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Meditation changes

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10:29am, August 25, 2003

People who meditate say that the practice calms them and improves their performance on everyday tasks. There may be foundations of these benefits in the brain and immune system, a new study finds.

Psychologist Richard J. Davidson of the University of Wisconsin–Madison and his colleagues studied 41 employees of a biotechnology company, 25 of whom completed an 8-week meditation program. The scientists measured brain wave activity in all participants before, immediately following, and 4 months after the meditation program. Volunteers also received an influenza vaccination at the end of the program and gave blood samples 1 month and 2 months later, enabling the researchers to assess the volunteers' immune responses to the vaccine.

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