Research shows that meditation has powerful effects on the brain

ORLANDO, FLA. (Ivanhoe Newswire) – Scientists estimate that between 200 and 500 million people meditate around the world. And over 14% of Americans have meditated at least once.

This popular practice is known to improve focus and make you feel better, but research also shows that it has powerful effects on the brain.

It can help you focus, stay calm and now research shows that meditation can improve your brain function as well.

A UCLA study found that people who meditated for an average of 20 years had more gray matter in their brains.

Gray matter helps you control movements, retain memories, regulate emotions, etc. A Johns Hopkins review found that mindfulness meditation helped reduce symptoms of depression, anxiety, and pain.

And a team of Harvard researchers found that eight weeks of mindfulness meditation actually increased cortical thickness in regions of the brain, including the hippocampus, an area that governs learning and memory.

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Anyone can meditate. If you are new to the practice, try to set aside five to ten minutes each day. Find a place where you feel calm. Sit down and focus on your body and your breathing. If your mind is wandering, gently bring it back.

Popular apps like Headspace, Calm, and Buddhify are good resources, and many offer guided meditation options. Remember, this simple practice could have a big impact on your brain.

Other studies have shown that meditation can reduce the risk of being hospitalized for coronary heart disease by 87%. And it can relieve insomnia symptoms 75% of the time.


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Contributors to this report include: Julie Marks, producer; Robert Walko, videographer and editor. To receive a free weekly email about Ivanhoe’s Smart Living, subscribe to: Awareness Month: Secret Signs of Thyroid Disease

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