New study published in the prestigious American J Cardiology that used a 5-years data from over 60,000 participants shows significant effect of meditation on high cholesterol levels, hypertension, diabetes, risk of stroke and heart disease.
Using data from the 2012 and 2017 National Health Interview Survey, the authors identified 61,267 patients that were with hypercholesterolemia, systemic hypertension, diabetes, stroke or coronary artery disease, as well as those who reported that they meditate.
Nearly 10% of those followed reported performing meditation of any kind. After statistical adjustment (for age, sex, BMI, race, marital status, cigarette smoking, sleeping duration, and depression), meditation practice was independently associated with a lower prevalence of , it was found that meditation practice was associated with the following health benefits, compared with those who do not practice meditation:
35% lower risk of having high bad cholesterol levels
14% lower risk of suffering from high blood pressure
30% lower risk of having diabetes
24% lower of suffering stroke
49% lower chance of having coronary heart disease
The study further supports studies that have shown that regular meditation reduces blood pressure and improves overall heart disease and further deterioration.
As with large follow-up studies it does not specify which type of meditation was practiced nor the intensity and duration of meditation, which could be longer, more frequent and for more years. However, the researchers conclude that meditation was found to be associated with a lower incidence of risk factors and cardiovascular disease among the general population in the United States.
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Krittanawong C et al. Meditation and Cardiovascular Health in the US. Am J Cardiol. 2020 (15) 131:23-26. DOI: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2020.06.043