One Way to Grow A Happy Brain

  • Happiness doesn’t come from the heart after all
  • Grey matters most
  • Grow your own happiness today!

Dear Reader,

It’s long been a human notion that happiness lies in your heart.

Time and again, people have proven this through their expressions. When you feel overjoyed or totally content, you may say something like “My heart is full.” Conversely, if you’re sad, you might say you’re brokenhearted.

One reason for this may be those warm and light feelings in your chest when you are truly happy or those sharp and aching pangs when you’re deeply sad.

As it turns out, though, your heart has little to do with your happiness — in fact, happiness is all in your head. Well, as research from Japan explains, a very specific part of your brain that is.

And what is even more incredible, the study suggests you may be able to physically grow the happy parts of your brain through a certain practice.

I will share this practice in bit. First, let’s take a closer look at what’s going on with happy brains.

--Gray Matters

While science has had its finger on how certain hormones can affect our emotions for a while, it’s never been clear where happiness and contentment come from.

Recently, researchers from Kyoto University preformed a study to find the source of happiness once and for all.

During their quest, the scientist had 51 participants undergo MRI scans and then compete three short surveys in order to gauge their happiness and contentment with life, as well as how intensely they experience negative and positive emotions.

When the results came in, the scientists discovered that the participants who experienced high happiness scores had more gray matter in a certain part of the brain — the precuneus — than their gloomy counterparts.

The precuneus is a part of the brain that influences consciousness and self-reflection.

The tiny dot in the upper right portion of the brain is the precuneus — the happiness region of the brain. Photo credit: home.bt.com

The tiny dot in the upper right portion of the brain is the precuneus — the happiness region of the brain. Photo credit: home.bt.com

But what is so intriguing about this finding — it seems that you have the power to grow this part of your brain, just like a muscle, through meditation.

In fact, previous studies have shown that those who meditate may have more grey matter in the precuneus and report greater feelings of happiness and contentment.

It’s thought that the precuneus is of significance for subjective happiness — meaning the type of happiness that occurs when you “make the best of it.”

“Over history, many eminent scholars like Aristotle have contemplated what happiness is. I’m very happy that we now know more about what it means to be happy.”

“Happiness depends upon ourselves.” — Aristotle

As the research indicates, meditation maybe the quickest route to a larger precuneus.

Sato agrees, “Several studies have shown that meditation increases gray matter mass in the precuneus. This new insight on where happiness happens in the brain will be useful for developing happiness programs based on scientific research.”

While meditation may seem like an impossible task for most, the most important part is taking the first step.

There is a website that can help you find a meditation center near you. It’s called Meditationfinder.com. Simply put your location in the search box to find a center in your area.

Aristotle was right — happiness does depend upon ourselves. Get started meditating today and grow your brain happy!

Live well,

Natalie Moore
Managing editor, Living Well Daily

Ed. Note: Please send your feedback: nmoore@lfb.org – and click here to like us on Facebook.

P.S. Again, I urge you to take action and sign up for our FREE event. It may be the most important thing you do for your health this year.

This event will help you to discover the root causes of America’s growing brain health problem. Plus, it lays out a simple and easy plan to protect yourself and your loved ones.


Sources

[1] The structural neural substrate of subjective happiness

[2] The search for happiness: using MRI to find where happiness happens

[3] Dan Harris Launches New Meditation App for Fidgety Skeptics

Natalie Moore

Written By Natalie Moore

Natalie Moore is a dedicated health researcher with a passion for finding healthy, natural, and science-based solutions. After a decade of direct healthcare experience in western and natural medicine, she was involved in public health research before joining Living Well Daily.

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