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Did You Know? Mindfulness and Meditation Benefits Your Physical Health

Author

Will

Posted on Apr 14, 2022

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Mindfulness and meditation. They’re the buzzwords of the year, maybe even the decade. But meditation is still a vastly underestimated tool for relieving stress, anxiety, depression, blood pressure issues, and pain.

However, they are certainly not buzzwords in our yoga community!

Here at MyYogaTeacher, we believe meditation is an integral part of a yoga practice. A traditional, ancient form of holistic medicine that is scientifically proven to work. That’s why some form of meditation is included in most every yoga class you’ll take with us. 

As a matter of fact, mindfulness meditation is a form of meditation that involves teaching your brain and body to slow down, be present, and let go of negative thoughts and tension. So the two words, while often used interchangeably, are different, but the practice of mindfulness and meditation has a significantly positive impact on your physical health.

Let’s talk about how meditation benefits your physical health. (Hint: it has to do with your mental and emotional health too!)

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First, what meditation isn’t

There is a common misconception that meditation is religious in nature. Many don’t feel comfortable meditating or even considering meditation because they think it might violate their belief system.

We’re here to set the record straight.

Meditation has been and continues to be practiced in virtually every religion, but it isn’t, itself, a religion at all. Meditation and mindfulness is more about upgrading your mind and enriching your life.

You can meditate without it interfering with your religious beliefs or practices if you so choose, or you can use it as tool to enhance your spirituality within your religious beliefs.

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How does meditation benefit your physical health?

Meditation and mindfulness aren’t just for your mind. Your physical health is affected by your mental and emotional state, as is experienced by high cortisol levels in people who experience a lot of stress. 

High cortisol levels cause inflammation in the body, which causes other problems.

All due to prolonged exposure to stress.

Let’s talk about all the ways meditation improves physical health.

Meditation controls anxiety

Of course, we’re going to start with something that so many people suffer from – anxiety.

One of the reasons yoga improves anxiety symptoms is because of the meditative aspect of it. Meditation has been scientifically proven to not only reduce the symptoms of anxiety but also the instances of anxiety occurring.

Job-related stress, economic changes, family and life stress, all can create generalized anxiety. A regular practice of mindfulness and meditation lowers cortisol levels, adrenaline levels, and balances hormones that are disrupted by anxiety.

This means the physiological effects of reduced anxiety because of meditation are less pain in tense muscles, better digestion, reduced inflammation in the body, clearer mind, better focus, and even better sleep!

Meditation improves age-related memory loss

Did you know that meditation improves memory, focus, and concentration? A regular meditation and mindfulness practice literally improves the physiological function of your brain!

Studies have shown that seniors who practice meditation have significant improvements in cognitive function, and the areas of the brain that lose elasticity (which is part of what causes dementia) improve.

Certain types of meditation are particularly helpful for age-related memory loss, including candle-gazing meditation and Krya.

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Meditation enhances self-awareness

Self-awareness may seem like a mental or emotional aspect of meditation to you. However, it’s what comes with self-awareness that’s physical.

Meditation teaches you to recognize thoughts that may be harmful to you physically, mentally, or emotionally. Many who practice meditation and mindfulness regularly eat less (or only when they’re hungry), eat more nutritious foods, are more likely to exercise, and refrain from doing things that will cause them harm.

So enhanced self-awareness manifests itself physically just as much as it does mentally and/or emotionally.

Different forms of meditation, such as self-inquiry meditation, help practitioners develop a better understanding of themselves, their interactions and connectedness with others, and what they truly want, need, or desire. 

Meditation helps with addictions

We mentioned above how meditation and mindfulness help you be more aware of your eating habits. For some, this may mean beating a food addiction.

Others may struggle with alcohol, drugs, or other types of addictions. Research shows that meditation helps addicts manage and even avoid triggers and unwanted impulses, thereby reducing relapse and the psychological torment that often accompanies addiction.

One form of mindfulness and meditation that helps with this is transcendental meditation, which studies have shown has been particularly effective for addicts and recovering addicts.

It should go without saying that eliminating an unhealthy addiction, whether it’s drugs, alcohol, food, or something else, positively impacts your physical health in many ways!

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Are you interested in beginning a meditation practice but don’t know where to start? Maybe you are tired of feeling exhausted, frustrated, or anxious. Maybe you have a medical condition such as high blood pressure or diabetes, both of which meditation can be an effective tool to help with.

At MyYogaTeacher, we have 70+ expert yoga instructors, many who specialize in yoga therapy, meditation, or even have masters degrees in those same areas. They are experienced, kind, and truly care about your well being!

We’d love to have you join our community and discover how meditation and mindfulness positively impacts your life!

Not a MyYogaTeacher member? Whether you’re interested in teaching yoga, starting yoga, or growing in your yoga journey, MyYogaTeacher is a great place to do it!

When you sign up for a 1:1 membership with us you get:

  • 102 expert, highly qualified yoga instructors to choose from
  • The ability to switch instructors or take classes with only your child’s faves

  • Access to unlimited group classes, taught live

  • Personalized instruction and work out, diet, and lifestyle plans

  • To be a member of a HUGE community of happy yogis from around the world

  • Yoga teachers who become friends, who truly care about your child!

If you haven’t checked us out already, grab two free 1:1 sessions with your 2-week free trial here!







 

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