and Anxiety You know you depend on breath to live, but did you know you can live better by breathing more intentionally? Shallow, interrupted breathing is correlated with several poor health conditions. We can prevent and even reverse these conditions by purposefully breathing for health and vitality. [...]

Healing Trauma Through Meditation

2022-07-03T20:20:07-07:00By |

What Qualifies as Trauma, and How Does It Affect our Brain Structure? Meditation can help you heal from trauma and PTSD, but it’s not always the cure-all we want it to be. For some, meditation may appear to make trauma worse. Meditation brings conscious awareness to the activity in our mind, but we’re not always [...]

Can Meditation Help Lower My Heart Rate or Blood Pressure?

2022-07-03T20:22:36-07:00By |

Meditation can lower and regulate your heart rate and blood pressure The physiological effects of meditation include a reduction in stress hormones and adrenaline, improved breathing and blood flow to the brain, and improved melatonin regulation. Two more benefits, a reduced heart rate and lower blood pressure, have encouraged doctors to increasingly recommend meditation to [...]

Lifestyle Medicine and a Simple Formula for Wellness

2022-09-25T01:30:07-07:00By |

Keys to Establishing a Lifestyle that Meets Your Goals What is lifestyle medicine? Lifestyle medicine is a form of mind-body medicine where we look to lifestyle changes not only for disease prevention but also for treating illnesses. Many conditions can also be treatable in their early stages through lifestyle adjustments. Type two diabetes is a [...]

How Meditation Improves Physical Health

2022-09-25T01:33:56-07:00By |

The Proven Health Benefits of Daily Meditation According to Science When considering its benefits, most people focus on how meditation can improve mental health. But because body and mind are connected, meditation has great influence over our physical health too. How Meditation Improves Health A healthy body is the manifestation of a healthy mind. So [...]

The Benefits of Exercise, Meditation and Brain Health

2022-11-29T20:31:54-08:00By |

Upon first glance, exercise and meditation offer similar benefits. Both help improve mood, reduce anxiety and depression, and can lead to a calm, balanced state of mind. But exercise is not a replacement for meditation, nor is meditation a replacement for exercise. The two have distinct benefits that are equally important for maintaining general wellbeing. [...]

Does Meditation Release Trauma from the Body?

2022-12-18T17:14:15-08:00By |

How Trauma Gets Stored In The Body (Somatic Memory & Nervous System) Nearly everyone experiences trauma at some point in their lives. Trauma is the result of an overwhelmingly stressful event which we don’t have the resources to process. While some eventually do acknowledge and process their trauma, others carry trauma with them. The energies [...]

The Benefits of Body Scan Meditation

2022-09-14T20:37:57-07:00By |

Promoting our body awareness, stress awareness, and overall relaxation Body scan meditation is just one type of mindfulness meditation. In mindfulness meditation, we often use the breath as an anchor for our distracted, wandering mind. But we can also use sensation in the body (or lack thereof) to keep us connected to the present moment. [...]

Calming Nighttime Anxiety for Better Sleep

2022-10-24T20:27:08-07:00By |

What is Sleep Anxiety? (How to Calm Anxiety at Night) If your anxiety gets worse at night, preventing you from sleeping well, you’re not alone. More than half of adults in the US say their anxiety keeps them awake at night. And when anxiety makes falling asleep or staying asleep difficult, that lost sleep leads [...]

Stress Reduction And Meditation

2022-09-25T01:41:31-07:00By |

How Meditation Helps Relieve Stress (Simple and Fast Improvements) When we’re faced with unexpected or challenging circumstances that we don’t have the resources to handle, stress arises. The stress response occurs on a physical, mental and emotional level. Our heart rate and breathing quickens and our sweat glands activate. We may have self-defeating or judgmental [...]

Meditation in Motion

2022-03-10T20:14:03-08:00By |

6 Easy-To-Apply Methods to Practice Mindful Movements Every Day Even the Buddha, who is usually portrayed meditating in perfect stillness, had to move from time to time. He and his followers walked from town to town and went about their daily business of eating, drinking, washing, and so on. Indeed, in one of his most [...]

How Does Meditation Reduce Stress?

2022-04-19T11:49:42-07:00By |

Mindfulness Meditation for Stress and Anxiety Stress and anxiety result when we feel we can’t handle the pressures and adverse situations of everyday life. It’s a simple question of supply and demand of available emotional resources.  It’s not about whether the perceived stressor is valid or not—we feel a responsibility to respond to [...]

Meditation and Stress Prevention

2022-04-19T11:49:52-07:00By |

Preventing stress with regular meditation practice Did you know that meditation doesn’t only relieve stress? Science has shown that meditation prevents stress as well! It’s a practice that we can include in our lives so that whenever adversity and challenges arise—and they will arise whether we want them to or not—we can cope with them [...]

