There are many benefits to meditation for chronic illness

Meditation Benefit #1 stress reduction

A man named Herbert Benson found it decreased metabolism, heart rate, breathing rate and slower brain waves. This response he coined the ‘relaxation response’ which can be triggered by a Variety of techniques and traditions. They found meditation can affect healing time for example. In recent research, it has been shown to turn genes on and off, which is frankly mind-blowing. After 8 weeks the amygdala, stress center of the brain, gets smaller. Just 20  minutes a day can help with pain sensitivity.

Meditation Benefit #2 pain management

Here are some of the apps I have used while getting into the habit of meditation.

1)Buddhify Is one of my favorite meditation apps. It has 80 meditations displayed on a wheel. You can choose for example “can’t sleep” and 6 can’t sleep medications fold out on the wheel for that selection. What I like is all the meditations are right there to search from. It is fantastically easy to use. And it works great. I use this one most often on the go, since it is quick and easy to pick from the dial when I need to do a meditation. Completely what you see is what you get. No extra fees on this one.

2)Breathe This is my other favorite to use. It has a section for learning to meditate for beginners. Which really I still am. A list of meditations quick picks. And by ‘my progress’ so you can see how you are getting on with making this a routine. Finally, it has a ‘How are You’ section that asks you how you are physically, mentally, and emotionally and choosing meditations for you based on your responses. I use this one most often since it is more complete.

3) Headspace– I like this app and there are ten sessions for free. It looks awesome for the other sections in it that I have explored and I found it in the free apps. I am just not sure it is free after the 10 sessions so I have not explored it as much as the others. But I loved the format. I loved the extensive list of meditations in each section. I loved the style of the meditations. I just think it might be a lite version where it is partly free and have to pay to get the rest.

Check out the author of the Whole Health Life resources page on meditation

Chopra Center Meditations

Healthline recommended apps

Posts on meditation:

How Meditation Can Reshape Our Brains: Sara Lazar at TEDxCambridge 2011

First attempt at meditation

Fibromyalgia: does mindfulness help with depressive symptoms?

I read The Whole Life for a review and it has a section on the research behind meditation that was fascinating. The book itself is amazing in the research and approach to illness.