Tag Archives: anxiety

Calm Mind, Healthy Heart: How Meditation Can Reduce The Risk Of Heart Disease

Can a calm mind lead to a healthier heart? In addition to reduced anxiety, increased focus, and a boost in overall happiness, meditation and mindfulness can also have a positive impact on your heart health. According to a recent scientific statement by the Journal of the American Heart Association, the mind-calming practice of meditation may help reduce your risk of heart disease.

Having a consistent meditation practice can help you cope with stress, help you relax, calm your mind, and improve your heart health. Through reviewing dozens of studies performed over the last two decades, researchers found meditation has helped with a number of factors linked with heart disease including lower blood pressure and lower stress levels. One study showed 15-minutes of meditation a day reduced the risk of heart attack, stroke, and death by 48 percent.

As with any new practice, it may take time to find a routine that works for you. Set aside 5-minutes just a few times a week for meditation, then gradually increase the time and frequency until you’re comfortable with daily sessions up to 15-minutes.

Meditation techniques to try:

  • Moving meditation: Yoga and tai chi are popular forms of moving meditations that emphasize slow movements, controlled breathing, and mental focus. Check out a local studio or pick a yoga routine on sites like Gaia or Youtube that can be done at home.
  • Seated meditation: Sit quietly in a comfortable position. Close your eyes and begin to breathe slowly. Beginning with your feet and working up towards your shoulders, focus on each group of muscles and relax them with each breath. Once you’ve reached your shoulders, roll your neck gently from side to side. Focus on your breathing throughout this process. When your mind begins to wander, which can happen, do not feel discouraged. Simply bring your focus back to your inhales and exhales. Continue for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Guided meditation: Listening to a soothing, directive voice allows you to focus on the present while relaxing body and mind. Apps like Headspace and numerous sites online allow for guided meditation anytime, anywhere.

There is no “right” way to meditate. Try different techniques to find one that works best for you. If you are looking for more ways to reduce stress, visit your local Relax The Back location to speak with our trained associates. They can recommend a number of product solutions that can help you reduce stress, feel better, and live a healthier, more fulfilling life.

Ways to Reduce Stress This Holiday Season


The start of November brings the beginning of the holiday season. The season for family time, gift giving, merriment and traveling. Unfortunately, this time can also bring up a lot of stress, anxiety, and angst. The average American will spend one standard work-week a year on holiday activities alone. Roughly 42 hours a year are spent traveling, wrapping gifts, returning gifts, shopping, and attending holiday parties. Not only can stress ruin your holidays, it can also cause harm to your physical and emotional wellbeing. This year, enjoy the holidays and reduce stress before it begins with these helpful tips:

  • Plan ahead: Whether you’re making dinner for friends and family or braving the crowds at the mall, making a list can help save time and energy. Wandering aimlessly around the grocery store or the mall can lead to back aches and foot pain. Making a list can get you in and out of stores quickly while keeping you organized during a hectic schedule.
  • Don’t abandon your daily routine: It’s important to stick with your daily habits. Make your workout schedule, meal planning, book club, etc., work with your holiday schedule not against it.
  • Say “no”: Be aware of when you are stretching yourself too thin. We often feel we have to say yes to all social engagements around the holidays. In the end, this can leave you feeling run down and stressed about the next event. Instead, make plans with friends and family soon after the holiday season winds down.
  • Set aside time for yourself: Go to your favorite workout class, read a book, soak in a warm bath or listen to soothing music. Make sure you are taking time to relax and de-stress.
  • Add stress-relieving products to your wish list: Ask for gifts that relieve pain and provide comfort and relaxation. For great gifts for the man, woman, or recent grads in your life take a look at Gifts of Comfort for Moms and Grads and Gift Ideas for Dads.

We hope these tips help you have a stress-free and pain-free holiday season with friends and family. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter or visit your local Relax The Back store for more holiday gift ideas.