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Harnessing the Power of Meditation: Benefits for Physical and Mental Health

Meditation is one of the most ancient forms of self-care and its history dates back thousands of years. However, it has become on-trend over the past few decades and people across the globe has started adopting meditation in their daily routine. The term “Meditation” refers to a variety of practices that helps to focus on our mind and body integration, and it has been used since ages to calm the mind, improve physical health, and enhance overall well-being.

The benefits of meditation for physical and mental health are countless. Many people have found meditation quite helpful in their daily lives. Some of the documented benefits of meditation for physical and mental health include reducing stress and anxiety, improving concentration, eradicating sleep problems, reducing weight, improving longevity, lowering cholesterol levels, reducing pain, and so on. With so many mental and physical health benefits, meditation has become quite acceptable all over the world. Let us explore more about this.

Harnessing the Power of Meditation: Benefits for Physical and Mental Health

Power of Meditation For Mental Health

Undoubtedly, meditation has a significant role to play in improving mental health. Some of the major benefits of meditation to our mental health are mentioned below.

Eradicates Sleep Problems and Insomnia: It benefits in reducing symptoms of sleep issues or insomnia. Studies have shown that with daily practice of meditation, they sleep longer and enjoy better than the non-meditators.

A Dutch study cited by UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Magazine has shown that even ten minutes of guided meditation and some other practices every day for two weeks has resulted in improved quality and duration of sleep(1)

Removes Stress-Related Symptoms, Anxiety, and Depression: Meditation also helps in removing stress-related problems, anxiety, depression, and other mental disorders.

A study conducted by the Stanford University School of Medicine has revealed that meditation can reduce stress-related symptoms by 30% (2).

A meta-analysis that included about 1, 300 adults has found that meditation could reduce symptoms of anxiety. Notably, this positive effect was strongest in people with the highest levels of anxiety. (3)

One more study that included 47 individuals with chronic pain has shown that completing an 8-week meditation program has led to significant improvements in anxiety, depression, and pain over one year. (4)

Increases Attention Span and Memory: The attention span and memory get increased by daily practicing meditation.

A study has shown that individuals who listened to a meditation tape experienced increased levels of attention and accuracy while completing a task when compared with people in a control group. (5)

Improves Creativity and Problem-Solving Ability: Meditation also helps in improving your creativity and problem-solving ability.

According to a study conducted in the Netherlands, it was found that mindfulness practices improve problem-solving ability and creativity (6).

Apart from all these, practicing meditation can increase happiness and willpower.

Meditation For Physical Health

Helps In Improving Immune System Function: Meditation helps in improving our immune system. A study conducted by the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2003 has suggested that frequent mindfulness sessions improved the functions of the immune system in meditators. (7)

Good For Women’s Health: A recent study from the University of North Carolina that involved women who suffer from menstruation-related mood disorders found that participants who completed a mindfulness-based stress reduction course had experienced better emotional resilience and pain tolerance (8).

Meditation Helps In Controlling Pain: Meditation can also help in controlling pain and improving your quality of life.

A review of 38 studies has concluded that mindfulness meditation can reduce pain, improve symptoms of depression in people with chronic pain, and help in enhancing the quality of their lives. (9)

A large meta-analysis of studies that included about 3, 500 participants had concluded that meditation resulted in reduced pain. (10)

Meditation Lowers Blood Pressure: One more physical health benefit of meditation is it lowers blood pressure.

A meta-analysis of 12 studies that included nearly 1000 participants has concluded that meditation helped in reducing blood pressure. It was found to be more effective among elderly volunteers and individuals who had higher blood pressure levels.(11)

Some Other Physical Health Benefits Of Meditation: Meditation also helps in muscle relaxation, lowering cholesterol levels, reducing weight, increasing longevity, increasing libido, improving gut health, giving younger skin, improving digestive health, increasing energy, and bringing the endocrine system to function well.

Know The Basics of Harnessing Meditation For Physical and Mental Health

To grab the benefits of meditation and help improve your physical and mental health, you should know the basics, to begin with. Let us explore the basics.

Set Your Mood

One of the most important things in meditation is your stillness, focus, and interest. For this, you need to prepare yourself well by choosing a quiet and comfortable place. This will help you set your mood for meditation. Some individuals prefer ambient sound and some choose soft music to meditate. You should experiment with various settings to meditate and fix the one that suits you to meditate.

Choose The Type Of Meditation

You can try mindfulness meditation or moving meditation.

Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness meditation helps you to become still and zero in on your thoughts and images as they appear to you. It helps in increasing your focus on your awareness of “NOW” or the present moment.

You need to start focusing on a single central point like your breath and then expand to include your emotions, thoughts, and sensations.

You can find a quiet and comfortable place and be aware of your breathing pattern and also focus on the sensation of air moving in and out of your body while you are breathing. Try to feel the way your belly rises and falls as you breathe, and also the air entering your nostrils and leaving your mouth. Watch every thought or image that comes and goes. Don’t hold them back, let them go once you note them and return to your breathing. Try to meditate for at least 20 minutes daily.

Moving Meditation

Sometimes meditating for 20 or 30 minutes with your busy schedule might be hard. However, you can try another form of meditation, that is moving meditation. It is a form of exercise that is a blend of fitness (workout) and meditation. Some of the major moving meditations are:

Walking Meditation: This is one of the best moving meditations. Here, you slow down your walk and then focus on your steps and the movements of your feet and legs.

Yoga: It focuses on movement, posture, and breathing, all of which help you relax and become stress-free.

Tai Chi: This form of meditation includes slow and gentle movements along with deep breathing.

Set A Program

If you have chosen the type of meditation that you want to practice and have set your mood, go for deciding on a meditation schedule and course that suits your lifestyle. Many individuals prefer to choose morning meditation time, while others prefer to practice meditation during the nighttime. You can also choose to meditate daily or on alternate days and accordingly go for your meditation classes to be guided by an experienced instructor.

Set Your Goal

Without setting goals, nothing gets possible in life. The same applies here for meditation. You should have your goal to practice meditation regularly and make it a daily habit. It is okay if you do it for 10 minutes at first and gradually increase the duration.

Tips To Consider While Adding Meditation To Your Routine

  • Do not use meditation to replace conventional care and always consult with your doctor and get yourself medically treated.
  • Consider seeking help from your healthcare provider if you can use complementary health approaches, including meditation.
  • Know about the experience and training of your instructor in the meditation course.

Final Words

Meditation can be practiced by anyone sitting at home via virtual meditation programs or by joining meditation courses under the guidance of an expert meditation coach. Meditating regularly can improve your physical and mental health. The best thing about meditation is that it can be done anywhere and no special equipment is required. So, set your goals for meditating regularly and harness the power of meditation for improving your physical and mental health and also your quality of life.


Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:June 22, 2023

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