The Benefits of Meditation
With meditation you can reduce stress and pain, be happier, more focused, increase your memory, and generally improve your quality of life.

Meditation and mindfulness can improve your quality of life in many different ways.

The following studies were published in 2016. It is clear that meditation and mindulness practices greatly improved the quality of life of the participants.

Meditation helps with learning and memory.

"A one-semester mindfulness meditation course was able to improve learning effectiveness and both attention and memory aspects of cognitive performance among Taiwanese university students.

Effective learning and sustained attention and memory are important requirements for success and well-being in academic contexts. Incorporating a mindfulness meditation course in the curriculum may be a feasible approach to improve learning effectiveness and cognition performance in university students."
Read the original study here.

Mindfulness reduced anxiety and stress in cancer survivors.

"252 distressed Stage I-III breast cancer survivors were randomized into either a group that practiced Mindfulness-based cancer recovery (MBCR) or supportive expressive group therapy (SET).

Immediately following the intervention, women in MBCR reported greater reduction in mood disturbance (primarily fatigue, anxiety and confusion) and stress symptoms including tension, sympathetic arousal and cognitive symptoms than those in SET.

They also reported increased emotional and functional quality of life, emotional, affective and positive social support, spirituality (feelings of peace and meaning in life) and post-traumatic growth (appreciation for life and ability to see new possibilities) relative to those in SET, who also improved to a lesser degree on many outcomes."
Read the original study here.

Long-term mindfulness training (LTM) is associated with reliable differences in resting respiration rate.

"Respiration rate is known to correlate with aspects of psychological well-being, and attention to respiration is a central component of mindfulness meditation training. Both traditional contemplative systems and recent empirical evidence support an association between formal mindfulness practice and decreased respiration rate

On average, LTMs showed slower baseline respiration rate (RR) than Controls. Among LTMs, greater practice experience was associated with slower RR, independently of age and gender."
Read the original study here.

Effects of a Meditation Program on Nurses' Power and Quality of Life.

"This study evaluated the effects of meditation programs on nurses' power and quality of life. In this study, Barrett's power theory derived from Rogers' unitary human being science was used as a theoretical framework. A randomized controlled design with 50 recruited and randomly allocated participants was used.

The results demonstrated that the eight-week meditation program significantly improved nurses' power and quality of life. These results suggest that meditation has positive effects on power and quality of life."
Read the original study here.

Effects of Buddhist walking meditation on glycemic control and vascular function in patients with type 2 diabetes.

"The objective of this study was to investigate and compare the effects of Buddhist walking meditation (WM) and traditional walking on glycemic control and vascular function in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

After 12 weeks, maximal oxygen consumption increased and fasting blood glucose level decreased significantly in both groups. Significant decrease in HbA1c and both systolic and diastolic blood pressure were observed only in the WM group. Flow-mediated dilatation increased significantly in both exercise groups but arterial stiffness was improved only in the WM group. Blood cortisol level was reduced only in the WM group.

It was concluded that Buddhist walking meditation exercise produced a multitude of favorable effects, often superior to traditional walking program, in patients with type 2 diabetes."
Read the original study here.

Meditation programs for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder: Aggregate findings from a multi-site evaluation.

"Interest in meditation to manage posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms is increasing. Few studies have examined the effectiveness of meditation programs offered to Veterans within Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) mental health services. The current study addresses this gap using data from a multisite VA demonstration project.

It was concluded that VA-sponsored meditation programs show promise for reducing PTSD severity in Veterans receiving mental health services."
Read the original study here.

Next: How to Meditate

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