Can you get high from meditation? 5 ways it affects the mind and body

Have you ever experienced deep mental joy, relaxation, and a tranquil mind while practicing meditation?

If so, you might naturally wonder whether you can get high from meditation.

The simple truth is that sitting in silence, turning your attention inward, and focusing on your breath or a mantra can have profound benefits for your mental and physical health. And it can also lead to sensations close to “high.”

At least, that’s what I experience whenever I achieve deep peace while meditating.

Let’s discuss whether you can actually get high from meditation and the 5 ways it can affect your mind and body.

Can you get high from meditation?

Regardless of whether you’re a beginner or expert in meditation, from time to time, you might feel an unusual state of calm, joy, and happiness after meditating.

It’s like you’re in complete emotional control, and your mind is clear, sharp, and focused.

Now, this kind of mental state and the sensations you may feel can be very close to what people describe as a “high.”

But does that mean that you can actually get high from meditation?

Well, yes and no.

In order to answer this question, I believe that it’s important to define what “high” means and how people get there.

So, what does it mean to get high?

The word “high” is often used to describe a state of intense pleasure, euphoria, and bliss. It can also refer to an altered state of consciousness where you feel more alert, lively, and energetic.

In this state, your mind becomes clear of any negative thoughts or emotions, such as anxiety or depression. You feel more in control of yourself, and your body feels light and energetic.

On the other hand, if you’re under the influence of drugs or alcohol (or both), then you’re also likely to experience similar sensations as when you meditate deeply.

Believe it or not, some people even use meditation as a way to recover from drug addiction! Sounds impressive, right?

The reason is that meditation can lead to a natural high, which is why it’s considered a drug-free alternative to getting high.

This means that if you’ve ever felt that kind of sensation after meditating, it’s easy to understand why you might think that meditation can get you high.

Seriously, it turns out that meditation is a much more durable and profound way to experience a high than taking drugs, which are often short-term and dangerous.

Personally, the reason why I prefer this method to induce the natural state of “high” is that it’s not an external substance that I put into my body; rather, my mind and body are working naturally to achieve it.

Therefore, it’s inside my body and makes me closer to my inner self, thoughts, and feelings. And what could be better than naturally feeling a high from within?

The truth is that if you’re having these sensations during meditation, it’s not necessarily because you’re getting high.

Instead, it’s because your mind and body are working naturally to achieve this state.

So can you get high from meditation?

Well, there’s no solid evidence that shows meditating can get you high or lead to drug-like effects.

So, here’s the thing: you can’t physically get high from meditation.

But you might feel relaxed, happy, and refreshed, like when you’re high.

Yes, this is a correct description of the effects of meditation. I

It even has the same euphoric side-effects of being high: a feeling of deep joy, feeling relaxed, and a tranquil mind.

However, as you probably know, drugs are known for increasing dopamine levels in the brain. And guess what?

Meditation can also lead to hormonal changes — decrease stress hormones and increase serotonin in your body.

Let’s explore how it can actually influence your body and mind.

5 ways meditation affects your body and mind

1) It increases dopamine levels in your body

Did you know that a “high” sensation is actually caused by the release of more dopamine in your bloodstream?

Considering this, you might wonder whether you can get high on all the things that are known for increasing dopamine levels.

For example, some of the things that increase dopamine levels in your body are:

  • Getting enough sleep
  • Listening to your favorite music
  • Eating chocolate
  • Watching a movie
  • Spending time in the sun

Of course, meditation is also among those things that can increase dopamine levels in your bloodstream.

Why does this happen?

Well, when you meditate, you achieve a deep state of relaxation and focus.

Now you might tell me that dopamine isn’t related to calmness in any way. That’s right, but guess what?

This state of relaxation leads to a sense of happiness and joy over time. As a result, your body releases more dopamine.

Keep in mind that this is not only something I observed myself doing while practicing meditation. Instead, there are scientific studies that prove dopamine can naturally increase during meditation.

In fact, a 2014 study showed that individuals who performed yoga for 1 hour straight for 6 days had their dopamine levels increase.

Now, what does this mean?

Well, it simply means that you can get high on meditation. While the same thing can’t be said for every form of meditation, it’s definitely possible to achieve a state of euphoria and happiness through meditation.

