Yoga and Meditation Change Gene Response to Stress

An article in Medical News Today reported on a study showing that mind-body techniques (such as yoga, meditation, and repeated prayer) can change how the genes respond to stress.

Here are some great excerpts from the article:

Mind-body practices that produce a relaxation response have been used by people across cultures for thousands of years to prevent and treat disease.

The researchers wanted to test to see whether the relaxation response creates the same kind of gene expression changes that the "flight or fight" stress response creates.

They studies three groups of people:  long-term practitioners of daily yoga, repeated prayer or meditation; healthy individuals who were not daily practitioners; and a group who were not previously daily practitioners, but who underwent an 8-week relaxation response training.

There were significant differences  in the expressions of over 2,000 genes, and even the short-term practitioners showed similar responses to long-term practitioners in over 400 genes, including "cell metabolism, oxidative phosphorylation, generation of reactive oxygen species and response to oxidative stress".  Whew.  That's a mouthful.

Click here to read the full article in Medical News Today.  Then pop into a yoga or meditation class today, and build a better you.

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