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New findings on Transcendental Meditation and PTSD, gene expression, and HIV patients
by Global Good News staff writer
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12 July 2013
As a powerful stress-reducing technique, Transcendental Meditation is often found to produce results in very diverse areas of life. Three different areas of recent research have shown effects of the technique on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), gene expression, and health and quality of life in HIV-positive patients.
At a Veterans Administration (VA) hospital in Utah in the USA, a veteran who was unable to sleep learned Transcendental Meditation. He had been averaging about two hours of sleep per night and, as would be expected, his stress levels were very high.
His Transcendental Meditation instructor explained that the very night after learning Transcendental Meditation, the veteran slept four hours. The following night he slept five hours, and the next night six.
He felt immediate relief from the overpowering stress of PTSD—a result seen in many combat veterans who learn Transcendental Meditation, which has been documented in research studies investigating the effect of the technique on PTSD.
In a different field of research, a PhD student at Maharishi University of Management in Iowa, USA, is finding that gene expression is different in people who practise Transcendental Meditation. The study is being supervised by experienced researchers, and so far has found that the meditation practice seems to affect both which genes are expressed and which are repressed.
This process is important because gene expression and regulation create the structure and function of the body and are responsible for the ability to adapt. They may also allow for evolutionary change, since control over how genes are expressed can dramatically change the ultimate function of genes and cells.
Understanding more about Transcendental Meditation and gene expression, commented Dr Bevan Morris, President of Maharishi University of Management, may give us more insight into how the technique is able to dramatically improve so many areas of health.
For example, in a study conducted at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, researchers looked at the effects of practising Transcendental Meditation on HIV-positive patients. The six-month study, which was recently published in the journal AIDS Care: Psychological and Socio-medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV, found that the TM group had significant improvements in vitality, pain, general mental health, and immune function.
See related article: Research shows substantial effects of Transcendental Meditation in people under severe stress
Copyright © 2013 Global Good News Service
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