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Is Meditation A Key To The Fountain of Youth?

January 5, 2015

Two scientists from the University of Berkley believe that meditation can slow down the aging process. Elizabeth Blackburn and Elissa Epel have studied the effects on the body, specifically genes, since 2000. The pair discovered that when we feel more stressed a part of our DNA, called a telomere, shortens (Blackburn). When telomeres shorten from their regular size, people experience signs of aging faster.

In the scientist’s latest experiment they have been studying the effects of mediation on groups of women who experience high levels of stress due to raising a child with autism. When the women in the study focused their minds on one task rather than multitasking, like meditation teaches, they felt better and actually helped their telomeres grow. As author Jo Marchant states: “[That study] found that those whose minds wandered less – the main aim of mindfulness meditation – had significantly longer telomeres than those whose thoughts ran amok.”

Traditions of meditation have long been seen as therapeutic and medicinal in the Buddhist and Tao cultures. It seems that something that has been along for many years has been overlooked by many in the Western medicine community. In 2012, Blackburn and Epel called on politicians to look at women’s health, specifically women of child-bearing age. The pair believe that helping women with their stress levels could help with preventing stress from crossing generational lines. The suggestion was having businesses cover yoga or meditative weekend trips and incorporate more mind, body and spirit into the work force.

Epel states, “But we are talking about broad socioeconomic policies to buffer the chronic stressors faced by so many.”

Though the idea was shrugged off, the fact still remains that the science backs the statement. When people practiced focusing mind, body and spirit, their health improves.

Sources: tiny version: http://tinyurl.com/mgmhum5

Elizabeth Cox is a holistic advisor certified in Reiki, life coaching, meditation and Chakra balancing.

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