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Conference on addictions highlights 'demonstrable health benefits' of Transcendental Meditation
by Global Good News staff writer
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20 November 2012
After talking about what Transcendental Meditation (TM) does for the brain physiology to combat addiction, Dr Norman Rosenthal focused on what the technique does for the physical body.
Dr Rosenthal, clinical professor of psychiatry at Georgetown University School of Medicine and previously a researcher for over 20 years at the National Institute of Mental Health (US), spoke at a recent conference in Washington, D.C. on Stress, Meditation, Addictions, and Self-Recovery.
He showed the audience two graphics, one of a healthy artery and the other of an artery infiltrated with cholesterol.
Atherosclerosis blocks the arteries and prevents blood from getting to crucial parts of the body, whether the heart or the brain, said Dr Rosenthal. This is a result of a number of things, like poor diet and high blood pressure, 'but much of it is also through stress', he added.
'What I'm wanting to show you is that even when it is something as demonstrable as an artery, you can see the difference between TM and a control treatment. Not only can you see the difference on ultrasound, for example in the carotid artery, the major pipe that feeds the brain—but in addition you can see the outcome in terms of mortality,' said Dr Rosenthal.
He referenced a number of studies which show about a 30 per cent decrease in cardiovascular mortality and 25 per cent decrease in overall mortality amongst Transcendental Meditation practitioners.
(See also a new study, published 13 November 2012 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes, a journal of the American Heart Association, showing that African Americans with heart disease who regularly practised Transcendental Meditation were 48 per cent less likely to have a heart attack, stroke, or die from all causes, compared to controls.)
What is remarkable about Transcendental Meditation, Dr Rosenthal added, is that the effects stay with the subjects long after they have finished their meditation.
'Now we have a technique that helps us not just when we're meditating, but between meditations. . . . The effect [is] sustained. That is the miraculous thing about this meditation.'
See previous articles in this series:
∙ Transcendental Meditation increases brain coherence, quiets 'alarm bells' - helps reduce addiction
∙ Transcendental Meditation increases alpha rhythms, important in recovery from addictions
∙ Expert on Transcendence describes three different kinds of meditation
∙ Meditation long used to treat addictions: Dr Norman Rosenthal
∙ Dr Norman Rosenthal addresses conference on stress, addiction, and Transcendental Meditation
∙ Using Transcendental Meditation in addiction recovery: Dr Norman Rosenthal
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