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Research finds Transcendental Meditation may reverse atherosclerosis
by Global Good News staff writer
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5 February 2013
There is ample evidence showing that practising Transcendental Meditation (TM) can lower both systolic and diastolic blood pressure, but does this effect translate into real life differences?
Norman Rosenthal, M.D., posed this question at a medical conference hosted by the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Maryland, USA.
'The answer is yes,' Dr Rosenthal said. In fact, he added, practising Transcendental Meditation may reverse the progress of atherosclerosis, or thickening of the walls of the arteries as they become clogged with plaque (fatty substances).
He showed the results of a randomized controlled study in which two groups of people at risk for cardiovascular disease had ultrasound imaging of their carotid arteries. One group received health education while the other group learned Transcendental Meditation. At the end of the study, the health education group's arteries had thickened. 'This is the natural course of the illness,' Dr Rosenthal explained.
However, the Transcendental Meditation group's results showed decreased carotid artery wall thickness.
Illustrating his talk with a graphic showing the study results, Dr Rosenthal said, 'What you see is that Transcendental Meditation may actually reverse some of the atherosclerosis.'
He described results of other studies on Transcendental Meditation, including decreased progression of the left ventricle mass, and decreased insulin resistance—'both markers of cardiac risk', Dr Rosenthal explained.
In addition, practice of Transcendental Meditation has been linked to decreased hospitalizations, decreased medical costs, and reduced trait anxiety.
About the latter finding, Dr Rosenthal explained that trait anxiety means how stressed and anxious one is in general, not one's anxiety levels at a snapshot in time.
'How much does Transcendental Meditation help?' Dr Rosenthal asked. He pointed to the research findings. 'Well, quite a lot as you see.'
Transcendental Meditation is twice as effective as the next options, which include relaxation methods and placebos.
See related articles:
∙ US: Integrative medicine conference at University of Maryland focuses on healing through meditation
∙ University of Maryland hosts medical conference on benefits of Transcendental Meditation
∙ Conference highlights Transcendental Meditation role in integrative medicine
∙ Medical database holds extensive research on mind-body medicine, meditation
∙ The story behind the bestselling book Transcendence
∙ Studies show Transcendental Meditation can reverse heart disease, reduce blood pressure
Copyright © 2013 Global Good News Service
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