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Chinese Meditation Technique Produces Quick Results

Five days of integrative body-mind training decreases stress, improves attention and immunoreactivity

THURSDAY, Oct. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Integrative body-mind training -- a meditation practice based on traditional Chinese medicine -- may quickly lead to significant improvements in measures of mental and physical health, according to a study published online Oct. 11 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Yi-Yuan Tang, Ph.D., of the Institute of Neuroinformatics and Laboratory for Body and Mind, Dalian University of Technology in Dalian, China, and colleagues conducted a five-day study in which 80 undergraduate Chinese students were randomly assigned to practice either 20 minutes a day of meditation with the integrative body-mind training method or 20 minutes a day of relaxation exercises.

The researchers found that the meditation group showed significantly more improvement than the placebo group in Attention Network Test conflict scores and greater vigor on the Profile of Mood States scale. The meditation group also had lower levels of anxiety, depression, anger, fatigue and the stress hormone cortisol, and higher levels of immunoreactivity, the report indicates.

"These outcomes after only five days of training open a door for simple and effective investigation of meditation effects," the authors write. "The integrative body-mind training provides a convenient method for studying the influence of meditation training by using appropriate experimental and control methods similar to those used to test drugs or other interventions."

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