The GuardianThe Guardian

Mind over matter: Can meditation soothe my troubled insides?

By Hannah Jane Parkinson

19 Mar 2023 · 6 min read

Editor's Note

Monks have been shown to have healthier gut microbiomes and better metabolisms than the typical person. Is this down to regular meditation? The Guardian explores the positive effects of the practice.

I am two weeks into my journey of improving holistic health via the means of meditation when my neighbour texts me to say she spotted me through my window, and am I OK because I “looked a bit dead”. These are not the glowing Gwyneth Paltrow vibes I was aiming for. But I had headphones in, I tell her. People can die with headphones in, she says.

At least it meant I had remained still for a length of time. After the latest remarkable study connecting meditation to improved gut health – itself a marker for overall positive health outcomes – I am attempting enlightenment of both the mind and bowels.

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