Researchers in the US, Spain and France teamed together to conduct a study which found that through meditation, molecular changes in the body occurred to inhibit the production of the proteins that cause inflammation.
To conduct the study, researchers compared the genetic and molecular differences between a group of experienced meditators and a group of untrained meditators who were asked to simply engage in a quiet activity.
After 8 hours, researchers stated that the meditators displayed “a range of genetic and molecular differences including altered levels of gene-regulating machinery and reduce levels of pro-inflammatory genes, which in turn correlated with faster physical recovery from a stressful situation.”
These changes were similar to those experienced when taking anti-inflammatory and analgesic drugs.
The group that engaged in the quiet activity did not display any of these changes, eluding to the fact that being mindful is what specifically makes meditation so beneficial.
“Our genes are quite dynamic in their expression and these results suggest that the calmness of our mind can actually have a potential influence on their expression,” concluded head researcher, Richard J. Davidson.