The process of meditation can be as helpful for those suffering from depression as taking anti-depressants and other medications, new research suggests.
Gaining a peaceful mind through practicing meditation can help prevent a person from sliding back into a depression as effectively as, if not better than, medications, according to a study by researchers at Oxford University and published in The Lancet.
For the study, researchers looked at 492 adults who were severely depressed over a two year period. Half of the study participants received mindfulness training and the other half were on anti-depressant drugs.
This form of meditation is aimed at aiding a person to become more aware of the present and to avoid them losing control of their thoughts and spiraling back into depression.
Overall, the researchers found that around 47 percent of the people in the study who were taking medication fell back into depression. In comparison, only 44 percent of the participants who undertook the mindfulness mediation practices went back to being depressed.
Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest and affects how you feel, think and behave. The condition can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems and can require long-term treatment.