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Benefits of Prayer and Meditation on Health

Many people benefit spiritually from prayer and meditation, and find peace in this busy and hectic world, but there is growing research to support the positive benefits on our physical health as well. This research suggests that those who meditate and pray exhibit fewer signs of psychological and physical disorders and require fewer visits to the doctor, and may have a lower risk for disease including cancer and heart disease and heal faster after surgery.

Positive health benefits you can experience from practicing meditation and prayer regularly include:

Happiness. Prayer and meditation help banish negative thoughts and promote peace of mind allowing you to be happy. Prayer and meditation have been shown to increase the production of serotonin, a natural chemical produced by our brain that enhances our moods and attitudes and contributes to the level of happiness we feel.

Increased compassion. Although hard to measure, those who pray and meditate demonstrate an increase in compassion. Compassion, thinking about the welfare of others before your own may be the crucial component of receiving personal benefits from meditation and prayer.

Alleviate pain. Prayer and meditation have been shown to increase the ability to control chronic long-term pain and migraine headaches. It's also been shown effective for treating withdrawal symptoms in recovering drug addicts.

Confidence and self esteem. Through meditation and prayer you will develop a better understanding of yourself and to begin accepting the things you can't change. Once you become more accepting of yourself and others you will become more confident, self-aware and experience an increase in your self esteem.

Increased mental benefits. Additional mental benefits from prayer and meditation include a greater level of creativity, decreased anxiety and depression, improved learning and memory, fewer mood swings and increased emotional stability. Reduced stress. An important health benefit, meditation and prayer significantly reduce stress and anxiety resulting in lower blood pressure and a lower risk of heart disease. Reducing stress and anxiety will also aid weight loss and weight management as you decrease the stress eating and binge eating episodes related to stress. Reducing the negative effects of stress and anxiety alone can improve your health substantially. You may live longer. Considering this long list of benefits of meditation and prayer and their ability to minimize the ill effects of stress, depression, pain, and low self esteem while helping your body heal faster and overcome ailments and aging - the most striking benefit would appear to be that prayer and meditation may help you live longer.

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