Did you know that research suggests cultivating a mindfulness practice is beneficial for levels of inflammation and stress?
A recent study found that for healthy individuals, a three-day mindfulness retreat, reduced levels of stress and anxiety and improved levels of some key markers of inflammation. The retreat included daily 10 hour periods of meditation and free rest time.
Similarly, an analysis of two randomized control trials, concluded that both a 2 week mobile phone meditation program (20-minute daily sessions with an additional 3–10 minutes of individual practice) or an 8 week mindfulness stress reduction program (a weekly 2.5–3 hour in-person session, a day retreat, and 45-minutes of individual daily practice), may reduce markers of inflammation. Although this finding was only relative to populations at risk for chronic inflammation, middle-aged, older adults and those with increased body mass index.
The Hearty Take
Stress is considered to be a risk factor for inflammation, and meditation decreases levels of stress both physiologically and psychologically. Despite the differences in population, mode and length of mindfulness intervention, these studies suggest that a regular practice of mindfulness may decrease inflammation. Do you have a mindfulness practice? Reach out to your health coach to start one!