As winter approaches, many of us are bracing ourselves for, or are already fighting battles with colds, the flu, and other pesky bugs. If you are looking to boost your immunity naturally over winter, meditation could be the answer.
Long-time daily meditator and expert meditation teacher Soelae Riley knows how powerful meditation is to help us manage stress and promote overall wellbeing, and she has also experienced the positive effects it has on our immunity.
“People often think they can quickly ‘boost’ their immunity during the colder months with vitamin C or other vitamins. In reality, there are no quick fixes for stronger immunity, it requires a longer term investment in better health and effective stress management practices.” says Soelae.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, getting enough sleep, and washing our hands regularly are common recommendations for helping our immunity. However, there is an emerging trend suggesting that meditation plays an important role in bolstering our immune systems.
Soelae has committed to a regular meditation practice for the last 15 years, and has noticed that she rarely gets sick. “If I do come down with something it is mild and my body seems to get over it quickly. This has been the same observation from other people I speak with who meditate regularly,” added Soelae.
She shares below three ways how regular meditation boosts your immunity system, and a way to potentially fight off infection and disease this winter naturally.
1. Reduces stress
Regular meditation is thought to be the antidote to the stress response that is so prevalent in our lives today. We are constantly bombarded by stress and anxiety, which can have a negative impact on our immune system. Chronic stress causes the release of stress hormones in the body which over time causes wear and tear on our immune system.
Meditation takes your body from operating in a ‘stress response’ mode to the ‘rest and repair’ mode which is also known as the parasympathetic nervous system. When your body is in this state, it means your body’s immune system is able to function more effectively.
2. Increases the body’s natural ‘killer cells’
Regular meditation can actually increase the activity of natural ‘killer cells’ which play an important role in fighting off infection and disease. ‘Killer cells’ are a type of white blood cell that are ready to combat stressed and abnormal cells. When these are functioning at an optimal level, your body may have a greater ability to prevent and kill off infection at a faster rate. Research shows the most effective form of meditation to increase KC’s is Transcendental Meditation, Vedic meditation and Qigong.*
3. Positively influences cells
Research also shows that regular meditation can also positively influence telomerase activity in immune cells, and increases the activity of CD8 T-cells which are another white blood cell thatare important for preventing the spread of a virus.*
So, as we gear up for the winter months, incorporating meditation into our daily routines is worth considering as a natural immune booster. Whether it’s mindful breathing, guided meditation, or learning with a qualified teacher, taking the time to relax and find stillness could potentially offer an extra layer of protection against those winter bugs.
About Soelae Riley
Soelae is a meditation & mindfulness expert, speaker, and corporate wellness facilitator. Residing in Byron Bay, Soelae offers Vedic meditation courses and works with companies all over the country to create bespoke wellness and mindfulness programs to prevent burnout and inspire peak performance.
Discover more about Soelae and tips on how meditation boosts your immunity naturally and improve your health HERE.
New to meditation? These discover the best meditation apps HERE.
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