This is one of the reasons I keep practicing meditation even today.

It’s not only a great way to spend time but also a natural way to increase the dopamine levels in your body.

2) It reduces stress hormones in your body

I’ve been there: you’re stressed out after a long day of work, and all you want is to get rid of these negative emotions so that you can relax at home.

Sounds familiar?

That’s when you might feel; the need to naturally cause the state of “high” and get rid of stress. And you know what?

One way to naturally reduce stress and increase happiness is to meditate. Now you probably wonder how it actually works. Well, for this, you need to understand what causes anxiety and stress in your body.

So here’s what causes anxiety and stress in your body:

Your brain releases stress hormones like cortisol that cause you to feel anxious and stressed.

When you’re stressed out, you experience a decrease in the levels of dopamine in your body. You don’t realize it, but when you’re stressed out, your blood pressure rises as well.

So what happens when levels of stress hormones such as cortisol increase in your body?

You feel more anxious and stressed than usual, right?

Well, meditation can help with this situation by reducing stress hormones.

With this said, meditation can be one of the best ways to naturally reduce stress levels in your body…and get high on it at the same time!

The thing is that meditation can produce a tranquil mind and help you detach your attention from worries and negative emotions.

You don’t have to worry about feeling stressed anymore because you’re no longer focusing on them.

When you meditate, you are able to get rid of stress in your body. That’s exactly how you can get high on meditation without having to take any drugs or alcohol.

3) It can enhance your physical and emotional well-being

Let me ask you a question.

What’s the reason you enjoy the practice of mediation?

Is it because you feel better physically after practicing? Or maybe you feel better emotionally after meditating.

In either case, one thing is for sure — meditation can enhance your physical and emotional well-being.

What I mean here is that meditation, and in particular, mindfulness, can help you focus on your inner feelings, reflect on them, and let go of negative emotions that you’ve been holding on to.

Mindfulness helps you get in touch with your feelings and experience what’s happening in your body.

You might have experienced the feeling of anxiety or stress before meditating, but after practicing mindfulness, you’ll be able to detect these feelings much easier. And once you do, you’ll be able to let them go right away.

What’s more, as I already said, meditation also helps you deal with stress and elevate your physical health by improving your sleep habits, lowering blood pressure, and reducing stress hormones.

That’s how it can help you improve your physical well-being. But what’s even better, practicing meditation naturally improves your emotional well-being as well.

How does it relate to the sensation of being “high”?

Well, enhanced physical and emotional well-being is related to increased dopamine levels. And this, in turn, is a prerequisite for feeling “high.”

4) It helps you get distracted and wander your mind

Want to know another important effect meditation can have on your body and mind?

It can help you get distracted and let your mind wander!

Again, the reason for this is that meditation helps you focus on your thoughts and feelings without getting caught up in them.

And once you’re able to do that, it’s easy to get distracted by other things too.

Let’s explain how this works.

When you’re meditating, your body is at peace, and your mind is in a state of peace. You are able to focus on the present moment and detach yourself from the past and future.

As a result, it makes it easier to shift between tasks and settings. In today’s world, where distractions are almost endless, meditation can help you achieve focus and stay productive.

If you’re meditating every day, I guarantee that at some point in time, you’ll start to feel like your mind has gone blank or like you’ve lost control of it.

This is because meditation has helped you get distracted from the negative thoughts and emotions that were bothering you before.

But once they’re gone, so are the distractions! You’ll be able to concentrate on what’s important: your feelings and thoughts.

You’ll be able to let go of whatever distracts from these two things — which means concentrating on them — will be easier for a while after meditating.

So here’s the truth:

If you’re looking for ways to get distracted from the physical world and the people around you, meditation is the answer.

And guess what?

There’s no need to consider using drugs in order to achieve the state of “high” when there’s a simpler way to do so without any side effects or negative consequences.

5) It helps you achieve self-awareness

And the final way meditation affects the mind and body that I’d like to discuss is how it helps you achieve self-awareness.

What is self-awareness?

Well, it’s the ability to be aware of yourself and your thoughts and feelings.

In other words, it’s being conscious of your own thoughts, feelings, and actions.

