|Meditation: The Power of Silence|
Meditation: The Power of Silence
What Are Some Of The Benefits Of Meditation?
By Conor Hughes
Of all the research that has been done on the brain and the body, there is one activity that seems to have as much benefits as anything else. That activity is called meditation.
There have been some fascinating studies on the positive effects of meditation, many of which have shown that mediation actually creates a neuroplastic change in the brain.
Some of these changes in the brain include an increase of the thickness of the cerebral cortex, particularly in regions associated with attention. In certain studies, scientists have shown meditation increases connections between nerve cells, it increases supporting cells, and it also makes the blood vessels in areas of the brain get bigger. All of these factors can contribute to one's attention span.
While studying certain expert meditators via brain imaging techniques, scientists have also seen that meditators show increased spikes of neuronal activity in the left prefrontal cortex, an area that has long been associated with positive emotions and feelings of well being. In addition, those who had the most activity in this area during meditation had a large increase in immune system functioning.
Meditation has even been shown to be beneficial to people who are not that experienced. In one particular study, scientists took a group of non-meditators and trained them in the practice of Vipassana meditation, which centers on minimizing distractions.
These volunteers were then asked to perform an activity where they needed to pick certain numbers out from a stream of letters. Another group of people who had not undergone the same meditative practice were also asked to perform the task.
When the results were tallied, the meditators were much more successful at identifying the numbers that were within the group of letters. There was also much evidence that they were able to perform this task with a lot less energy than the people who did not meditate.
Meditation has also been shown to be a preventative activity for all types of conditions. The relaxation effects of this wonderful activity can reduce pain and treat high blood pressure, reduce asthma, prevent insomnia, reduce diabetes, and even help with some skin conditions. Other popular uses of meditation have been to cure depression and anxiety disorders.
What's just as significant is that because meditation has actually been shown to change the brain, the wonderful effects that it provides can last a lifetime. For all the things that you can do for yourself then, meditating is definitely one that should be at the top of the list.