We tend to think of meditation as a way of reducing stress and to help us relax. Meditation certainly has that effect, but it does much more than that. The research reviewed investigated if meditation may be able to reduce inflammation and alter immune expression (Black DS, et al. 2012). Caregivers who took care of a family member with dementia, participated in the study. They were divided into groups and were given either relaxing music to listen to for 12 minutes daily for 8 weeks or were asked to meditate for 12 minutes daily. Blood samples were taken at the start of the study and at a follow up 8 weeks later. They were tested for the pro-inflammatory substance NF-kappa Beta and the antiviral transcription pathways Interferon Response Factors (IRFs). The results were very interesting and the researchers concluded that meditation may reduce stress induced elevation of the pro-inflammatory substance NF-kappa Beta and also increase lowered IRFs antiviral response. Meditating regularly is well worth the time.
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