Meditation in 8 Weeks Can Create Huge Change

8 week meditation study 

Cool new 8 week meditation study came out today. I have mentioned before that I have meditated a fair amount in the past. Nothing like Julia Roberts in Eat Pray Love, but enough to know the affect that it can have. Meditation is great. Anyway one of the big things that meditation does is still the mind so that you are much better able to keep your concentration as well as creativity.

Studies tend to be inconclusive on the physical effect to your brain from meditation but a new report seems to show that in just 8 weeks it can make a big difference.

8 Week Meditation Study

An eight-week pro­gram of medita­t­ion led to brain struc­ture changes in peo­ple par­ti­ci­pat­ing in a stu­dy, re­search­ers say. It’s the first time that medita­t­ion, a prac­tice ad­vo­cat­ed by a range of re­li­gious tra­di­tions, has been shown to lead to such changes, ac­cord­ing to the sci­en­tists.

Pre­vi­ous re­search, they said, had re­vealed struc­tur­al dif­fer­ences in the brains of med­i­ta­tors, but could­n’t doc­u­ment that medita­t­ion had ac­tu­ally caused those changes. The re­search­ers re­ported that par­ti­ci­pat­ing in an eight-week medita­t­ion pro­gram ap­peared to make meas­ur­a­ble changes in brain re­gions as­so­ci­at­ed with mem­o­ry, sense of self, em­pa­thy and stress.
“Al­though the prac­tice of medita­t­ion is as­so­ci­at­ed with a sense of peace­ful­ness and phys­i­cal re­laxa­t­ion, prac­ti­tion­ers have long claimed that medita­t­ion al­so pro­vides cog­ni­tive and psy­cho­log­i­cal ben­e­fits that per­sist through­out the day,” said Sara Laz­ar of the Mas­sa­chu­setts Gen­er­al Hos­pi­tal’s Psy­chi­at­ric Neu­roimag­ing Re­search Pro­gram, the stu­dy’s sen­ior au­thor. “This study demon­strates that changes in brain struc­ture may un­der­lie some of these re­ported im­prove­ments and that peo­ple are not just feel­ing bet­ter be­cause they are spend­ing time re­laxing.”

The study is to ap­pear in the Jan. 30 is­sue of the jour­nal Psy­chi­a­try Re­search: Neu­ro­imag­ing.

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