“A meditation habit can strengthen the body's immune function, plus increase brain performance in the form of electrical activity.”
Have you ever been so busy that you ignore your body? Maybe work was busy, or you had a new baby, or a relationship was ending and you just forgot to put the focus on your adorable self. During stressful or emotional events, it becomes easy to become mind identified. When we become solely mind identified, we lose focus of our physical bodies and become at risk of feeling run-down and getting sick.
There has been plenty of research on the mind-body connection in the last 10 years. More specifically, research has been conducted on the physical benefits of meditation. Here is one study.
In a nutshell, meditation increases electrical activity in the left side of your brain; the part of your brain that acts as a command center for your immune system. Increased activity in this area of the brain helps make the immune system act more efficiently and produce more defense cells.
Another study at the University of Wisconsin indicates:
To gauge immune function, researchers measured antibodies in the blood that fight flu and other infections. Volunteers in the study who meditated had significantly higher levels of these healthful antibodies than non-meditators after just one to two months.
So, not only is bringing awareness to the body a great method to quiet the chatter in the mind and anchor us in presence, it can also help us stay physically healthy. Consciously choosing to bring more awareness to your physical self will build a better connection with your body and help you tune in with what it truly needs, whether that's more sleep, healthier food or less time at the computer. This is a good thing to consider with cold and flu season quickly approaching.
Your body is the only one you have. Take good care of it. Meditate more.