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The experiment on a buddhist monk: meditation combats the aging of the brain
Meditate can help. Especially in a situation of uncertainty like the one we find ourselves in because of the emergency coronavirus. And the meditation is good not only in the moment of a crisis or a difficulty unsought, but also on the long term and in everyday life, to improve the psychological well-being. And not only that, a research group at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Harvard Medical School, in fact, has shown that meditating regularly, a little bit of time each day, could slow down aging of the brain. The research is now rather limited, since it relies on the study of the brain of a buddhist monk. However, it provides a first indication on the benefits of this practice even at the cognitive level. The results are published in the journal Neurocase.

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also READ - “Coronavirus, how to manage stress and anxiety” The study, The researchers involved in a study of brain imaging, a well-known buddhist monk, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, currently the 45-year-old, who always practice meditation on a regular basis, all the days of his life, except for rare exceptions. Scientists have been able to “see” his brain through an mri and have observed how it changed during a period of 14 years. In the meantime, have compared his images of the brain with those of 105 adults residing in the same area that are not pondered.

according to the pictures, write the researchers, some areas of the brain of the buddhist monk seemed to be different and “younger” than those of other people. In particular, at 41 years old with the brain of Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche shows a structure typical of someone who is about 33 years old. “The rate of brain aging is slower if compared with that of the volunteers of the control group”, we read in the paper, and this suggests a possible slowdown in the deterioration that takes place usually in our mind.

Also, given that the study lasted 14 years and started when Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche had less than 30 years, the scientists were also able to observe that the maturation of the brain of a buddhist monk took place earlier than that of boys of his own age. In short, meditating regularly would do well to have a head on your shoulders even when you are very young and to keep alive their cognitive skills when they are older. Meditation against stress, Meditating can help manage stress and negative emotions such as anxiety, pain, fear, anger, that may be present especially in this period in which we have to tackle the epidemic of Covid19 and it is necessary that we should remain at home. And this practice may help to relax the body and mind, as well as to relieve pain and stress. In this regard, not to meditate by yourself, there are several initiatives online, via video call, to share this moment – an example is provided by the Meditation Centre in Rome, which organizes meetings live.

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“Depression, the benefits of meditation” But not always and not for all, As in all things, not all and not always – not in all periods and in all the moments of your life – meditate can necessarily help or do well, and it is important to follow your feelings to see if there is support or not. The show, for example, a recent study in Plos One that sheds light on the other side of the coin, the possible side effects of this practice. Among these, there are problems of various kinds, from poor concentration to depressive symptoms up to the memory of traumatic events to the meditator, after having suffered a trauma. In short, meditating can be good, but always paying attention to the fact that not only becomes a commitment and a rule in the more to be respected in a complex period like the one we are experiencing.

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