wellbeing:: does meditation really improve your skin? A definite answer.

By Marta Browne

 

What are the effects from meditating (both positive and negative) on the body and the skin?

The only negative that seems to come up for women is guilt over the time taken for themselves, rather than doing something that they might consider ‘productive’. 

Overall, regular meditation:

  • reduces stress,
  • slows the heart rate,
  • lowers blood pressure,
  • improves sleep and improves digestion

All of these mean that the body is able to function more efficiently and becomes better at absorbing nutrients and expelling waste. 

Stress reduction is an extremely important part of maintaining a healthy mind and body – when you are stressed, your skin shows it. 

What is the difference between mindfulness and meditation? 

The key difference between mindfulness and meditation is that meditation is a singular activity while mindfulness is a way of being most of the time.  When you meditate, you take a section of time out of your day to do nothing else except meditate.  This can be as little as 5 minutes or as much as 2 or more hours.  Meditation can be a quiet introspection or a specific guided mental journey to accomplish a particular purpose.  This is time where you don’t try to complete any activity other than focus in your mind.  

 Does meditation actually end the stress one has in their life? 

Yes and no.  Meditation can’t change outside stress, but it can change how you experience stress and the impact it has on your mind and body.  Regular time set aside for meditation can give you the opportunity to unwind, relax and reframe stressful events in your life.  For example, if you have a stressful occupation (such as emergency or social services), it is unlikely that your work will ever become less stressful.  Stress is inherent in certain profession and short of changing professions it will always be there.  Of course, changing professions is a legitimate strategy for those who need to make significant changes to their lives for their health. 

For most people, outside stress is not a single major stressor, but rather a collection of many minor stressors.  These would usually include work, family relationships, friendships, finances or other commitments that individually would be quite manageable, yet together can end up feeling overwhelming. 

By minimising the effect outside stress has on you, you effectively minimise the stress in your life.  

Can meditation really improve the way you look? 

Absolutely. Meditation has a variety of immediate and long terms benefits for the whole body, but it doesn’t exist in a vacuum.  A person who meditates regularly tends to feel good about helping themselves and prioritises their health.  They are more likely to also make better food choices, drink adequate amounts of water and limit unhealthy habits such as smoking or excessive alcohol consumption.  Regular meditation improves your ability to cope with stress and improves sleep – both of these have been shown to have significant positive effects on the way your body looks and how it functions.

What is the best way for a person to get started with meditating? 

There are hundreds of ways to get started!  Depending on your personality type, you may feel best with apps, books, online videos, audio tracks or even with a personal therapist who can lead you through the most appropriate meditation for your needs. 

The most important thing you need to get started is time – you need to schedule and commit time for yourself where you won’t be interrupted or pulled away too soon.  You don’t need any special equipment, although some people prefer to have a comfortable cushion or mat, while others prefer a visual focus to stop their mind and eyes from wandering – something as simple as a pebble can fill this need very nicely, although some people like to use crystals, candles or pictures.

What are 3 go-to resources for a person interested in learning more about meditation?

I tend to lean towards using online resources and apps because I find that my patients can really get into the habit of using them on a regular basis.  Books often get left on the bedside table and courses can be expensive. 

My favourites are, iAwake, Headspace, and Wildflowers.

 

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About the Author.

Marta is an integrative naturopath, drawing upon both conventional and natural health sciences to assess, treat and prevent conditions by working together with GP's, specialists, physiotherapists, psychologists, dieticians and other fields to provide the best possible health care outcomes.  Her practice focus is on herbal medicine, nutrition and lifestyle for the promotion of optimal health. 

You can find out more about Marta at her website.

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