Hello and welcome to week 9!
This week I worked on organizing my data by creating graphs, finding averages, and calculating standard deviations.
As I did this, I started to notice emerging trends. While not being of statistical significance, both diastolic and systolic blood pressure for each patient was lower after their participation in my experiment. This is consistent with results from previous studies that explored similar topics to mine. Studies conducted by UC Davis Medical Center scientists determined that “A person’s mindset also affects the body’s biochemistry, especially factors related to heart disease” (UC Davis Health, 2015). Gratitude can begin as “establishing a daily journaling practice to remember gifts, grace, benefits, and things enjoyed…setting aside time on a daily basis to recall moments of gratitude associated with ordinary events, your personal attributes, or valued people in your life”. By studying individuals who were keeping a gratitude journal and practicing other methods of expressing their appreciation for those around them, UC Davis scientists determined that “grateful people have 16 percent lower diastolic blood pressure and 10 percent lower systolic blood pressure compared to those less grateful”. My results indicated a 4% and 3% drop in the systolic and diastolic blood pressure measurements respectively compared to before gratitude practices. While mine was not as significant as the other study, the study conducted at UC Davis was more longitudinal than mine. The participants had the opportunity to practice gratitude for a much more extended period of time than my participants did. However, I believe both studies (mine and the one published by UC Davis Health) succeeded in showing the effectiveness of gratitude expression on lowering BP.
Next week I will continue to delve deeper into studying my data and working on my final research paper. Here are a few of the graphs I worked on this week: