Meditation and relaxation are essentially the same thing. They both require you to let go and simply be. Science shows that meditation and relaxation have a multitude of health benefits. And since they’re both free, can be performed anywhere and easy to do, why not include relaxation and meditation in your daily life? For the sake of the article, I’ll be referring to the same practice when talking about meditation and relaxation.
Below Are 5 Ways Meditation and Relaxation Improves Your Health
Meditation Reduces Acne
According to WebMD, one of the leading causes of acne is stress. Stress causes an increase in the natural oils of the body. Sebum is an oily substance that mixes with your dead skin cells and bacteria. And when it mixes, it often clogs your pores.
The higher a person’s levels of stress are, the more sebum they produce. Stress is one of the leading causes of acne flare ups. And guess what? Meditation and relaxation cures stress. So through the process of meditation, you reduce stress and therefore reduce sebum production in the body. When relaxation is practiced over the course of a few weeks, results are astounding. (Source 1)
Meditation Curbs Appetite
An article on Science Daily showed stress is also one of the leading causes of emotional eating. People will oftentimes use food to cope with a stressful situation. Appetite is especially stimulated when a person skips a meal. The skipping of the meal illicit a specific type of stress in the brain that kicks the appetite of a person into overdrive. This will often times lead to overeating. But meditation can help to cure the insatiable hunger caused by stress. Also, it’s a healthy way to cope, leading a person to a more emotionally balanced life. (Source 2)
Meditation Helps You Stay Happy
An article posted on Nature.com referred to a study conducted and published on the website, adds to previous beliefs about stress being responsible for the death of neurons in the brain. Also, stress actually stops the production of new brain cells in a part of the brain called the hippocampus. It stops the act of Neurogenesis to take place. Neurogenesis it turns out it is required to help create a healthy stress response within the brain.
The study also showed that long term stress leads to depression. And once again, stress can be reduced through the practice of meditation. Once your stress levels are reduced, it’s easier to stay happy. You’ll be less stressed and it’s possible to eliminate depressive moods altogether. (Source 3)
Meditation Lowers Risk of Stroke
So we know that meditation reduces stress. And most of us are aware stress is one of the leading causes of stroke. But did you know that reducing stress can reduce your chance of having a stroke by as much as 25%. A new study in Great Britain, based the conclusions on a 7-year study including more than 20,000 people.
The study showed that people who were more grounded and could cope better with stressful situations had a 24% lower chance of stroke. Dr. Paul Surtees, researcher during the study said, “Our findings suggest that people who are able to adapt more rapidly to stressful circumstances in their lives had a lower risk of stroke.” (Source 4)
People who meditate have been shown to be more accepting of stressful situations. That was proven in another study performed by Norman Farb on a small group of people. The study was on the effects of mindfulness and sadness. (Source 5)
Relaxation Boosts Memory
A study performed on mice showed stress will also impair the prefrontal cortex. It’s the part of the brain responsible for creativity and abstract thought. The prefrontal cortex also involves memory and cognitive functions. Stress has been shown to limit an individual’s ability to use this part of the brain. Through daily meditation, stress can be reduced and a person can rely more upon the creative faculties of their brain.
The benefits of meditation are just being discovered on a scientific level. Spiritualist and Buddhist have understood the benefits of relaxation and meditation for hundreds of years. Now that you have this knowledge, will you include mindfulness, meditation and relaxation in your daily life?