October 23, 2017
MEDITATION MIGHT HELP REDUCE THE RISK OF CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE IN ADDITION TO A HEART-HEALTHY LIFESTYLE, ACCORDING TO A NEW SCIENTIFIC STATEMENT RELEASED BY THE AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION.
The authors of the statement reviewed data from studies on meditation and cardiovascular risk reduction in PubMed. Studies included in the analysis examined the effects of meditation on cardiovascular risk associated with stress, smoking cessation, blood pressure reduction, insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome, endothelial function, inducible myocardial ischemia, and primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease.
In neurophysiological and neuroanatomical studies, meditation was found to demonstrate a potential long-standing effect on the brain that provided some plausible biological benefits on the physiological basal state and on cardiovascular risk.
While the qualities, and in some cases, quantities of the studies were modest, the authors found adequate evidence that suggested meditation could possibly benefit cardiovascular risk.
“Given the low costs and low risks of this intervention, meditation may be considered as an adjunct to guideline‐directed cardiovascular risk reduction by those interested in this lifestyle modification, with the understanding that the benefits of such intervention remain to be better established,” the authors concluded. “Further research on meditation and cardiovascular risk is warranted.”
Levine GN, Lange RA, Bairey‐Merz CN, et al. Meditation and cardiovascular risk reduction: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association [published online September 28, 2017]. J Am Heart Assoc. https://doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.117.002218.
Don Fisher D.O.
Medical Director/ Physician
The BEST Program, Inc.