However, it isn’t just people with relatively common conditions like high blood pressure that can benefit from meditation. Many people with comparatively rare, chronic conditions have been able to benefit from meditation as well. The fact that meditation can help people with high blood pressure is particularly important, since such a wide swath of the population is going to be able to benefit from the practice.
However, many of the people who have suffered with rare, chronic conditions like psoriasis and fibromyalgia have struggled in order to find any treatments for their conditions. They may have suffered in silence, waiting for an effective treatment. Some doctors still insist that fibromyalgia is a purely psychosomatic condition, despite the evidence from blood tests. It’s a truly unfortunate situation, given the pain associated with fibromyalgia and the fact that patients will usually have it for their entire lives. In the meantime, however, these patients could at least take advantage of what meditation has to offer.
The fact that meditation is helpful for conditions like fibromyalgia and psoriasis seems somewhat counter-intuitive. Psoriasis primarily manifests itself as a skin condition, and fibromyalgia is a condition that involves severe muscle pain. However, people with both of those conditions have shown remarkable improvements as a result of adopting the practice of meditation. The unifying factor in this case is that both psoriasis and fibromyalgia are autoimmune disorders. The fact that meditation can be so instrumental in addressing these sorts of conditions indicates that it has a positive effect on a person’s immune function in general. Anything that can boost a person’s immune system, or perhaps help to regulate an immune system that has become too active, can have all sorts of wide-ranging benefits on that basis alone.
It is true that many scientists are still arguing over the exact causal relationship between meditation and many of these fantastic health benefits. Some scientists argue that these health benefits are simply extensions of the general psychological health benefits of meditation. They will point to the physical benefits that therapy can have for many people, arguing that the same principle will apply to meditation and its cluster of health benefits.
Other scientists will stress that the cultural distinction between the mind and body isn’t actually biological. People are their minds and their bodies, and their mental states will often affect their bodies directly. People can alter their mental states through the use of meditation, which is going to have an effect on their bodies one way or another. Meditation promotes mindfulness and stress reduction, and stress affects the body in so many adverse ways that reducing stress is already going to give people a whole host of health benefits.