You may want to get on the “Breathe in, breathe out” bandwagon as a team of boffins has suggested that meditation, a science-backed, no-prescription-needed way to reduce pain, is way better than taking morphine.

The study conducted at the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Centre in North Carolina suggests that just a few minutes of meditation each day could prove better pain relief than powerful drug medication.

The study showed that those individuals who had been taught to use relaxation and breathing techniques to cope with the pain had calmer brain scans. These people reported a 27 per cent reduction in pain intensity and 44 per cent less emotional pain.

Lead researcher Fadel Zeidan believes these findings prove that mindfulness meditation can produce different patterns of brain activity.

He said that based on the findings, they believe that as little as four 20-minute daily sessions of mindfulness meditation could enhance pain treatment in a clinical setting, adding “However, given that the present study examined healthy, pain-free volunteers, we cannot generalise our findings to chronic pain patients at this time.”

The study is reported in the Journal of Neuroscience.