Many styles of meditation can help reduce stress.

  • In an eight-week study, a meditation style called "mindfulness meditation" reduced the inflammation response caused by stress.
  • Researchers have found that meditation may also improve symptoms of stress-related conditions, including post-traumatic stress disorder and fibromyalgia.
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Health

Controlling Anxiety

Less stress leads to less anxiety.

Regular meditation helps reduce anxiety and anxiety-related mental health issues like social anxiety, phobias and obsessive-compulsive behaviors.

Some types of meditation can improve depression and help you maintain these benefits.

  • Two studies of mindfulness meditation found decreased depression in over 4,600 adults.
  • One study found that participants experienced a long-term decrease in depression.

Self-inquiry and related styles of meditation can help you to understand yourself better.

According to research, some forms of meditation can teach you to recognize thoughts that may be harmful or self-defeating.

Practicing focused-attention meditation may build your attention span.

  • Meditation may reverse patterns in the brain that contribute to mind-wandering, worrying and poor attention.
  • Studies found that four days of practicing meditation can increase attention span.

Improvements in attention and clarity of thinking through meditation may help fight age-related memory loss and dementia.

A review of 12 studies found that meditation increased attention, memory and mental quickness in older participants.

Increasing positive feelings

Studies found that Metta, also known as loving-kindness meditation, increases peoples' compassion toward themselves and others.

The mental discipline developed through meditation may help break dependencies.

Research has shown that meditation may help people learn to redirect their attention and control their emotions and impulses.

According to some studies, meditation can help you relax and control your thoughts. It can reduce the time it takes to fall asleep.

Meditation can reduce your perception of pain. 

Meditating patients showed increased activity in the areas of the brain that control pain. 

Meditation can increase heart function. 

Meditation reduces blood pressure during the time you meditate and also over time. Meditation appears to control blood pressure by relaxing the nerve signals that coordinate heart function.

  • Focused-attention meditation: Concentrates attention on a single object, thought, sound or visualization. It emphasizes ridding your mind of attention and distraction. 
  • Open-monitoring meditation: Encourages broadened awareness of all aspects of your environment, train of thought and sense of self.

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