Science has now caught up to why mindfulness meditation has been around for thousands of years.
Mindfulness is an ancient practice of focusing on the present moment with kind awareness.
Other modalities such as meditation and yoga are practices that help you develop your awareness to the present moment.
Keep reading to discover 10 science-backed psychological and physical benefits of mindfulness meditation.
Mindfulness has been shown to:
1. Improves attention, focus, and learning outcomes
A study found that people who meditated showed improved attention and accuracy while completing tasks compared to those in a control group. (11)
Another study assigned participants to listen to four sessions of a recorded meditation training or an audio book recording.
Both interventions were effective at improving mood but only the meditation training reduced fatigue, anxiety, and significantly improved visuo-spatial processing, working memory, and executive functioning. (3)
2. Increases ability to self-regulate emotions and behaviors
Mindfulness helps individuals become aware of the emotions and engage with them in a different and more productive way.
A review of studies concluded that mindfulness supports various positive psychological effects such as improved behavioral regulation. (4)
3. Decreases work related stress and burn-out while increasing focus and efficacy in doing your job
Participation in a mindfulness-based professional development program resulted in significant improvements in teacher well-being, efficacy, and burnout/time-related stress, compared to teachers in a control group. (1)
4. Reduces feelings of anxiety and stress Reduces anxiety
In a randomized controlled trial, Mindful Based Stress Reduction Training was associated with a significant reduction in anxiety in patients with generalized anxiety disorder. (7)
Additionally, Johns Hopkins University analyzed 47 trials with over 3,500 people. They concluded that mindfulness meditation programs can help improve anxiety. (15)
5. Reduces Implicit Age and Race Bias
A study had participants listen to either a mindfulness recording or a controlled audio and then complete a race and age implicit association test (IATs).
The group who listened to the mindfulness recording showed a significant decrease in implicit race and age bias when compared to the control group. (8)
6. Helps prevent depression from reoccurring
A study compared mindfulness training to antidepressants in the recurrence of depression between 2 groups of patients.
They found no difference in recurrence of depression between either groups suggesting that mindfulness training was as effective as antidepressants in helping to prevent depression recurrence. (9)
7. Reduce Inflammation
In an 8-week study, a meditation style called “mindfulness meditation” reduced the inflammatory response caused by stress. (12)
8. Enhances memory
One study found that meditating for just 13 minutes daily enhanced attention and memory after 8 weeks. (13)
9. May help your sleep better
Researchers found that people who meditated stayed asleep longer and had less severe symptoms of insomnia, compared with those who had an unmedicated control condition. (14)
10. Helps regulate HR and blood pressure
A meta-analysis of 12 studies enrolling nearly 1000 participants found that meditation helped reduce blood pressure. (5)
This was more effective among older volunteers and those who had higher blood pressure prior to the study
Mindfulness helps you become more intentional about how you live your life. It not only improves memory, executive functioning skills, and your ability to focus but also it has immense physiological benefits such as decreasing inflammation in your body, lowering blood pressure and getting a better night's sleep.
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