Sunday, November 30, 2008

Meditation may protect your brain

Many forms of exercise incorporate the qualities of meditation. Focusing on your breathing as you lift weights is meditation in action. As is feeling the cool breeze against your body or the sand under your feet as you run along the beach. Well with this in mind it turns out that meditation may even affect your brain.

For thousands of years, Buddhist meditators have claimed that the simple act of sitting down and following their breath while letting go of intrusive thoughts can free one from the entanglements of neurotic suffering.

Now, scientists are using cutting-edge scanning technology to watch the meditating mind at work. They are finding that regular meditation has a measurable effect on a variety of brain structures related to attention — an example of what is known as neuroplasticity, where the brain physically changes in response to an intentional exercise.

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