Meditation is a popular practice for reducing stress and improving mental health and wellbeing. Its effects are mediated largely by the endocrine system, including the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis, and the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, and energy homeostasis. The limited evidence available indicates that changes associated with endocrine function following meditation correspond with improvements in mental health. However, this field of study is hampered by a lack of consensus as to definition and types of meditation and the mixed quality of reported studies. Moreover, the exact mechanisms by which meditation operates remain unclear and more robust studies are required to explore this by delineating the target populations, forms, dosages, and modes of delivery of meditation, comparison groups, and health experiences and outcomes used.
Keywords: endocrine; health; meditation; wellbeing.
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