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Study on Transcendental Meditation and heart disease has low 'p-value', high significance
by Global Good News staff writer
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27 November 2012
Transcendental Meditation has been found to reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke, and death. A study recently published in a journal* of the American Heart Association and sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (US) found that in heart patients practising Transcendental Meditation, those events were reduced by nearly half.
This was a rigorous scientific study conducted over a ten-year period, and the results were quite conclusive, said lead researcher Robert Schneider, MD, FACC, director of the Institute for Natural Medicine and Prevention at Maharishi University of Management.
How conclusive? The study has a 'p-value' of 0.025.
Dr Schneider explained, 'P is the probability that the result is due to chance. In objective science . . . it is the calculation of the probability that something is due to chance. . . . Scientists have set a threshold. They have said if there is 5 per cent or less chance of error, then we will accept it.'
The study on Transcendental Meditation and heart disease, 'given the number of people, the time, the events, and the statistical significance, indicated that there was a 2.5 per cent probability that this [result] was due to chance. In modern science, that's considered quite significant,' Dr Schneider said.
Another significant aspect of the study, besides strong findings showing reduction in heart attack, stroke, and death, was the indication of a dose-response relationship.
In a dose-response relationship, explained Dr Schneider, 'the more the dose, the greater the response. Along those lines, when we looked at the people who were most regular in their [meditation], which was more than half of the people, they actually had a 66 per cent reduction in their clinical events, so it's really remarkable what you can do with the mind-heart connection.'
Dr Schneider added that the study was a collaborative effort, praising the teams of researchers both at Maharishi University of Management at the Medical College of Wisconsin. 'We also had independent data analysis at the University of Massachusetts, so it was a real multi-institutional effort.'
* The study, 'Stress Reduction in the Secondary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease', was published in November 2012 in the American Heart Association journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.
See previous articles in this series:
∙ NIH-sponsored study finds Transcendental Meditation dramatically reduces death in heart disease patients
∙ Substantial support for research on Transcendental Meditation and heart disease: Maharishi University of Management
∙ What is heart disease and how can we reverse it? Lead author of new meditation study explains
∙ Rigorous methods characterize new study on Transcendental Meditation and heart disease
∙ Meditation reduces heart attack by almost 50%, study published in American Heart Association journal finds
∙ Meditation can lower risk of heart attack and stroke - TIME magazine reports
∙ Regular Transcendental Meditation practice increases survival rate: New study
∙ Transcendental Meditation: A new class of medication, from the body's 'inner pharmacy'
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