The Sydney Morning Herald
February 5 2003
For the first time, meditation has been
shown to produce lasting beneficial changes in immune system function
as well as brain electrical activity.
A US study which looked at a group of 25
people who underwent an eight-week meditation-training program is the
latest in a growing body of research into the so-called mind-body
As part of the study, flu shots were
given to the employees and a group of 16 other employees who didn't
receive meditation training.
When researchers checked for antibodies to the vaccine at one month and
two months later, the meditators had significantly higher levels than
Professor Richard Davidson, the study's lead
author, says some of the changes persisted for four months after the
formal eight-week course.
Researchers also found about 50 per cent
more electrical activity in the left frontal regions of the brains of
Other research has showed that part of the brain is associated with
positive emotions and anxiety reduction.
The study's findings will be published in
the upcoming issue of the Journal of Psychosomatic Medicine.
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