Transcendental Meditation and better health
For your health: The twice-daily practice of the TM technique is the single most powerful preventive and healing recommendation available. During the 20 minute TM practice the body goes into a state of deep rest in which there is more orderly brain functioning and increased mental awareness. This is allowing mind and body to access the source of nature’s intelligence deep within; it enlivens the body’s inner intelligence, supporting its innate ability to heal itself.
Regular TM practice helps the body throw off deep stress and fatigue, improves mental functioning and is an ideal preparation for the activity of the day. It is a very powerful means to develop the full health potential of the physiology.
Many doctors and health professionals practise Transcendental Meditation themselves and recommend it to their patients. You can read questions and answers with doctors, in relation to a number of medical conditions, below. Randomised controlled trials directly comparing Transcendental Meditation with other programmes have found that it is more effective in bringing about sustained long-term relaxation and reduction of stress hormones in daily life, and in promoting a healthy long life.
What’s the best thing I can do for my health?
The latest health trends constantly offer us the newest solution to health. But there is a very simple key to all round well-being: allow the inner intelligence of the body to do what it can re-establish balance and normal good health. Rest allows the body’s natural healing mechanisms to function fully. When we do not get sufficiently deep rest, the body tends to function poorly and stress-related problems occur. It has been estimated that 80% of all doctor visits are for stress-related problems. Transcendental Meditation provides a state of profound rest that naturally dissolves even deeply rooted stress and fatigue, and thus helps to rejuvenate the body and enhance brain functioning.
Beyond relaxing – from better health to personal growth
Transcendental Meditation is relaxing, but it is much more. It is a unique combination of deep relaxation along with expanded awareness. This state of “restful alertness” sets Transcendental Meditation apart from other relaxation techniques and tension relieving activities like exercise or music. After meditation, TM meditators report they feel calm, clear and energetic, much like you feel on your best days. TM can help create that experience throughout the day, every day. Transcendental Meditation can be useful in managing a wide range of conditions which are commonly stress-related, such as migraine, ulcers, high blood pressure, angina, asthma, anxiety, insomnia, and excessive use of alcohol, cigarettes, and non-prescribed drugs. With daily practise of Transcendental Meditation, vibrant health develops in the mind, body and emotions, leading to greater enjoyment, happiness and success.
A natural solution to anxiety and depression
Both anxiety and depression are extremely common, yet a simple solution may be at hand. For some, stressful or discouraging events produce short-lived symptoms; but for others, anxiety and depression can be on-going and relentless, making normal daily life impossible. Dealing with anxiety and depression can be a long-term challenge and even a vicious circle, where the less we are able to cope, the more anxious or depressed we become. TM provides a natural solution to help you overcome anxiety and depression.
Twice as effective as other techniques
What distinguishes TM is its holistic effect. It is like watering the root of a plant instead of just tending the leaves. Scientific research has shown that the deep relaxation gained from Transcendental Meditation settles mind and body so that the nervous reaction to stress is lessened. Subsequently, the anxiety and depression are reduced, enabling you to manage and overcome many of the symptoms that you may experience, including panic attacks, social anxiety and phobias.
An analysis of all 146 published studies on relaxation and anxiety (see chart) showed that Transcendental Meditation was twice as effective in reducing anxiety as other techniques including the relaxation response, concentration meditation, systematic muscular relaxation, and muscle biofeedback.
Interestingly, the longer the people in these studies had been practising TM, the greater was the decrease in anxiety.
Always take medical advice
If you feel that anxiety or depression is seriously disrupting your life, you should consult your GP. Transcendental Meditation is complementary to any medical approaches to managing anxiety and depression. However you should never substitute practising TM for proper medical advice, and …
- Always take the advice of your doctor.
- Never decrease any medication unless advised by your doctor to do so.
Norman Rosenthal, MD, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Georgetown University Medical School, author of “Transcendence”
“Anxiety in all its various forms will generally respond well to Transcendental Meditation. Even in those people already receiving treatment for anxiety, adding TM to the mix often means that their drug levels can be lowered as their response improves.”
A doctor’s experience, Dr Michael Musgrave
“In my years as a GP I found TM to be a dignified form of self help for my patients, who often reported benefits such as reduced anxiety, less sense of stress, better sleep, improved well-being. It is completely safe and for many people makes a good alternative to time consuming therapies and is likely to reduce the need for medication, and this is consistent with the research findings.”
“Meditation Saved Me from Suicide”, (2 mins)- Luke Jensen, War Veteran
Research on the TM technique has found that it produces many wellness benefits, including:
- greater inner calm throughout the day
- reduced cortisol (known as the “stress hormone”)
- normalized blood pressure
- lower risk of heart attack and stroke
- reduced anxiety and depression
- improved learning ability and memory
- reduced insomnia
Transcending = Deep Rest
When the mind transcends the finest impulse of thought, it comes into a state of complete inner silence. This happens in a completely natural and effortless way. We can’t try to make the mind silent, nor do we have to. With the right technique, the mind will go there by itself.
Mind and body go together, and where one goes the other has to follow. During this deep state of mental rest the body will also come into a deep state of physical relaxation. This state of rest has been measured to be significantly deeper than ordinary relaxation or eyes closed rest, often even deeper than the rest during sleep.
This deep rest can easily be objectively measured. This graph shows the average results in effect size of no less than 30 studies, performed around the world over 15 years. It shows that during TM practice respiratory rate, a measure of relaxation, goes down far more than during eyes closed rest. Other measures of relaxation, like basal skin conductance and the stress hormone plasma lactate, show similar decreases that indicate a far deeper rest than ordinary relaxation.
This deep rest activates the inner healing power in our own bodies. Relaxation means relaxing tensions. The body has a completely natural way to remove tensions that it accumulates. This is what we happens during sleep but the rest during sleep doesn’t always go deep enough to remove more deeply-rooted, traumatic stresses. Transcending gives a level of rest that can help dissolve those deeper rooted stresses.
Gary P Kaplan, associate professor of neurology at New York University School of Medicine
“If you have a technique that you practise 20 minutes twice a day, a technique that allows you to be dynamic in your activity and yet not to accumulate the stress that wreaks havoc on your health, then you have a key to better health.”
Official recognition and support
The National Institutes of Health in the USA have to date granted over $24 million to study the effect of Transcendental Meditation for the prevention and treatment of heart disease, hypertension, and stroke.
This research has so far reported:
- Reduced risk factors for hypertension, diabetes, and obesity (American Medical Association’s Archives of Internal Medicine)
- Increased lifespan (American Journal of Cardiology)
- Reduced thickening of coronary arteries (American Heart Association’s Stroke)
- Reduced blood pressure in comparison with other procedures (Ethnicity & Disease)
- Reduced heart failure (Ethnicity & Disease)
- Reduced use of hypertensive medication (American Journal of Hypertension)
- Improved brain response to stress and pain (NeuroReport)
Thanks for sharing 🙂