Just Relax: The Benefits of Meditation

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[tps_header]I’ve been meditating for around six years, but it feels like I’ve been practicing for a lifetime. I follow the Vedic Meditation tradition, which is also known as Transcendental Meditation.[/tps_header]

When we meditate twenty minutes twice per day in this practice, our goal is to take ourselves into a deep state of relaxation, often referred to as a fourth state, or a state of transcendence. Our minds are charmed into this state that is neither sleeping nor dreaming, and consequently, our bodies start erasing deep-rooted stress triggers that have been programmed into our cellular makeup.  These stress triggers can cause the production of a harmful amount of cortisol, which, in turn, can cause inflammation, high blood pressure, faulty metabolisms, and lowered immune systems.

Hormone imbalances also cause an adverse affect on our mental health, creating mood swings, anxiety and depression. When we meditate consistently, we start producing a healthy amount of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which in part, regulates brain function, maintains mood balance, and helps with appetite and sleep. This, in turn, diminishes our stress triggers and response to produce unnecessary amounts of cortisol. And, when cortisol and serotonin levels are balanced, it’s easier to keep depression and anxiety at bay, and our bodies are more calm, relaxed, and focused.

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