Nature Medicine | Spoonful of Medicine

Serenity now!

You probably know that pondering the universe and its mysterious ways can soothe a broken heart. Apparently, it can also physically heal the heart.

Scientists are reporting in the journal Ethnicity & Disease that practicing transcendental meditation improves the heart’s functioning (as measured by a six-minute walk test), helps relieve depression and generally improves the quality of life in people with congestive heart failure.

The randomized study has a small sample size: 23 African American men and women with the average age of 64, who had all been hospitalized for heart failure, abd observed for three and six months.

But this strikes me as one of those win-win strategies. Even if the physical improvement is small, I buy the lifestyle effect. I’m one of those New Yorkers who can never fully shut down, but I bet meditating every day would make me more er, serene, and indirectly more healthy.

(And for those of you who’re Seinfeld fans, yes, that’s a shout out to the show.)


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