Meditation And Mental Health
Meditation is a simple practice that anyone can do. There are different types of meditation like mindfulness, visualisation techniques, breathwork or movement meditation. Some version of meditation is practised in virtually every community across the globe.
Meditation originated as a spiritual practice but it is a powerful tool for people to maintain a sense of well-being in a busy and stressful world. Many people use the techniques of meditation to reduce stress and anxiety and promote emotional health.
As meditation works so well to balance many emotional issues, it can also be helpful when tackling weight loss as it acknowledges the mind-body connection. A poll taken a few years ago revealed that 38% of adults had used eating or overeating to deal with or avoid stressful feelings.
In this blog, we will look at how meditation helps mental health and some ideas about meditation for weight loss. Read on to find out more.
How Does Meditation Help With Mental Health?
You can easily research many studies that show proven results of the benefits of regular meditation. Although there are several different types of meditation, they all offer a similar set of benefits for both mental and physical health.
Here are some of the best reasons for building a regular meditation practice into your life:
- Stress reduction. Reducing stress is the most common reason people turn to meditation. Mindfulness meditation can lower levels of cortisol – the stress hormone – in your body. Raised cortisol releases inflammatory chemicals in your body, leading to effects like disrupted sleep, increased blood pressure and clouded thinking. Using meditation techniques for 5 to 20 minutes a day regularly has been seen to lower stress levels.
- Controls anxiety. Research showed that an 8-week course in mindfulness meditation helped reduce anxiety symptoms. Combining mindfulness with moving meditation, like yoga, can create improved feelings of wellbeing.
- Better focus and concentration levels. Meditation helps you to focus on the present moment and works like weight training for your attention span. Regular practice of this spills out into other areas of your life, and you can find yourself able to focus better on other tasks.
- Give you an improved self-image. As repetitive negative thoughts and self-talk are often the main contributing factors in a poor self-image, meditation, which helps you to handle your thoughts better, can lead to improved self-esteem and self-awareness. Meditation encourages you to slow down and allows time for deeper self-reflection, which can mean you discover what is positive about yourself and your life.
- Help to fight addiction. As meditation is a mental discipline, it can often help people break dependencies by increasing their control and awareness of triggers for addictive behaviours.
- Can develop kindness. Loving-kindness meditation, also known as metta, can help you to cultivate compassion for yourself and others. Metta can also increase your self-esteem as you start by developing kind thoughts and feelings towards yourself and then extending them out to others through practice.
Meditation is freely available to everyone, and you can do it anywhere without any special equipment. However, there are some amazing resources to support you in your practice – support groups, meditation courses, or various apps available. There are many different ways to meditate too; you can try out different styles until you find the one that works best for you.
Meditation For Weight Loss
Just as meditation can support you with stress, anxiety or focus, it can also impact your relationship with eating and managing weight. An increasing number of studies are investigating the efficacy of mindfulness meditation for weight loss and obesity-related eating behaviours.
When you decide to lose weight, both physical and psychological factors need to work together for the best results. Overeating is often tied to stress, and, as mentioned earlier, stress releases cortisol into the body. High levels of this hormone are connected with persistent obesity. Meditation lowers stress and its physical triggers.
When you practice mindfulness meditation, you pay close attention to where you are, what you’re doing and how you are feeling in the present moment. You learn to acknowledge all these aspects of your life without judging them. This increased awareness helps you to develop a better understanding of yourself and your eating habits. You may begin to see the subconscious blocks that keep you from making healthy changes. Also, by becoming more aware of your thoughts and emotions, you can recognise the times when you are stressed and choose not to use food as comfort.
Meditation is also a good tool to stop you from falling into harmful patterns of guilt and shame as you begin to see your feelings and behaviours for what they are, forgiving yourself for making mistakes and preventing you from having a feeling of spiralling out of control.
Mediweight is a medically supervised body transformation programme. When you choose Mediweight, you will have weekly sessions with a supportive practitioner and access to extra help from an expert psychologist, who has a proven track record in helping her clients change the way they think about, and behave around, food.
- Meditation is freely available to everyone, and you can do it anywhere without any special equipment.
- It’s been scientifically proven to have multiple beneficial effects on mental and physical health.
- Meditation can reduce stress, calm anxiety, increase focus and concentration and grow self-esteem.
- It can help you with your weight loss goals, alongside diet and exercise.
- Try setting aside 10 minutes a day to get started.
Contact us, where our experienced and knowledgeable team are on hand to introduce you to Mediweight a body transformation programme that delivers fast, effective, medically supervised weight loss. Call our specialist Mediweight advisers to find out more about the programme and book your doctor consultation.
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