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Geriatr Gerontol Int. 2015 Oct;15(10):1158-64. doi: 10.1111/ggi.12414. Epub 2014 Nov 19.

Decrease in blood pressure and improved psychological aspects through meditation training in hypertensive older adults: A randomized control study.

Author information

1
Department of Psychobiology, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.
2
Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.
3
Department of Medicine, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.
4
Universidade Anhembi Morumbi-Laureate International Universities®, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.
5
Instituto Visão Futuro, Porangaba, São Paulo, Brazil.

Abstract

AIM:

The present study aimed to evaluate the effects of Zen meditation on blood pressure (BP) and quality of life in elderly subjects.

METHODS:

A total of 59 volunteers (21 men and 38 women), aged ≥60 years with systolic BP between 130 and 159 mmHg and diastolic BP between 85 and 99 mmHg, were randomly divided into a meditation group (MG), n = 28 and a control group (CG), n = 31. The MG meditated twice a day for 20 min for 3 months, and the CG remained on a waiting list. The BP levels were measured monthly in both groups. The volunteers' medication was kept stable. A quality of life assessment instrument was applied at the beginning and end of the study.

RESULTS:

For systolic BP, analysis of variance showed the influence of time (F(4,228)  = 4.74, P < 0.01, β = 0.98) and the interaction group × time (F(4,228)  = 3.07, P < 0.01, β = 0.89). The MG showed a significant decrease in systolic BP levels in the second measurement after 1 month of meditation practice when compared with the CG (Newman-Keuls test, P < 0.05). Starting at the second measurement, systolic BP levels in the MG were lower than the baseline and first measurement levels; however, the systolic BP levels were similar to those observed in the CG. In the quality of life assessment evaluation, a significant improvement in psychological aspects and overall quality of life in the MG compared with the CG was observed.

CONCLUSION:

These results suggest that Zen meditation is an interesting tool as a complementary treatment for hypertension in elderly subjects.

KEYWORDS:

elderly; hypertension; meditation; quality of life

PMID:
25407688
DOI:
10.1111/ggi.12414
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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