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Protection throughout the Life Span: The Psychoneuroimmunologic Impact of Indo-Tibetan Meditative and Yogic Practices

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The Indo-Tibetan tradition claims that proficiency in the suggested longevity practices of meditation, diet, and physical exercise (yoga), will result in profound anti-aging, stress-mediating and health enhancing effects. Western biomedical research has begun to demonstrate that the psychobiological states induced and cultivated by cognitive behavioral practices which are emblematic of those contained within the Indo-Tibetan tradition (hypnosis, meditation, visualization, systematic relaxation), indeed do have a profound impact on the body's protective and regulatory systems. Although continued study is necessary, much of the early research illuminating the mechanisms responsible for the life-span extending and health-enhancing effects of these cognitive behavioral practices points to the importance of their anti-inflammatory, anti-stress, and antioxidant effects as well as their impact in enhancing the production of endogenous substances that possess general longevity-enhancing, regenerative properties.
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Keywords: meditation; preventative health; psychoneuroimmunology

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York, USA

Publication date: August 1, 2009

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