Alcohol and Meditation

2022-10-15T19:55:27-07:00By |

Like other forms of addiction, addiction to alcohol causes great harm to those who are dependent and everyone connected to them. While there are many possible definitions of addiction and alcoholism, one that may sound familiar comes from Alcoholics Anonymous. It proposes that alcoholism is a threefold disease comprised of a physical allergy that [...]

Health Benefits of Meditation

2022-02-09T05:28:34-08:00By |

For centuries, meditation has been used as an effective technique to work with the mind, and also to provide relaxation, well-being and better health. Long before the advent of modern science and medicine, dedicated meditators from a variety of spiritual traditions had already discovered the tremendous benefits of their practice. Beyond its original spiritual purpose, [...]

Can You Quit Smoking Through Meditation?

2021-05-14T11:34:47-07:00By |

We all know someone who is addicted to smoking – a family member, a co-worker or friend, or maybe even you yourself. Once you start smoking and develop a habit out of it, quitting can be extremely challenging. Nicotine, the active compound contained in cigarettes, is one of the most addictive drugs there is. [...]

What Are the Health Benefits of Meditation?

2022-04-19T11:55:02-07:00By |

Many meditation health benefits have a common denominator Beyond serenity: the health benefits of meditation Many of us associate meditation with serenity and mental focus. But meditation comes with a number of very convincing health perks as well. For some practitioners these may be fringe benefits, but for others they may be the most [...]

Meditation for Healing

2022-04-19T11:55:22-07:00By |

In recent years thousands of people have participated in studies that confirm the beneficial effects of meditation for stress, depression, managing chronic pain, insomnia and other conditions. Clearly, there are forms of meditation practice that can help people cope with what ails them. But did you know that in some cases meditation can even help [...]

Meditation and ADHD

2021-05-14T11:34:48-07:00By |

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (or simply ADHD) is a disorder characterized by hyperactivity, extreme distractibility and impulsivity. This condition commonly presents itself during childhood, but it may not be diagnosed in a timely manner. If left unchecked, it usually progresses into adulthood. It is often difficult for people who suffer from ADHD to organize activities, [...]

Meditation and Insomnia

2021-09-23T18:56:04-07:00By |

Meditation and Insomnia: at the crossroads of sleep and mindfulness Have you ever struggled with sleeplessness? It is estimated that at least 10% of the population suffers from symptoms of insomnia. There are two main types of insomnia: acute and chronic. Acute insomnia lasts up to a few weeks, then subsides; the chronic type is [...]

How to Meditate During Pregnancy

2021-05-14T11:36:41-07:00By |

Pregnancy Meditation Pregnant women have to cope with a number of emotional and physical challenges. Hormonal changes can lead to mood swings, increased appetite and nausea, to name but a few. Meditation during pregnancy helps mothers-to-be cope with these changes by fostering relaxation and re-centering. In addition to enhancing peace of mind, meditation helps [...]

Meditation Techniques to Reduce Pain

2022-07-24T11:00:06-07:00By |

Have you ever had to cope with pain? There are two main kinds of physical pain: chronic and acute. Chronic pain is often defined as any kind of pain that persists for 12 weeks or more, such as arthritis. Acute pain arises suddenly and is usually the result of an injury or other identifiable cause, [...]

Can Meditation Help With Anxiety?

2022-05-10T19:57:31-07:00By |

If you constantly feel nervous, worried or uneasy due to past or future events, you may be suffering from anxiety. Everyone gets anxious at some point or another. Generally speaking, being anxious is not a malady – it’s a normal apprehension that’s connected to concerns about the future. But when worry dominates our actions [...]

Can Meditation Help With Depression?

2021-09-23T18:57:27-07:00By |

Abraham Lincoln, Emily Dickinson, Edgar Allen Poe, Charles Dickens, Winston Churchill, Vincent Van Gogh, J. K. Rowling, Adele and countless other artists, bereaved individuals, recent mothers, and John and Jane Does struggled or struggle with depression. In today’s intensely demanding world, stress is a major contributing factor to this increasingly common malady. The symptoms [...]

Meditation for Childbirth and Pregnancy

2021-05-14T11:36:42-07:00By |

A woman’s experience of pregnancy and childbirth very much depends on what’s going on in her life. For many women – those who have “the glow” - pregnancy is an exhilarating time of hope and expectations, while others experience apprehension about the future, fear of pain and physical challenges. Some are dismayed at losing their [...]

Tinnitus Meditation: Clear Your Mind With Guided Meditation

2021-09-23T18:58:08-07:00By |

Those who are dealing with the medical condition called tinnitus perceive noises that others don’t. Common sounds include buzzing, hissing, and the (in)famous ringing in the ears. With most forms of tinnitus, the brain usually adjusts and adapts to the condition, but it can take a while. There are many causes of tinnitus, such as [...]

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