College of DuPage Nursing Student Kayla Korpan asks, “How much do you know about meditation and its effects on your health?”
Meditation can be used in many different ways such as for concentration, waking up, going to sleep, reducing stress, and looking inward to your feelings about your health status. It is used as both a mind and body workout and centers your thinking to be able to reduce mental and physical stress and anxieties along with clearing your head for positive thoughts to come through.
According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (April 7th, 2020) additional benefits of mediation include:
- To benefit that people who suffer from cancer treatment side effects can find meditation to be useful in relieving anxiety, stress, fatigue, and general mood and sleep. Meditation along with other mind-body modalities can help to also reduce chronic pain and improve quality of life. It can also serve to improve cognitive function.
- To reduce blood pressure. The reduced need for oxygen during meditation due to breathing techniques can help allow for perfusion in your body to slow down. This reduced flow results in lower blood pressure circulation throughout the body.
- Reduces menopausal symptoms: Some of these symptoms include hot flashes, stress, sleep and mood disturbances, and muscle and joint pain. Menopause stress has been known to contribute to memory loss, weight gain, and osteoporosis. Meditation along with yoga and tai chi can reduce the intensity of these symptoms and allow for better self-management throughout menopause.
- Reduce anxiety: The techniques within this practice allows for breathing and distraction methods that can be useful in everyday life or in situations when you may be prone to anxiety. Since meditation is a mind and body practice, it may be easy to do ‘on the go’ as well.
- Finally, meditation may improve the side effects of irritable bowel syndrome(IBS) by minimizing pain and reducing stress which is a trigger of IBS. People who have IBS might also experience lower self-esteem and meditation has been found to improve body image and motivate toward good health.
As meditation and yoga become more popular it is important to think about making a lifestyle change and incorporating this practice into your daily life or maybe suggesting it to others who may have symptoms like the ones above that meditation may relieve.
8 Things to Know About Meditation for Health. (2020). https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/tips/things-to-know-about-meditation-for-health