Top seven scientifically-proven benefits of meditation

Ashiyana Team posted on 13 March 2015

For centuries now, sages, seers and seekers have been waxing eloquent about the ancient Indian art of meditation and the physical, mental and spiritual impact it can have on your life. But over the years, science has also joined the list of meditation lovers. Numerous research and studies have only gone on to prove that that the everyday practice of meditation indeed has the power to shower you with an array of benefits that can change your life for the better.

Scientific research has proven that when you meditate, the brain stops processing information as actively as it normally would and there is a marked decrease in beta waves, which are indicators of how much information the brain processes. This shows that your mind and body instantly reach a state of calm and all your worries disappear. Here at Ashiyana Yoga, we pay special emphasis to the practice of meditation along with yoga. From calming your mind, relaxing your body, sharpening your memory to boosting your acumen, here are top seven reasons why you must meditate more regularly!

1. Improves your ability to focus:

The biggest problem we face in this age of distractions is the inability to focus on anything for a long period. Since meditation is a process that requires you to focus intensely and control the wavering mind, you will feel the difference in your focus levels even when you are not meditating. With regular meditation, you will notice that you are much more focussed, engaged and involved in every task you take up. This makes you a more productive person.

2. Reduces your stress levels:

A decrease in anxiety and stress levels is an instant benefit of practicing meditation. The more you meditate, the less frazzled you are. And science has an explanation for this. When you meditate, the section of your brain (the medial prefrontal cortex) that processes information associated with your experiences and causes you to feel fear, anxiety or paranoia, gets weakened and your connection with the brain's reasoning center gets strengthened. This helps you tackle situation in a more rational and calm manner.

3. Boosts your memory:

Always forgetful? Fret not! Studies have proven that meditation could be one of the most effective ways to boost your memory. When you practice mindful meditation regularly, the brainwaves get adjusted to filter out distraction because you need to do that every single time you meditate. So, with time, when you master the art of blocking distractions, you gain the ability to remember things and incorporate them into your brain faster.

4. Increases your gray matter:

This one is a winner! Meditating regularly, according to research, has been linked to having a greater amount of gray matter in the hippocampus and the frontal brain. This can mean, you will end up experiencing more positive and stable emotions, heightened focus and higher cognitive functioning. In simpler words, meditation can make you sharper and smarter! Studies also say that meditation helps in diminishing age-related effects on the gray matter.

5. Helps you enjoy the present:

Meditation teaches you to be present in everything you do. With regular practice, you learn to savour life and focus on what is happening in the present moment without dwelling on the past or worrying about the future. You concentrate on simple acts like breathing, eating and engaging in meaningful relationships as you enjoy the sensation of being in the 'now'. This helps you live a more fulfilled existence, which is the entire basis of meditation.

6. Improves your health:

Studies say that meditation has the power to slow down the heart rate with the help of focussed and deep breathing. This in turns lowers the blood pressure, increasing the flow of blood to the heart in the long run. Your metabolism improves and so does your cardiovascular health. It also helps your body eliminate free radicals, which are known to cause cellular damage. This way, your immune system is also strengthened.

7. Makes you a positive person:

When you practice mindful meditation successfully, you are left feeling calmer, more relaxed and content. This leads to an increase in the levels of serotonin, which is also known as the 'feel-good hormone'. You feel happier and enjoy an improved self-esteem. With regular meditation, you feel a lot more 'zen' towards life and approach situations with a more optimistic and empathetic outlook.

If you want to experience all of the above benefits, then a meditation and yoga holiday in the beautiful Ashiyana Yoga in Goa may do wonders for you!



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