Wellness and beauty are not solely related to our body, but also – or especially – to what’s inside, our mind and soul.
With this concept in mind, at The Retreat we’ve begun to focus equally on our inner wellbeing. Activities such as yoga and meditation are part of many people’s routine as they help them to cope with every day stress and find some peace. Maybe you’re one of them, but even if you practise meditation daily (even a few minutes a day can make a difference) you may not be aware of the many wide-spectrum benefits this healthy activity delivers.
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Depression, Stress and Anxiety Disorders 
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A series of studies have shown how people who follow any kind of meditation program report a significantly decreased level of depression, anxiety and stress up to six months later. These stats also include mothers-to-be, who, following the courses, showed a more intense bonding to their babies in the womb. As a matter of fact, it has been proven that meditation dramatically reduces harmful overthinking.
The meditation process is simple and yet effective, and consists of you sitting with your eyes closed and focused on your breathing. By concentrating on the rhythm of the breath, a feeling of detachment is released, preparing your mind to be free and relieved from any preoccupation.
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Focus, Attention, Mental Strength
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Another recent study demonstrated that even 20 minutes a day of practice would enhance cognitive skills and information processing tasks, allowing you to maintain focus, especially during boring work tasks.  Apparently, scientists discovered the portion of cortex that allows the brain to process information faster is larger in long-term meditators than in those who do not meditate at all. This part of the cortex, indeed, seems to be responsible for improving brain’s activities such as processing information, making decisions and forming memories.
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Physical Benefits: blood pressure, immune system, heart diseases 
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In a study published in late 2012, following an experiment involving over 200 high-risk individuals, it was noticed that meditation decreased risk for stroke in coronary heart disease patients, due to a lower blood pressure and less stress factors. Clinical research showed that Zen Meditation especially reduces stress and high blood pressure, because relaxation results in the formation of nitric oxide, which expands blood vessels.
Generally speaking, both yoga and meditation improve mitochondrial energy production, consumption and resiliency. This results in a stronger system immunity and resistance to stress.
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Benefits in Relationships 

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It’s no secret that meditation, as a part of Buddhism and other religions focused on positive thinking, allows us to have a compassionate attitude towards others, the environment, and – on a larger scale – the world. The sense of benevolence and care towards others is one of the many benefits of regularly practising yoga and meditation. Indeed, it’s been proved that such exercises boost one’s ability to empathise with others by reading their facial expressions. Also, feelings of self-acceptance and ego-resilience, not to mention a decreased level of worry and emotional suppression, enhance the relationships with the others, resulting in a better way to live one’s life.
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Reference (which includes many other sources): Live and Dare
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