The benefits meditation can have over your life can often go beyond what you’ve thought this far. Many times, surprising you in areas where you didn’t see a direct correlation with meditation.
Now, while meditation isn’t always likely to directly cause some of these changes, meditation does directly boost certain areas of your life which help you to make these changes, hence why it isn’t always a direct benefit.
When it comes to losing weight or burning calories, how well does meditation do? Can it give us the magical discipline or willpower we need to achieve a certain weight goal?
Discipline is often seen as this unachievable thing only reserved for those naturally born with it, but with meditation, you’re training yourself to be more effective with that, and that’s no exception when it comes to burning calories.
For this occasion, I’ll explain in what ways meditation can be beneficial if you have any weight loss goals, and if you should meditate when trying to burn calories.
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Do You Burn Calories While Meditating?
When it comes to meditating, you’re not really burning calories to the degree that they’ll have a significant impact. You may be burning some, but meditation alone and the process of meditation don’t have a target to lose weight.
However, if you combine meditation with exercise, making you more centered on that, it could be used to your benefit when it comes to burning calories. There’s no shortage of quick fixes advertised to help individuals lose weight in a short amount of time.
Meditation is by no means an easy fix where you lose a certain number of pounds. By embarking on the journey of meditation, you acknowledge and understand that things take time and hard work, but meditation is supposed to help you with the goals you have.
So any benefit you get from meditation that has a direct correlation to burning calories, will either be before meditation if you’ve already formed the habit or after the meditation practice.
Burning Calories Happen After Meditation
With long periods of meditation, you train yourself to be more disciplined and do the things you actually want to do, rather than do the things your mind wants you to do because they feel good at the moment and your mind rewards you for short term gratification, by releasing a lot of dopamine.
But it’s better when the source of dopamine is natural and you’ll naturally have a lot more dopamine and long-lasting dopamine by meditating and making it your day-to-day routine.
With more self-control, you’ll be able to be more mindful about what you eat, and rather than be propelled by impulse, you could reach a point where you’re motivated by a goal you have and thus, choose not to overeat.
Now, by no means is this saying that meditation is the solution to everyone’s eating impulse. Some won’t bother with meditation to begin with.
But for those sticking with it for the long-term, the benefits start to manifest in the span of months, having a significant decrease in urges that would only result in self-sabotage. Many times, we ourselves antagonize our progress because the mind is so good at convincing us to do what feels good.
Meditation allows you to detach from those thoughts, these thoughts aren’t your actual self and you’ll realize how fragile these thoughts are once you’re done with the said thing you did dictated by the mind, but by then it’s already too late as you’ve already been manipulated by the mind to eat more than what’s actually good for you.
The self-control you get from meditation is liberating and can help you spot these urges when they present themselves and give you the chance to do something about it, before that short-term feel-good chemical is released, only to go back to nothing.
I’m not saying you’re not gonna experience relapses every once in a while, but a significant decrease is better than nothing, and over time, it can become the norm for you to give your genuine will priority over the tricking mind.
But meditation benefits don’t happen from one week to another, or one month to another for most people.
Based on how I’m putting it, you’d think I’m against the mind and portraying it as some evil monster that’s trying to sabotage you.
But your mind can be used for your own benefit, more specifically, the subconscious. A major gap between meditating and not is in how the said subconscious is wired, whether it be to your benefit or not.
Overeating Due To Stress
Stress is a major driver pushing individuals to overeat. But meditation has a direct impact on stress, and over the long-term, you can reach a point where it doesn’t affect you to the same degree it did in the beginning. That’s one of the core goals of meditation.
If you’re not feeling a deep alleviation to stress when meditating, you’ll want to re-think the type of meditation you’re doing as it’s not serving you, and you’ll be more likely to follow the trend of leaving the practice.
Once you have a significant reduction in the stress you may experience in your day-to-day life, you’re likely to see that reflected in your eating habits, especially if the source of your eating is stress.
How To Approach Meditation In Relation to Overeating
This shouldn’t only be applied to overeating and gaining calories but everything in general, and it’s something that your mind starts automating the more meditation is ingrained in your subconscious.
Meditation is a journey on yourself, at least, the mindful one. When you observe what’s going inside your head without pointing fingers or deeming anything bad or good, but just letting thoughts be.
That’s why it’s common to coin the phrase “don’t do meditation, be meditation” because while meditating, more than doing is being. In this case, being there, observing your thoughts and then, thoughts that serve no purpose or thoughts that have a negative impact on you, stop having that same impact.
If you’re on a goal of burning calories, it’s important you don’t judge yourself if you have a habit in your life that’s assisting your calorie gain. Instead, meditation, helps you focus on the solution, in this case, it’ll often be exercising and eating healthier.
The mind will often try to fight this but let it. Once it’s a habit that you’ve replaced in your life with healthy eating and regular exercise, there will be nothing to complain about for the mind. In the end, the results speak for themselves.
Meditation alone is not enough to burn calories, but combined with exercise and good dieting, which all three go hand in hand really, meditation can indirectly help you burn calories.