Washington: A new research has found that people with heart disease who practiced Transcendental Meditation regularly were 48 percent less likely to have a heart attack, stroke or die from all causes compared with those who attended a health education class over more than five years.Those practicing meditation also lowered their blood pressure and reported less stress and anger. And the more regularly patients meditated, the greater their survival, said researchers who conducted the study at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.“We hypothesized that reducing stress by managing the mind-body connection would help improve rates of this epidemic disease,” said Robert Schneider, M.D., lead researcher and director of the Institute for Natural Medicine and Prevention in Fairfield, Iowa.“It appears that Transcendental Meditation is a technique that turns on the body``s own pharmacy — to repair and maintain itself,” he stated.For the study, researchers randomly assigned 201 African Americans to participate in a Transcendental Meditation stress-reducing program or a health education class about lifestyle modification for diet and exercise.Those in the meditation program sat with eyes closed for about 20 minutes twice a day practicing the technique, allowing their minds and bodies to rest deeply while remaining alert.Participants in the health education group were advised, under the instruction of professional health educators, to spend at least 20 minutes a day at home practicing heart-healthy behaviours such as exercise, healthy meal preparation and non-specific relaxation.
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