Meditation for Strokes

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Research has indicated that the reduction of stress and improvements to blood flow that meditation can bring significantly lower risks of strokes. Focused meditation has been shown to result in a widening of arteries and an improved flow of blood to the brain.

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  • The problem

    A stroke is a serious life-threatening condition that can cause severe disability and brain damage to sufferers and occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off. 

    The most common type of strokes are Ischaemic strokes. They are caused by blood clots causing a blockage; these blood clots tend to form in areas where the arteries have been narrowed or blocked over time by fatty deposits known as plaques.

    Strokes are a medical emergency and urgent treatment is essential. The sooner somebody is able to receive treatment after having a stroke the better their chances of recovery.  

    Better still, we should do all we can, whilst we are able, to lower our chances of having one at all.

  • How it affects you

    Under the stress reaction, a number of physiological changes take place, which put pressure on the blood vessels within the brain.

    Our blood flow tends to be redirected towards the thighs so that we can engage in the classic ‘fight or flight’ response and run fast. 

    When this happens, our blood chemistry completely changes and is filled with clotting agents. Our blood pressure goes up. 

    A lot of glucose and fats are broken down and begin floating around the system increasing our risk of atherosclerotic plaques.

    The trouble is, that except in very rare life-threatening situations, our propensity to stress is a maladaptive reaction; it’s not our thighs that need this blood flow, it’s our brain.

  • How can Beeja meditation help?

    The major way in which Beeja meditation helps to prevent a stroke is by preventing stress.

    Meditation calms the mind, body and nervous system so that we are much less likely to respond in a stressful way when challenged. We achieve a more balanced blood flow so that no areas of our brain or body are starved of oxygen, nutrients or other vital ingredients.

    If our blood pressure is high, which it is in the vast majority of potential stroke victims, both our systolic and diastolic blood pressure will fall towards the normal range. There is less arterial debris floating around and far fewer coagulants jeopardising the free flow of our circulation.

    Meditation will also help to reduce the damage caused by a stroke.

    When it comes to how to avoid a stroke, meditation is a key preventative tool. But we don’t always have the power of hindsight. And one of the major reasons why there is so much damage after a stroke is because of the overactive adrenal response when there is a neurological crisis – the exact opposite of what we really want to happen.

    As a result, the hippocampus, the mediator of our memory, spatial awareness and other important functions, becomes severely damaged.

    By making us more robust and regulating our hormone production, meditation helps to calm the response of the adrenal glands. In addition, when we meditate, there are far fewer free radicals scavenging their way around our brain tissues, causing damage wherever they go.

    Meditation also reduces the production of excitatory neurotransmitters that cause severe damage when let loose.Our cellular repair functioning becomes optimised so any tissue damage that has been caused can be repaired much better than under normal conditions.

    Moreover, the enhanced brain state functioning that is unique to this technique improves many areas of cognitive ability. If you are recovering from a stroke, it will increase the likelihood and speed with which you can regain your memory, learning and motor skills, so that you can begin to function more normally again.

    Research has proved that two of the four areas of the prefrontal cortex (the “thinking” part of the brain behind the forehead) thicken and strengthen with meditation. 

    The brain is an incredible organ, and if we can give it the rest and repair it needs through something as simple as daily meditation, it can adapt incredibly to a wide range of neurological traumas.

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  • Reviews

    Michelle, Yoga Teacher, London

    “Despite years of yoga practice and numerous mindfulness meditation techniques a stroke left me feeling overwhelmed, anxious and fearful. A friend from Sydney recommended Beeja Meditation so after some research I attended an intro talk with Will who was articulate and knowledgeable with a good sense of humour. He communicated the simplicity of the technique whilst backing it with firm scientific research. I knew this was exactly what I had been looking for. Since the course I have gained a new level of calmness, clarity and balance. My focus has improved, my energy levels have increased dramatically and I’m so much happier in all aspects of my life.”

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“It appears that transcendental meditation is a technique that turns on the body’s own pharmacy - to repair and maintain itself.”

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Dr Robert Schneider, director of the Institute for Natural Medicine and Prevention in Iowa

"..I managed to switch off for long enough to get that floaty feeling people from Brighton swear by."
"I have a lifelong tool that has brought me calm, clarity and increased creativity"
"I've noticed that I’m no longer ruled by emotions – I can see when I’m angry or frustrated without being in that feeling.”

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