Meditation is one of the oldest practices in the world. We all know its numerous benefits for our body and brain. It greatly impacts our health, affecting almost all of our organs. Of course, you’ll find a lot of content on the internet about the many benefits of meditation on our health. However, one fact that is unknown by many is that meditation can actually change your brain itself. In this article, we will unfold how meditation changes your brain.
Special Matrimony has a number of articles based on the subject of meditation, including how meditation works, the advantages of meditation, and how to meditate. However, this particular article will deal with the matter of how meditation changes your brain. Certain studies have proven that meditation causes a huge number of changes. These changes are not only in your physical health but also in your mental health. Let’s get to the insights into how meditation changes your brain.
What Are the Effects of Meditation on the Brain?
There have been many studies that prove the changes meditation has on your brain. Let’s learn a number of ways how meditation changes your brain.
Your Brain Structure Changes:
One of the most important changes that meditation makes for your brain is that it changes the way your mind reacts to distractions that come its way. Mindfulness meditation is extremely helpful in this regard. When you train your mind to be entirely present in the present and not to think about the future and the past for a while, it changes your brain’s whole structure. Psychiatry Research published a journal that stated meditation’s effects on the brain’s gray matter concentration.
In the study, it was found that eight weeks of mindfulness-based stress reduction training actually affected the thickness of the hippocampus greatly. The cortical thickness of the hippocampus of those people who were involved in this exercise was seen to be greatly increased. The hippocampus is the part of our brain that is mostly responsible for regulating emotions and memory. In addition, this study also found that the amygdala volume decreased. The Amygdala is the part that deals with fear, anxiety, stress etc.
Meditation Preserves your Aging Brain:
As our brains age, they might not be able to do the same things they used to do. This is due to the age factor and is prevalent in older adults. However, a study from UCLA stated the potential age-defying effects of long-term meditation on gray matter atrophy. The observations were that people who had been meditating for an average of twenty years throughout their lives had a higher volume of gray matter. The volume of the gray matter helps preserve the aging brain.
When they compared the volume of the gray matter of the meditators to that of non-meditators, they saw a clear difference despite the older meditators still having some loss of gray matter. It was seen that the effect of meditation on the brain was widespread throughout all brain regions. This proved that the brain as a whole was much better preserved for those who were meditating when compared to that those who weren’t.
It Relieves Stress:
Meditation is one of the best ways through which you can release your stress. Stress has many disadvantages to the brain. It can actually impair brain function greatly. When you know how to handle stress better, it surely saves your brain from impairment. You can manage your stress better through meditation and ultimately save your brain from illnesses. It is seen that long-term stress can even reduce the size of your brain and kill your brain cells.
By meditation, you can stop stress’s harmful effects on your brain. As mentioned before, the harmful effects of stress on your brain are many, and it is by managing your stress that meditation changes your brain. Moreover, it can relieve symptoms of anxiety, and social anxiety, to be exact. Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) type of meditation is known to reduce anxiety symptoms in people. The symptoms of social anxiety are also seen to be reduced with the help of MBSR.
Meditation is actually not quite widely understood by people. This causes there to be a lot of misinformation about the process of meditation and how meditation affects your brain. However, there is nothing else to do rather than try meditation for yourself. You won’t be able to understand the true benefits of meditation before you try to meditate. So, you can start meditating today and learn about all how meditation changes your brain.
Special Matrimony has a lot of content about meditation, as mentioned above. If you are just starting to learn about meditation, our article ” How to Meditate ” might be the right article for you. Before starting, make sure to educate yourself properly on the topic to get the most out of its benefits.