Mindfulness & Heart Health : Can meditation lower your risk of heart disease ?

By Dolly M George

11 Jun, 2018


Your mind and heart are intricately connected --what’s good for the mind generally tends to be good for the heart too!

What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a conscious effort to focus on the present moment, refusing judgment on any thought feeling or sensation of that moment. Being mindful, helps you in learning to think and act out of the reality of that moment rather than allowing instinctive, but unproductive emotional and thinking patterns to drive your responses to situations in your life. Being mindful has proven to be beneficial for the heart.

Meditation is a formal tool used to practice mindfulness. According to a scientific statement published in the Sept. 28, 2017, Journal of the American Heart Association, practicing meditation may be helpful in reducing the risk of heart disease by improving many of the factors linked it.

How does meditation benefit your heart?
Studies published over the past two decades have found that meditation can improve several factors linked with heart disease —  from reducing stress to lowering high blood pressure.
Meditation allows you to let go of negative thought patterns. Studies indicate that, it can reduce stress, anxiety depression and enable you to have a positive outlook on life- which can motivate and inculcate healthy habits in you such as eating mindfully, sleeping better, exercising regularly etc.

Meditation has been proven to lower blood pressure and raise heart rate variability (HRV).  Heart rate variability which is a measure of your heart health, is the variation of the time interval between two heartbeats-- the higher the HRV, the healthier is your heart.

Thinking to get started?
Lot of resources are out there to help you get started with meditation. Whichever you choose, you need to stick with it.
One simple, free of cost method that that you can practice is sitting comfortably and focusing on any phrase that is meaningful to you… maybe it’s --“Let go, God is in control” - “I am at peace” and so on.

Close your eyes and say your phrase silently as you breathe. When your thoughts wander away, bring your focus back to your phrase - gently, without straining.


Start with just a few minutes in a quiet and calm setting, and as it becomes easier, gradually add more time and frequency until you can do it daily for up to 20 minutes.


Prayer is also a form of meditation, and lately, there has been much scientific interest in the power of prayers to heal, when done in a conscious manner.


Read on to learn how mindful eating can improve your heart health

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