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Meditation Improves Immune-System Function: Study

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 connection.
     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 the non-meditators.
    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 the meditators.
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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Copyright© 2002 The Sydney Morning Herald