Reduced Blood Pressure
(Current Hypertension Reports, December 2007)

This meta-analysis of 17 published studies from the medical literature (selected from over 100 published studies for their careful experimental design utilizing randomized controlled trials) reported on the effects of stress reduction techniques on elevated blood pressure in about 1000 subjects total.

The treatments employed included simple biofeedback, relaxation-assisted biofeedback, progressive muscle relaxation, stress management training, and the Transcendental Meditation program. The results of statistical analyses showed that none of the first 4 treatment approaches demonstrated statistically significant reductions in elevated blood pressure, while the Transcendental Meditation program showed both significant clinical and statistical reductions in blood pressure.

Full article

Other studies

Alexander C.N., et al. Transcendental Meditation, mindfulness, and longevity: An experimental study with the elderly. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 57:950-964, 1989.

Alexander C.N., et al. Trial of stress reduction for hypertension in older African Americans (part II): sex and risk subgroup analysis. Hypertension 28:228-237, 1996.

Anderson J.W., et al. Blood pressure response to Transcendental Meditation: a meta-analysis. American Journal of Hypertension 21 (3): 310-6, 2008.

Barnes V.A., et al. Impact of Transcendental Meditation on ambulatory blood pressure in African-American adolescents. American Journal of Hypertension 17: 366-369, 2004.

Barnes V. A., et al. Stress, stress reduction, and hypertension in African Americans. Journal of the National Medical Association, 89, 464-476, 1997.

Barnes V. A., et al. (1999). Acute effects of Transcendental Meditation on hemodynamic functioning in middle-aged adults. Psychosomatic Medicine, 61, 88, 525-531.

Rainforth M.V., et al. Stress reduction programs in patients with elevated blood pressure: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Current Hypertension Reports 9:520–528, 2007. Full article

Schneider R.H., et al. A randomized controlled trial of stress reduction in the treatment of hypertension in African Americans during one year. American Journal of Hypertension 18(1): 88-98, 2005. Full article

Schneider R.H., et al. Long-term effects of stress reduction on mortality in persons > 55 years of age with systemic hypertension. American Journal of Cardiology 95:1060-1064, 2005. Full article

Schneider R.H., et al. A randomized controlled trial of stress reduction for hypertension in older African Americans. Hypertension 26: 820-827, 1995.