Meditate To Supercharge Immunity
- 1 minute read
- Dr. Jatin Bhide
Meditation doesn’t just help us battle anxiety, it can also improve our immunity.
A 2016 review, published in the ‘Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences’, studied the effects of meditation and mindfulness on the immune system and found that meditation leads to an increased the number of CD-4 cells – the immune system’s helper cells involved in sending signals to other cells, telling them to destroy.
Reduced markers of inflammation, high levels of which are often associated with decreased immune functioning and increased telomerase activity; telomerase helps promote the stability of chromosomes and prevent their deterioration (telomerase deterioration leads to chronic illnesses and premature ageing).
Stress, an inevitable fallout of the modern life and the pandemic, can affect our immunity too.
Says a 2018 research published in ‘OBM Integrative and Complementary Medicine’, “Chronic stress impairs immune system response as well as triggering inflammation.
Negative emotions can also suppress immune function through their tendency to promote telomere shortening and increased NFkB activity (that regulates inflammatory responses and cellular growth).
The stress-reduction and positive effect associated with meditative practices can undo many of the physiological reactions leading to inflammation and reduced immune function brought on by negative emotions and stress.”
Concludes another study in the journal ‘Psychosomatic Medicine’, “(Even) a short program in mindfulness meditation produces demonstrable effects on brain and immune function.
These findings suggest that meditation may change brain and immune function in positive ways.” Time to find your inner Zen!