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December 2012

Meditation May Lower Risk of Heart Disease Complications

A recent study suggests that Transcendental Meditation® (TM®) may lower the risk of stroke, heart attack and death in patients with heart disease.

TM® involves focusing on a "mantra," or a sound, word or phrase that is repeated to oneself over and over (either aloud, as a chant or silently). A goal of this type of meditation is to reach a state of consciousness that is beyond wakefulness, sleep or dreaming, in which relaxed awareness is achieved.

The new study enrolled 201 African American men and women with heart disease. Participants were randomly assigned to learn either TM® or health education. The TM® group practiced meditation daily, while the health education group practiced heart healthy behaviors daily, such as exercise, preparing healthy meals and relaxation.

After about five years, the TM® group had a 48 percent lower risk for stroke, heart attack or death than the health education group. Individuals practicing TM® also experienced significantly reduced anger and blood pressure, compared to individuals practicing heart healthy behaviors. Further research on this topic is warranted.

For more information on Transcendental Meditation®, please visit Natural Standard's Health & Wellness Database


  1. Natural Standard: The Authority on Integrative Medicine.
  2. Schneider RH, Grim CE, Rainforth MV, et al. Stress reduction in the secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease: randomized, controlled trial of transcendental meditation and health education in blacks. Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes. 2012 Nov 1;5(6):750-8. View Abstract
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