A new study finds that mind-body interventions, such as yoga and meditation, can reverse gene expression changes causing stress.
For the study, a team of researchers reviews 18 studies with 846 participants concerning effects of numerous mind-body practices, such as yoga, Tai Chi, meditation, and mindfulness, on gene expression.
Having analyzed the received data, the scientists discovered that people practicing mind-body practices have the reduced production of a molecule called nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-kB), which regulated gene expression.
Study leader Ivana Buric of the Centre for Psychology at Coventry University in the United Kingdom says: “Millions of people around the world already enjoy the health benefits of mind-body interventions like yoga or meditation, but what they perhaps don’t realize is that these benefits begin at a molecular level and can change the way our genetic code goes about its business.”
A recent report from the University of Waterloo in Canada shows that just 10 minutes of meditation is enough to overcome stress, anxiety, and boost your focus.
For the study, the researchers asked 82 people who considered themselves as anxious to perform a task on a computer with some interruptions during this task. Those persons who had a short meditation before starting the assignment showed better results compared to those who did not meditate.
Mengran Xu, a researcher and Ph.D. candidate at the university mentioned above, explains: “We also found that meditation practice appears to help anxious people to shift their attention from their own internal worries to the present-moment external world, which enables better focus on a task at hand.”
A new study published in the journal Psychiatry Research suggests that meditation can help the body to respond to various stressful situations.
People with anxiety disorder participated in the study. All of them took an 8-week course of mindfulness meditation where they learned to focus on present moment and accept their difficult thoughts and feelings. In the end of the study, the researchers found that upon the completion of the course the participants demonstrated reduced levels of stress hormone and markers of inflammation during an artificially created stressful event.
Study researcher Dr. Elizabeth A. Hoge, an associate professor of psychiatry at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, DC, says: “Mindfulness meditation training is a relatively inexpensive and low-stigma treatment approach, and these findings strengthen the case that it can improve resilience to stress.”
More information about the study you can find here.