We all deal with stress on some level. Whether it is financial, relational, vocational, you name it and the stress can be there. Now I know you might be thinking, “Does he really think prayer can reduce my stress?” And the answer is yes. Absolutely. I believe in God and that He created our bodies to be in connection and in relationship with Him ,and that He made our bodies to be able to heal themselves. And I do believe that prayer can relieve your stress. And now they are finding results through studies that say just that. There is something to our mind, heart and body all being connected; it’s the physical, emotional, and spiritual. God made us in His image and He knows just how to heal us in every way.
How Praying Heals Our Body From Stress
Prayer and having a healthy inner peace, so to say, can impact hormones, gut, sleep, lowering cortisol levels, and improving your attitude. Research has shown that people who pray and are spiritual are less stressed and much happier than those who don’t. And a study of college students in Canada who were connected with their campus ministries saw their doctors less and were less stressed during difficult times in a semester. They also had lower levels of depression and high higher positive feelings. A professor at Duke University found that elderly people who never or rarely attended church had a stroke rate double of those who did. And he found that heart patients were 14 times more likely to die following surgery if they were not spiritual.
Benefits of Prayer
1. Lowers Inflammation
Inflammation is the body’s response to stress, so when we pray we are able to slow ourselves down and remember that God is in control and allow Him to lead our lives. This is so important because most diseases start with inflammation, and high levels of cortisol (stress) can cause hormonal imbalance, gut issues, food cravings, low immunity, anxiety and depression.
2. Strengthens Immune System
Over time constant low immunity can cause diseases such as Alzheimers, diabetes, cardiovascular issues. So slowing down and praying about letting go of worry and anxiety can strengthen your immune system and help protect your body from diseases. A study was conducted in 2012 with cancer patients. A controlled group added prayer to their treatment and they had high improvements in their emotional, functional, and spiritual well being.
3. Increases Mindfulness
Praying allows your mind to live in the present moment. It allows you to not be dictated by your past or worried about your future. Prayer keeps your mind in the right perspective and it fills your heart with peace allowing you to be more aware of every minute. Instead of driving in the car and not realizing how you got there, you are aware of your surroundings, your children, your spouse, your destination and why you are going. Prayer allows you to be more in tune with your life. Studies have been done showing increased signals in brain regions that are related to emotions, dopamine, serotonin, and attention control. God created our bodies to be in communication with him, and when we do that it physically supports the function of our bodies. Pretty amazing huh?!
4. Fights Anxiety and Depression
When we pray it allows us to focus on our true purpose in life and why we are even here. When we are able to put God at the center, anxiety and depression decrease and peace, joy, and hope increase. Studies have shown that praying and finding your purpose has lowered the risk of depression and suicidal risk. There is power in prayer and darkness has to flee. It’s Biblical and the results have been found.
I believe that our bodies were meant to function together, physically, emotionally and spiritually. And when you do that you can find hope, healing, and restoration