And this is why meditation is so effective at helping you achieve self-awareness: It helps clear your mind of all the distractions that come along with external pressures, worries, and fears.

When you’re able to clear your mind of all these things, you’ll be able to focus on yourself and on the present moment — which will help you achieve self-awareness.

You can then focus on a certain part of your body, such as your face or hands, or even the pulse in your hand.

This will then help you connect with yourself and be more connected to yourself. It’s a way to become more self-aware, which will be helpful in many ways.

For example, when we are able to be more self-aware, we are able to notice our feelings and emotions before they manifest themselves into physical symptoms, like headaches or stomach aches, for example.

We are also able to notice our thoughts that might not be making us feel good about ourselves, so we can change our mindsets about them for the better!

And believe it or not, the moment when you acknowledge you’re completely self-aware is very close to the feeling of “high.”

But what does this mean in practice?

Well, it means that every time you do a meditation session or engage in another type of exercise or activity that helps you achieve self-awareness, it’ll help you become more aware of yourself.

And as a result, over time, you’ll be able to learn more about yourself — which means that you can increase your self-awareness in many different ways!

Remember that the more aware you are of your inner thoughts and emotions, the more aware you will be of yourself.

And the more aware you are of yourself, the more self-aware you’ll be and the better you’ll feel.

The result is that meditation and self-awareness will help improve your health in many ways — and that’s why it’s so important to practice it regularly!

How can meditation lead to a state of “high”?

Now that you understand that you can actually get high from meditation, chances are that you’re thinking of how you can achieve this “high” effect.

So, how exactly does this work? How can meditation lead to these sensations?

Let’s get into the main points of this article and see how you can attain a state of “high” by practicing meditation.

The truth is that when you meditate, you achieve a deep sense of relaxation and peace. It’s like your mind stops racing and goes into a state of total control.

There are several reasons why this happens.

First, when you meditate, you focus on your breathing or an object like a candle flame. This helps your mind become clear of all distracting thoughts and emotions.

Second, meditation triggers the release of certain hormones in your body that make you feel happy and relaxed (I discussed this more above).

Third, as I said above, meditation can cause sensations similar to those that people experience when they’re high on drugs or alcohol (but without any negative side effects).

All these things combined can lead to what people describe as a “high.”

That’s why I believe that the answer to the question of whether meditation can get you high is yes and no at the same time.

Yes, you can get high from meditation because it can:

  • Help you achieve a deep sense of relaxation and peace in your mind.
  • Release certain hormones that make you feel happy and relaxed.
  • Cause sensations similar to those that people experience when they’re high on drugs or alcohol (without any side effects).

No, you can’t get high from meditation because it can’t:

  • Cause you to experience euphoria (a state of extreme happiness).
  • Make you hallucinate or feel as if you’re on drugs or alcohol.
  • Cause you to experience hallucinations.
  • Undergo any kind of addiction or dependency.

Most importantly, meditation doesn’t give you the illusion that it can make you lose control of your actions. Instead, it helps you realize that you’re the one who has complete control over your thoughts, emotions, and actions.

And besides, it never leads to any harmful side effects, unlike common substances that lead to a “high” sensation.

So, if you want to achieve the state of “high” naturally, without experiencing any harmful side effects, then you should definitely think about practicing meditation!

Final thoughts

So, to summarize, meditation can help you experience dramatic changes in your mental and physical health by meditating regularly.

And it can also give you the same joy, relaxation, and tranquil mind that you get when you’re high.

So, yes, you can feel high from meditation on a number of different levels. But it doesn’t mean that you’re going to experience any kind of euphoria or that you’ll become addicted to it.

I hope this article has helped you understand the truth behind the question of whether meditation can get you high or not. Hopefully, you’re not convinced to either keep practicing meditation if you already have to or take steps forward and engage in this insightful practice!

Nato Lagidze

Nato Lagidze

Nato is a writer and a researcher with an academic background in psychology. She investigates self-compassion, emotional intelligence, psychological well-being, and the ways people make decisions. Writing about recent trends in the movie industry is her other hobby, alongside music, art, culture, and social influences. She dreams to create an uplifting documentary one day, inspired by her experiences with strangers.

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