Does practicing meditation help to keep you healthy?
A group of researchers at Infanta Cristina Hospital in Spain have published an interesting study which measures the effect of Transcendental Meditation technique on one’s immune system.
TM has ’significant effect’ on quantity of immune cells
The researchers measured different subsets of leukocytes and lymphocytes – the cells in our blood which help to fight off viruses and bacteria. A control group of 16 healthy subjects was compared against a group of 19 people who regularly practice either Transcendental Meditation or the more advanced TM-Sidhi technique.
This elegantly simple method pointed to a significant difference in the level of immune cells.
As the scientists stated in their conclusion, “The technique of meditation studied seems to have a significant effect on immune cells. This effect is manifest in the different circulating levels of lymphocyte subsets analyzed.“
Though the causes of this enhancement of the immune system were beyond the scope of the study, the authors put forward the hypothesis that the results obtained could be largely explained by TM reducing overall stress levels.
Maria L Dominguez, Carmen Duran, Lucia Garcia, Jose R Infante, Fernando Peran, Juan I Rayo, Ana Roldan, Justo Serrano. “Levels of immune cells in transcendental meditation practitioners.” International Journal of Yoga, Vol. 7, No. 2, July-December, 2014, pp. 147-151. Full text online