Numerous studies have already shown that the exercises of mindfulness meditation lowered cortisol levels (the stress hormone) and therefore had a positive effect on our nerve health. But a new study, published in the American medical journal International Journal of Behavioral Medicine seems to indicate that mindfulness has very positive effects on our heart health as well.
Mindfulness consists of fully focusing your attention on the present moment and analyzing the sensations felt. Researchers at Brown University (USA) have found a fairly strong link between cultivating this mindset and heart health.
The best indicators of good cardiovascular health
In their study, the researchers asked 382 people to rate their state of “vigilance”. Participants were asked to answer the question “I find it difficult to stay focused on what is happening in the present” on a one to six point scale ranging from “almost always” to “almost never.”
Participants who scored highest on this state of mindfulness were also those who performed best when responding to the American Cardiovascular Association’s seven indicators of cardiovascular health: avoid smoking, engage in physical activity , have a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9, eat 5 fruits and vegetables a day, have no cholesterol or diabetes and have a normalized blood pressure.
“It seems that by being more aware of what surrounds us, we are also more attentive to what is good for our body” explains Professor Eric Loucks, professor of epidemiology at Brown University. The reasons for the link between mindfulness and heart health have not yet been fully established, but when they are confirmed, Dr. Loucks believes that mindfulness could be a non-invasive solution to help patients suffering from heart disease. cardiovascular illnesses to regain a healthier lifestyle.