If you have ever begun – and stuck with – a program of meditation, you can probably testify to it’s benefits. But, being human, most people want PROOF. Previously, the benefits of meditation were merely products of speculation. But now scientific evidence is singing its praises. From stress reduction and weight loss to increased energy and enhanced sleep, meditation could be your most powerful prescription to date.
1) Reduce Stress
“It’s easiest to meditate in the morning before your day has started, before you’ve checked your e-mail, or done anything,” says Dr. Christopher Vincent, sports physician and CEO of Altus Sports Institute in Santa Monica, CA. If you make it a daily habit, meditating can decrease levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
2) Lose Weight
Meditating for 30 minutes each day reduces stress and, as a result, helps prevent emotional eating, suggests research from UC-San Francisco. Meditation also helps to develop better emotional awareness, so you are more likely to recognize when you are under stress and in danger of reaching for a bag of chips. When you are better able to recognize stress, you are better able to make healthy choices – for instance, going for a walk with the dog.
3) Boost Energy
Taking time each day to detach yourself from distractions can help you fight the feelings of fatigue that are brought on by being overwhelmed by a to-do list. Even just a few minutes of closing your eyes and taking a couple of deep, cleansing breaths will help you to feel more energized and in control.
4) Improve Sleep Quality
A single sleepless night can impair brain function, mess with your eating habits, and screw up your immune system. According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, practicing meditative techniques during the daytime,can improve sleep quality during the night. By regularly practicing meditation, not only will you fall asleep faster, but you will also stay asleep for longer and wake up feeling more rested overall.
5) Boost Immunity
Meditation has the power to seriously boost immune function. A study published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine found that meditation can increase your body’s ability to ward off illness and infection. Taking some extra time each morning to disconnect will help build up your body’s defense.
Taken from an article in Men’s Fitness.