The Surprising Science Behind Why Transcendental Meditation Works
Meditation has been around for thousands of years, but it’s only recently that science has begun to uncover the true benefits of this ancient practice. While there are many different types of meditation, one that has gained popularity in recent years is Transcendental Meditation (TM). But what makes this type of meditation so effective, and what does science have to say about it?
What is Transcendental Meditation?
Transcendental Meditation is a technique that was developed by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in the 1950s. It involves sitting comfortably with your eyes closed, and repeating a mantra (a sound or word) silently to yourself. The mantra is chosen specifically for you by a trained TM teacher, and is meant to be a vehicle to help you reach a state of deep relaxation and inner peace.
Why does it work?
At its core, Transcendental Meditation works by calming the mind and reducing stress. But there’s more to it than just that. Here are some of the surprising ways that TM can benefit your mind and body:
1. It reduces cortisol levels
Cortisol is a hormone that is produced by the adrenal gland in response to stress. When cortisol levels are high, it can lead to a number of negative health effects, including weight gain, decreased immune function, and increased risk of heart disease. Studies have shown that practicing Transcendental Meditation can reduce cortisol levels, leading to a decrease in stress and an improvement in overall health.
2. It improves brain function
Research has shown that practicing Transcendental Meditation can lead to changes in brain function that are associated with improved cognitive performance. Specifically, it can increase activity in the prefrontal cortex, which is the part of the brain responsible for decision-making, planning, and attention.
3. It can lower blood pressure
High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease, and can be caused by a number of factors, including stress. Studies have shown that practicing Transcendental Meditation can lead to a decrease in blood pressure, which can help reduce the risk of heart disease.
4. It can improve sleep
Sleep is essential for our physical and mental health, but many people struggle with getting enough sleep or getting good quality sleep. Research has shown that practicing Transcendental Meditation can lead to improvements in sleep quality and duration.
5. It can reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression
Anxiety and depression are two of the most common mental health issues in the world, and can have a significant impact on a person’s quality of life. Studies have shown that practicing Transcendental Meditation can lead to a reduction in symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Transcendental Meditation is a simple yet powerful technique that can have a profound impact on your mind and body. By reducing stress, improving brain function, lowering blood pressure, improving sleep, and reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression, it can help you lead a happier, healthier life. If you’re interested in trying TM, it’s important to find a trained teacher who can guide you through the process and help you choose a mantra that’s right for you. With regular practice, you may be surprised at just how beneficial this ancient practice can be.