This article discusses 12 of the health advantages of meditation.
- It relieves stress.
One of the most common reasons individuals practise meditation is to relieve stress.
According to one review, meditation stands up to its reputation for stress reduction (1Trusted Source).
These side effects can interfere with sleep, cause melancholy and anxiety, raise blood pressure, and contribute to exhaustion and foggy thinking.
A meditation approach known as “mindfulness meditation” was found to lessen the inflammatory response produced by stress in an 8-week research (2).
- It alleviates anxiousness.
Meditation helps lower stress, which leads to less anxiety.
Meditation may reduce anxiety, according to a meta-analysis of over 1,300 adults. Notably, those with the highest levels of stress were most affected by this effect (6Trusted Source).
In addition, one study discovered that 8 weeks of mindfulness meditation reduced anxiety symptoms in persons with generalised anxiety disorder, as well as increased positive self-statements and improved stress reactivity and coping (7Trusted Source).
Furthermore, some evidence suggests that a variety of mindfulness and meditation techniques may help to alleviate anxiety (9Trusted Source).
Yoga, for example, has been demonstrated to assist people lower their anxiety. This is most likely owing to the advantages of both meditation practice and physical exertion (10Trusted Source).
According to one study, employees who used a mindfulness meditation software for 8 weeks had higher levels of well-being, less distress, and less job strain than those in a control group (11Trusted Source).
- Promotes emotional well-being
Some types of meditation can help you have a better self-image and a more optimistic view on life.
Another study discovered that those who conducted a meditation exercise had fewer negative thoughts in reaction to viewing unfavourable images than those who did not (14Trusted Source).
Furthermore, inflammatory substances known as cytokines, which are released in reaction to stress, might have an impact on mood, leading to sadness. According to a review of considerable research, meditation may also alleviate depression by lowering levels of these inflammatory substances (15Trusted Source).
- Increases self-awareness
Some types of meditation may help you gain a better understanding of yourself and grow
Other versions train you to spot potentially damaging or self-defeating beliefs. The idea is that as you become more conscious of your thought patterns, you will be able to steer them toward more productive ways (16Trusted Source, 17Trusted Source, 18Trusted Source).
According to one evaluation of 27 studies, practising tai chi may be connected with increased self-efficacy, which is a person’s conviction in their own capacity or ability to handle obstacles (19Trusted Source).
Another study found that 153 persons who used a mindfulness meditation app for two weeks had less loneliness and more social contact than those in a control group (20Trusted Source).
Additionally, meditation practice may help to develop more creative problem-solving abilities (21Trusted Source).
- Increases attention span
Meditation with focused attention is similar to weight lifting for your attention span. It improves your attention’s strength and endurance.
One study, for example, discovered that those who listened to a meditation CD had better concentration and accuracy while completing a task than those in a control group (22Trusted Source).
A comparable study found that persons who practised meditation on a regular basis did better on a visual test and had a longer attention span than those who had no meditation experience (23Trusted Source).
Furthermore, one study indicated that meditation may even reverse brain processes that contribute to mind-wandering, worrying, and poor focus (24Trusted Source).
Even if you only meditate for a few minutes a day, it will help you. According to one study, meditating for just 13 minutes each day improved attention and memory after 8 weeks (25Trusted Source).