CAN MEDITATION ENHANCE YOUR HEART HEALTH? KNOW THE TRUTH!
Meditation has lasting benefits on the health of an individual. Researches have proved its effect on maintaining the health of different parts of the body and overall wellbeing. One of the most immediate effects it does is to increase the health of the heart. Let us understand how it works.
Let us first understand what meditation is.
When we meditate, we indulge ourselves in a state of concentration. We release the worries and go into the meditative state where we delve into the present situation. Meditation helps us to shake off our worries and focus on the breathing technique. It helps us to concentrate on the present moment and control unwanted thoughts and emotions. We become relaxed and a sense of calmness expands on our whole being. Psychologically we attain equilibrium. According to the American Heart Association, this is the cause of reduced chances of heart disease and heart failure.
Types of heart disease and the causes
Heart diseases affect the heart and also the blood vessels. The different types of heart ailments may be irregular or fast heart-beat, angina, heart congestion, heart failure, and cardiomyopathy. These diseases are caused mainly because of stress or sedentary lifestyles. Heart disease is the cause of death of twenty-four percent of the global population. Stress in modern times has led to an increase in death due to heart failure.
1. Meditation helps in preventing heart blockage
With regular meditation on the routine, the risk of heart failure and developing heart ailments is averted. Many types of research have been made on the subject and each has been able to conclude on the usefulness of meditation in reducing heart disease.
In meditation, one controls the popping up of unwanted thoughts in the mind and thus helps to keep a check on the worries. The worries are the ultimate cause of stress. When we breathe in a prolonged inhale, exhale fashion, the stress levels lower. This is an essential technique of meditation. Lowering of stress produces less cortisol, which is the hormone released because of stress, and harmful for the heart and whole body. The stress hormones are the ultimate cause of anxieties and promoters of heart diseases and heart blockages.
2. Meditation reduces stress – the cause of heart diseases
Meditation teaches one of the mindfulness techniques. It helps us to control our reactions to stressful situations also. These not only control the quality of life but help reduce the possibilities of putting ourselves in more stress.
Since the 1970s, it has been established through researches that there is a strong relationship between heart diseases and stress factors like depression, anxiety, and violence. Time and again these three factors have proved to be the cause of heart diseases in some form or the other. The impacts are both direct and indirect. To state about the indirect impact, the psychological association of America states that stress induces wrong behaviors like sedentary life, improper diet practice, drug abuse, or increased smoking and drinking. All these lead to the increased level of heart diseases and blockage of the arteries of the heart. However, the stress factor is also directly responsible for heart blockage by increasing the stress hormone, cortisol which is responsible for heart failure. Psychological stress directly impacts the coronary arteries. It hampers the functions of platelets. Stress makes the platelets reactive and produces the platelet factor 4 and beta-thromboglobulin which are responsible for heart ailments. It even causes necrosis. In women, it can lead to the degeneration of the function of the ovaries which can cause further stress and eventually lead to heart diseases.
Chronic stress can induce the diseases of the coronary artery while strong stress can lead to vasoconstriction of the coronaries. It can also disrupt the function of the platelets and bring in the wrong function of the endothelial parts of the body. These will lead to sudden and irrevocable cardiac failure.
3. Meditation controls the Heart Variability Rate
Studies also show that meditation increases the HRV or the Heart Rate Variability. It is the ability of the heart to adapt to the variable heartbeats which may be caused due to stress or other ailments in the body. HRV may also be the effect of the change of climate or the altitude of the land. As we move up the landscape to the higher altitude, we have difficulty in breathing and the heart rate variability increases. Meditation helps to easily adapt to such situations and help in keeping the pace of the heart right.
Meditation is the art and science of getting mindful and focussing on the present state of the mind. The technique helps to check worries and release stress from the mind. Stress is the cause of heart failure along with many other diseases. Directly and indirectly, it blocks the arteries of the heart. Directly it increases the stress hormone and causes heart failure. Indirectly it leads to a sedentary lifestyle which is the cause of heart ailments. Meditation not only helps to check these but also increases the HRV or the Heart Rate Variability and helps the heart to pace up with varied heartbeats effectively. Thus meditation increases the health of the heart in a number of ways.
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