Clearing your mind can clear up your blood pressure problems. That’s the verdict of a recent study by researchers at Harvard University, who monitored the blood pressure of people who were asked to meditate for 20 minutes a day for eight weeks. WBUR reports that the study was small, involving 28 people with high blood pressure, all of whom had eight weeks of training in meditation which included a 20-minute CD they could play at home. The technique, designed to clear the mind, used deep breathing, muscle relaxation and concentration on a one-word mantra while passively ignoring intrusive thoughts. The researchers found that systolic blood pressure dropped by at least 10 points and diastolic dropped by at least 5 points in more than half of the group. Wait, there’s more. In those whose blood pressure dropped, 172 genes associated with inflammation, circadian rhythms and glucose metabolism were either switched on or switched off in ways that were different from those whose blood pressure remained high.