Mindfulness Meditation – A Pill Free Pain Reliever

A study has proven mindfulness meditation to be a pill free pain reliever. The study was published in the current issue of the Journal of Neuroscience, and team leader Fadel Zeidan states “our finding could be important for the millions of chronic pain sufferers who are seeking a fast-acting, non-opiate-based therapy to alleviate their pain”.

In the study, 78 healthy and pain free volunteers were divided into four groups with pain being induced by using a thermal probe to heat a small area of the skin to 49 degrees. The four groups consisted of meditation plus naloxone; non-meditation plus naloxone; meditation plus saline placebo; and non-meditation plus saline placebo. Participants then rated their pain on a sliding scale.

The results showed that pain ratings were reduced by 24% in the meditation group that received the naloxone, proving that even when the body’s opioid receptors were blocked, meditation was still able to reduce pain. In the meditation group that received the placebo, pain was also reduced by 21%.

Both non-meditation groups reported increases in pain regardless of whether they received the naloxone or the placebo.

“This study adds to the growing body of evidence that something unique is happening with how meditation reduces pain. These findings are especially significant to those who have built up a tolerance to opiate-based drugs and are looking for a non-addictive way to reduce their pain.” said Zeidan.