Research has shown that meditation increases your ability to control cravings:

  1. It reduces activity in the posterior cingulate cortex of the brain, which allows the mind to engage in moment-by-moment sensory experience instead of mindless addictive behaviour;
  2. It increases activity in the anterior cingulate cortex of the brain, which assists in self-regulation;
  3. It improves your ability to experience cravings without the need to react to them;
  4. It decreases stress which often is the cause of turning to these sorts of behaviours;
  5. It enables you to realise that you are not your thoughts, and they don’t have to control you;
  6. It increases your decision making ability.

For the scientists among us, links to specific research papers can be found here, here, here, and here.