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For your guts sake meditate

Alteration of faecal microbiota balance related to long-term deep meditation.

The results of a study into the relationship between long-term meditation and gut health have been published in the in the Journal of General Psychiatry

A team from Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine say a study of Buddhist monks found that their microbes differed substantially from those of their non-meditating neighbours. A healthy balance of good gut bacteria has been linked to a lower risk of anxiety, depression, and cardiovascular disease.

Scientists believe that taking in deep breaths helps dilate blood vessels, allowing more blood to flow through them and lowering blood pressure.

Over several years, meditating may help to regulate the gut microbiome and potentially lower the risks of physical and mental ill health, according to researchers. Bacteria can affect mood and behaviour through the gut-brain axis which includes the body’s immune response, hormonal signalling and stress response functions.

Further information about meditation, including how to meditate, are available for free from

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