مراقبه مدیتیش محبت مرتبط با دیگر تلومرها در زنان
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|31831||2013||5 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||4531 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, Volume 32, August 2013, Pages 159–163
Relatively short telomere length may serve as a marker of accelerated aging, and shorter telomeres have been linked to chronic stress. Specific lifestyle behaviors that can mitigate the effects of stress might be associated with longer telomere lengths. Previous research suggests a link between behaviors that focus on the well-being of others, such as volunteering and caregiving, and overall health and longevity. We examined relative telomere length in a group of individuals experienced in Loving-Kindness Meditation (LKM), a practice derived from the Buddhist tradition which utilizes a focus on unselfish kindness and warmth towards all people, and control participants who had done no meditation. Blood was collected by venipuncture, and Genomic DNA was extracted from peripheral blood leukocytes. Quantitative real time PCR was used to measure relative telomere length (RTL) (Cawthon, 2002) in fifteen LKM practitioners and 22 control participants. There were no significant differences in age, gender, race, education, or exposure to trauma, but the control group had a higher mean body mass index (BMI) and lower rates of past depression. The LKM practitioners had longer RTL than controls at the trend level (p = .083); among women, the LKM practitioners had significantly longer RTL than controls, (p = .007), which remained significant even after controlling for BMI and past depression. Although limited by small sample size, these results offer the intriguing possibility that LKM practice, especially in women, might alter RTL, a biomarker associated with longevity.
Telomeres are nucleoprotein structures located at the ends of chromosomes which shorten with repetitive cell division and replication. Generally, telomeres shorten with age, and this shortening may be accelerated in the presence of cellular oxidative damage or chronic psychological stress (Damjanovic et al., 2007, Epel et al., 2004 and Kotrschal et al., 2007). For example, caretakers of family members with Alzheimer’s dementia had shorter telomeres than age and gender matched controls, and patients with chronic mood disorders had shorter telomeres than age and gender matched controls (Damjanovic et al., 2007 and Simon et al., 2006). Several studies have now demonstrated that higher levels of psychological and life stress are associated with shorter telomeres, such as a history of intrauterine stress (Entringer et al., 2011), childhood adversity (Kananen et al., 2010 and Tyrka et al., 2010) (although not always (Glass et al., 2010)), high phobic anxiety (Okereke et al., 2012), severe job stress (Ahola et al., 2012), concurrent stress and chronic pain (Sibille et al., 2012), and poor sleep (Prather et al., 2011). Notably, shorter telomeres have been associated with earlier mortality (Cawthon et al., 2003). Therefore, telomere length may reflect the association of psychological well-being on health and longevity. It is not clear whether lifestyle factors can increase telomere length or slow the shortening of telomeres, but there are studies that show associations between health behaviors or lifestyle choices and telomere length or telomerase, the enzyme that helps repair telomeres by adding DNA hexameric repeats to restore telomere length. For example, physical exercise has been shown to be associated with longer telomeres and higher telomerase activity, and was found to moderate the effect of stress on telomere length (Ludlow et al., 2008, Puterman et al., 2010 and Werner et al., 2009). A wide variety of healthy behaviors and health related factors have been associated with longer telomeres (body mass index below 25 kg/m2, non-smoking, healthy diet, and moderate to vigorous exercise) (Sun et al., 2012). Lastly, being married has been associated with longer telomere length at trend-level significance (p = 0.067, ( Yen and Lung, 2012)). There is evidence that meditation training could also affect telomerase. In a longitudinal study of overweight or obese women, mindfulness meditation was associated with a 39% increase in telomerase activity over 4 months, which was a 18% greater increase in telomerase activity compared to a control group, although this difference did not reach significance (Daubenmier et al., 2012). In another longitudinal study, older adults who took care of persons with dementia were taught a type of yogic meditation (Kirtan Kriya) or given music to listen to. The yogic meditation group had a greater rise in telomerase activity compared to the group who listened to music (Lavretsky et al., 2013). A study of intensive daily meditation practice showed higher cross-sectional telomerase activity in a group of individuals at the end of an intensive three-month full-time mediation retreat, compared to a waitlist control group (Jacobs et al., 2011). Concurrent psychometric measures were associated with greater telomerase activity: increases in Perceived Control, decreased Neuroticism, and increased Purpose in Life. The above findings suggest that meditation training could potentially have a protective effect on telomeres. A strong theoretical basis has been forwarded that suggests that mindfulness meditation training could have beneficial effects on telomeres by reducing cognitive stress and increasing positive states of mind (Epel et al., 2009). This hypothesis is supported by data from multiple trials that suggest that meditation practice reduces psychological stress (Kvillemo and Branstrom, 2011, Manocha et al., 2011 and Smith et al., 2008). If meditation practice protects telomeres against accelerated aging due to stress, we would expect to see longer telomeres in long-term experienced meditators. Data from other methodologies suggest that meditation could have a protective effect against aging, including a study showing a lack of age-related atrophy of brain grey matter (Lazar et al., 2005). Loving-Kindness or metta meditation, (metta from the Pali language of the Buddhist scripture), is a type of meditation practice that focuses on developing a positive intention, unselfish kindness and warmth towards all people ( Salzberg, 1995). Preliminary work on Loving-Kindness Meditation (LKM) has demonstrated positive effects of this practice. For example, employees who signed up for a workplace wellness program were randomized to learn LKM or were placed on a waitlist. After 7 weeks, individuals in the LKM program had more positive emotions, a sense of purpose in life, social support, and decreased illness symptoms such as headaches, congestion or weakness ( Fredrickson et al., 2008). In a pilot study of patients with chronic low back pain randomized to LKM or standard care, LKM was associated with greater decreases in pain, anger, and psychological distress than the control group ( Carson et al., 2005). The above data taken together suggest that LKM, a practice that promotes positive feelings towards others, can improves overall health. Because shorter telomeres are associated with chronic psychological stress, and LKM appears to decrease stress, we examined telomere length in a population of experienced LKM meditators, and hypothesized that they would have longer telomeres than age, gender, and education-matched controls. In addition, since evidence from the literature suggests that telomere length is longer in women ( Bekaert et al., 2007 and Nawrot et al., 2004), we decided to also analyze genders separately.