Meditation describes a whole range of practices and techniques which are used to focus the mind and create a state of relaxation.
Some of the common meditation techniques include chanting mantras, focusing on breathing, body scans and reciting positive affirmations. What all of these techniques have in common is that, by putting us into a relaxed state, they can bring about significant mental and physiological changes.
Many of the health benefits of meditation, including improved memory and decreased blood pressure, are well-known. However many people do not realise that having a daily practice can also really improve our appearance too.
Here are six ways in which meditation can improve your physical appearance:
Meditation can be good for your skin and several studies have shown that meditation can significantly improve a range of skin conditions. A lot of the common skin complaints that we see day to day, such as adult acne, psoriasis and eczema have all been shown to flare up when the sufferer is chronically stressed. They also often arise as a result of a weakened immune system.
Numerous studies have demonstrated that meditating can both boost the immune system as well as reduce stress. This is why many medical practitioners are now turning to therapies such as meditation, which manage stress very effectively, to treat skin disorders.
For example, a study carried out in 1983 demonstrated that biofeedback relaxation significantly improved the acne of the patients involved in the trial. In another study, mindfulness meditation helped to clear the skin of psoriasis sufferers. Another study conducted in 2005, demonstrated that patients with a skin condition called dermatomyositis, were able to heal the condition faster using transcendental meditation.
So meditating may just help you to prevent those monthly break outs or to heal that dry, scaly skin that you sometimes have to deal with.
Having a daily meditation practice may just help you to keep your body at a healthy weight. Research has been done to demonstrate that high stress levels and therefore high levels of the stress hormone cortisol can lead to weight gain (especially abdominal weight gain). Meditation has been shown to help lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol. If elevated cortisol can cause weight gain and meditation reduces cortisol levels, a wonderful side effect to meditating could be that you are able to avoid any stress-related weight gain.
Several studies have also demonstrated that mindfulness meditation may be able to help those with obesity and eating disorders to control their erratic eating patterns.
We often think of stress as being incredibly ageing and studies have proven that dealing with life stresses can result in accelerated ageing of our cells. As meditation can help to reduce stress and re-balance hormones (including through cortisol reduction), various studies have suggested that meditation may be able to slow the rate of cellular ageing. So rather than buying all of the expensive creams and potions that you hope will preserve your youth, you may be better off just meditating for 15 minutes every day.
Melatonin is the hormone that our body produces to help us to get to sleep. Studies have shown that meditation can result in increased melatonin production, therefore enabling us to get a better night’s sleep. So meditation may just be the perfect cure for those under eye bags that you have been hiding under lots of concealer.
Many men and women find that their hair starts to get thinner as they age. Some of the common causes of hair loss, such as alopecia areata and telogen effluviumare, are often caused by stress or impaired immune function. Therefore using meditation as a way to manage stress could help you to avoid these common causes of hair loss and ensure that you keep your hair thick and healthy for longer.
Meditation has been shown to be of benefit to those with depression. For this reason, meditation can improve your physical appearance because it can help you to look and feel happier and more positive. Meditation can help you to manage all of the stresses, pressures and difficulties of daily life, leaving you to focus on the positives and to be the best possible version of yourself. Whilst we often find it difficult to connect with stressed, tired and angry people, someone who is calm, happy and peaceful is always going to receive a warm reception. So finally, meditation will improve your physical appearnace because it will make you less stressed and in turn more positive and happy. Meditation helps to you manage all of the difficulties so that you can just enjoy being the attractive, charismatic person that you are.
About the author
Shelley Cho, a former finance lawyer, of www.justsensiblehealth.com runs workshops to enable her clients to optimise their professional performance through stress management. Having worked in a demanding corporate environment for several years herself, she experienced first-hand how effective stress management could really improve the professional lives of her colleagues. Reducing stress levels made employees more satisfied with their careers, improved their career progression opportunities and their enjoyment of their personal lives.
Shelley decided to train in a range of disciplines to enable her to help those around her to manage stress and improve their health including, meditation, nutrition, neuro-linguistic programming and clinical hypnotherapy. She now uses a combination of techniques to help her clients to achieve significant improvements in their mental and physical health.