A form of Chinese meditation can help smokers reduce their craving for cigarettes even if they hadn’t intended to, says a researcher in the United States.
Yi-Yuan Tang of Texas Tech University analyzed data on 27 smokers, of whom 15 got five hours over two weeks in Integrative Body-Mind Training, which includes relaxation, mindfulness and mental imagery. Mindfulness is an attentive awareness of reality. Subjects in a control group received a relaxation regimen.
The researchers sought volunteers interested in reducing stress and improving their performance, but the experiment was designed to explore how IBMT — previously shown to improve the self-control pathway related to addiction — would impact smoking behavior.
IBMT, which involves whole body relaxation, mental imagery and mindfulness training led by a qualified coach, has been practiced in China for a long time, Tang said.
“We found a significant reduction in smoking — around 60 percent, in daily cigarette use,” Tang said in a statement. Those in the control group showed no decrease in smoking.
“Because mindfulness meditation promotes personal control and has been shown to positively affect attention and an openness to internal and external experiences, we believe that meditation may be helpful for coping with symptoms of addiction,” Tang added
The study was published in the Early Edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Source: Personal Liberty Digest