In addition to myriad health benefits, meditation also changes the shape and size of the gray matter in our brain. With a regular practice, the areas of the brain connected to learning and memory become enhanced and more dense over time. Better yet, there's plenty of evidence that shows a decrease of gray matter in the parts of the brain that are associated with fear and anxiety. Avid meditators also produce more antibodies to help fight the flu, so there's no better time like the present to get started in your practice.
And what's all the buzz about telomeres these days, anyway? Well, science suggests that a regular meditation practice can help lower our stress levels, thus increasing the length of our telomeres — the protective structures at the end of our chromosomes. When telomeres become shortened, we are more susceptible to disease such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
Confused? The folks at AsapSCIENCE make it easy for us in this fun video on "The Scientific Power Of Meditation." In a few short minutes, you'll quickly learn that not only does meditation keep our cells youthful and our telomeres at optimal levels, but will also improve our memory, heighten self-awareness and make us better at goal setting. And yes, meditation can even reduce the signs of aging.
Still not convinced? Studies conducted on Buddhist monks showed a greater increase of gray matter in the region of the brain associated with empathy, even more so than western meditators. In other words: more meditation makes you a more compassionate human being. And who wouldn't want that?