Positive thoughts create more telomerase, an enzyme that help maintain the long-term health of the cells in our body. Cells die when levels of the enzyme are too low.
Meditation is one technique for achieving an immediate change in our mood and thoughts - and increase telomerase activity, say researchers from the University of California at San Francisco.
They tested 30 participants at a meditation retreat at the Shambhala Mountain Center in Colorado, who were taught Buddhist meditation techniques, and compared them with 30 similar controls, who did not meditate.
(Source: Psychoneuroendocrinology, 2010; doi: 10.1016/j.psyneuen,2010.09.010).