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Turning Off "The Stress Gene"
Those practicing yoga and/or meditation often mention the physical health benefits associated with keeping up with a regimen. Until recently, however, such benefits have been difficult to measure, other than with personal accounts.
HealthDay points to a new study involving Herbert Benson, the president emeritus of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind/Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital. He reports that the mind and body are indeed very connected, and that meditation and yoga’s effects on health can be understood from a concrete, scientific perspective. Benson says, “What we have found is that when you evoke the relaxation response, the very genes that are turned on or off by stress are turned the other way.”
The mind-body connection can also be seen in negative ways: think of the “butterflies” you feel before public speaking or a big test. But, this current study goes even farther, suggesting that genes can be manipulated for positive reasons. If you haven’t already made the decision to stick to meditation, would proof of the mental health benefits convince you to do so? [HealthDay]