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New research indicates benefits of Maharishi Ayur-Veda for cardiovascular disease: Methods and results
by Global Good News staff writer

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8 August 2009

Dr Paul Morehead described the methods and results of his study on Maharishi Ayur-Veda and cardiovascular health. The research of Dr Morehead, who recently received his PhD from Maharishi University of Management (M.U.M.), USA, indicates promising results for cardiovascular health through Maharishi Ayur-Veda.

Please also see Part I of this article, the beginning of Dr Morehead's report on 1 August 2009, about his doctoral dissertation study, titled 'Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease in Maharishi Ayur-Veda Participants: A Cross-Sectional Study of Carotid Atherosclerosis'.

Dr Morehead described his study as one of cross-sectional design—examining samples from two groups from one point in time. The first group was comprised of 74 Maharishi Ayur-Veda practitioners, and the second was a control group of non-practitioners. All subjects were required to be greater than 21 years of age, male or female, and of any ethnicity; subjects of the Maharishi Ayur-Veda group were required to have been practicing the Transcendental Meditation or Transcendental Meditation Sidhi Programme for over five years.

These groups were tested for four main risk factors of cardiovascular disease: carotid artery blockage, blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglycerides. Carotid artery blockage, the primary outcome of the experiment, was measured using 'modified duplex ultrasound'—that is, two types of ultrasound. One type was used to visually identify the artery's structure and another type—the Doppler ultrasound—measured the sound of blood flowing through the artery. Secondary outcomes measured in the experiment were total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol ('bad cholesterol'), HDL cholesterol ('good cholesterol'), triglycerides, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

Dr Morehead went on to list the control variables used in his study. Control variables, he explained, are 'factors which are taken out of the picture as much as possible, so as to best identify whether it is Maharishi Ayur-Veda which leads to a difference in cardiovascular disease risks'. Such variables, he stated, were age, gender, body-mass index, family history of cardiovascular disease, active smoking, and exercise. Control variables for both groups were as follows:

• The Maharishi Ayur-Veda group age was average 55 years old, and the control group was 49 years old: a significant difference, and therefore controlled so as not to affect the study outcomes.
• Gender was similar between the groups: not a significant difference.
• Body mass index (BMI) was 22.8 for the Maharishi Ayur-Veda group and 28.4 for the control: a significant difference.
• 82 per cent of the Maharishi Ayur-Veda group had a family history of heart disease, while 75 percent of the control group had family history: not a significant difference.
• There were zero smokers in the Maharishi Ayur-Veda group and 17 per cent in the control group: a significant difference.
• The Maharishi Ayur-Veda group exercised an average of 3.46 hours per week, while the control group averaged 0.57 hours: a significant difference.

He also added that Ayur-Veda subjects had been practising Transcendental Meditation for an average of 27 years, 70 per cent had been regularly practising neurorespiratory techniques and 50 per cent neuromuscular integration techniques, and 50 per cent took Amrit Kalash.*

Dr Morehead went on to present the following main results for the study, regarding the primary indicators of cardiovascular disease:

• There was a significant difference in levels of carotid artery blockage between the two groups: among Maharishi Ayur-Veda practitioners there was zero blockage, and among the control group there was some blockage.
• Total cholesterol and 'bad cholesterol' levels were the same in both groups, while 'good cholesterol' levels were higher in the Maharishi Ayur-Veda group.
• Systolic blood pressure was significantly different between the two groups, at 118 for Ayur-Veda practitioners and 129 for the control group. Diastolic blood pressure was not significantly different between groups.
• There was no significant difference in triglycerides.

'So we see here that the main outcome of this study was a significant difference in carotid blockage, good cholesterol, and systolic blood pressure between the two groups,' stated Dr Morehead in summary.

Finally, for his dissertation Dr Morehead also measured the prevalence of additional diseases within the two groups:

• In the Maharishi Ayur-Veda group, only a small number of people had risk factors or diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, and obesity.
• In the control group, many more subjects suffered from risk factors or illnesses, including heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, and diabetes.

'We can see clearly from these results that the long-term practice of Maharishi Ayur-Veda, including the Transcendental Meditation and Transcendental Meditation Sidhi Programmes, leads to a considerable advantage in cardiovascular health, as measured by blood pressure, cholesterol, and blockage of the carotid artery,' concluded Dr Morehead. In addition, he reiterated the absence of disease among Maharishi Ayur-Veda practitioners, in contrast with the prevalence among the control group.

* Maharishi Amrit Kalash, a special herbal preparation designed to increase vitality and inner strength and support the health of mind, brain, and nerves, which is also an effective antioxidant.

© Copyright 2009 Global Good News®

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