Following a positive lab test for breast cancer, a woman may feel overwhelmed and stressed. This reaction is common among breast cancer survivors and is a primary cause of depression. However, new research indicates that simple meditative practices may help prevent depression among breast cancer survivors.
For the study, a team of researchers from the University of Missouri recruited a group of breast cancer survivors to participate in a meditation class lasting between eight and 10 weeks. The class explained the basics of meditation and how to deal with stress that may arise during the course of recovery.
The results showed that participants were able to lower their blood pressure, heart rate and respiratory rate through meditation. Additionally, meditation helped many individuals improve their moods.
Given the fact that up to 50 percent of breast cancer survivors develop depression, the findings could have important implications. Jane Armer, one of the principle researchers on the study, said that meditation may serve as an effective complement to standard cancer therapies. This may help individuals regain a sense of control in their lives, thereby reducing their diabetes risk.