Benefits of Meditation for Health and Wellbeing

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Benefits of Meditation for Health and Wellbeing


In this article, I will explain what meditation is, some of the main benefits to health and wellbeing and then take you through a simple breath meditation to get you started.

What is meditation? The term meditation originally referred to eastern spiritual practices and equates with the word dhyana in Buddhism and Yoga, which means contemplation. In contemporary usage, it covers diverse ways of changing the consciousness, focusing the mind to go beyond the thinking mind and entering a state of deep relaxation.

Meditation has many benefits that can assist us to live happy, productive and fulfilling lives. Stress is almost a modern epidemic, which most of us have been effected by at some time. Meditation induces the relaxation response, which is the opposite of the ‘fight and flight’ or stress response and so is an effective antidote to stress. The relaxation response, decreases oxygen consumption and the respiratory rate, reduces heart rate and blood pressure (in persons with high blood pressure) decreases body metabolism, lessens muscle tension and increases alpha, theta and delta brainwaves which are synonymous with a deep state of relaxation.

Some other benefits of meditation are:-

* Studies have shown that meditators are 5-12 years biologically younger than their age.

* Long term meditators have been found to have 50% less doctors’ visits, 50% less hospitalisations and a lower incidence of illness

* Insomnia sufferers have found up to 75% improvement with regular meditation

* Reduces anxiety, stress and depression

* Muscular tension is reduced which can assist with chronic pain and tension headaches.

* Immune system functioning is enhanced

* Lessens PMT symptoms

* Reduces use of prescription drugs

* Reduces use of alcohol and other substances

* Helpful in weight loss and smoking reduction programs


 Meditation is also relatively simple to learn and takes only 15 to 20 minutes daily to practice and begin to make a significant difference in many areas of your life.

There are local classes in most areas and a wide range of approaches to suit different people’s needs. Guided meditation cd’s can be a useful tool to get started. Brain entrainment programs that increase alpha, theta and delta brainwaves are also an effective aid to meditation. However, all you really need is a quiet place, where you will not be disturbed.  A regular practice time and special place for practice can assist in moving more quickly into meditation. Comfortable clothing is also recommended.

A simple meditation practice is to focus on the breath. Sit comfortably with your spine straight, on a chair, cushion or meditation stool. Close your eyes, take a few deep breaths and feel yourself start to relax. Bring your attention to your breath, allowing it to flow naturally and freely. Breathing through your nose is preferable, unless your nose is blocked. Become aware of your ingoing and outgoing breath, as it enters and leaves your nostrils. Focus on the sensations as your breath touches your skin and moves in and out of your body. Whenever your mind wanders, gently bring your attention back to your breath. I suggest starting with 10 minutes practice and gradually increasing to 20 minutes practice daily.


 May your meditation bring you peace and wellbeing.




Katherine Murray is a qualified counsellor who has practiced meditation for over 20 years.  She writes articles on stress management, meditation and relaxation, mind power and soulful living. For related articles and products visit her website:-

Article from This is a quick10 minute guided meditation to help get you centered. It can be a great exercise to do before other meditations, before yoga sessions, healing sessions or any other type of therapy. You can also do this meditation on your own without the music and guide once you have learned it. The music is original, specially composed for this meditation. For more meditations and more meditation music check out my website http or look for andybramhill on twitter.

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